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How have you broken binging habits?

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Old 01-17-2014, 06:46 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by mrslosingit View Post
locke-I 'm the same way as you.i have to stay away.I have no control either
Losingit, I'd like you to consider you might have control. Scientists are discovering a hormone that controls appetite or at least help controls it. Starts with an L.

For a lot of overweight people this hormone's signals are overridden. So they truly do have no control. I've changed things I know I have and I am not unique.

After my detox period and a little more each month my control has gotten better and better. Just today I had a gourmet brownie with my wife. These are really small but so flavorful. I had half....slowly. It left me more full than 2 or 3 used to. I have changed, literally, the hunger hormones. I think the other big one is gher something.

What if you could literally change how foods impacted you? Well I believe you can. You may have to go through some avoidence period like I did and perhaps exercise more. I am doing/did both so not sure if both are needed. But anyhow foods are less addictive to me AND less fills me up. I changed my biochemistry to some extent. Or overwrote some addictive brain pathways.

So my control didn't necessarily increase, but how food impacts me did. I think most people can experience this.

Anyhow I hope people reading this believe your control as regards food is not static. It CAN improve.

Last edited by diamondgeog : 01-17-2014 at 06:57 PM.
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Old 01-20-2014, 10:02 PM   #32
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Cold turkey. I don't know if I have binging habits but I definitely have "constantly-eating-because-why-not?" habits. LOL. Maybe that's what others call binging. Is it? I don't know anymore! In any case... I started the IP protocol today and have decided that cold turkey works for me. My husband told me to ease into the program but I think that stopping at once all that foolishness of eating the whole time because there was food around would do me some good. So far, so good. It's worked in the past too.
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Old 01-21-2014, 11:22 AM   #33
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Losingit, I'd like you to consider you might have control. Scientists are discovering a hormone that controls appetite or at least help controls it. Starts with an L.
I believe you're speaking of leptin.

Here's some information I found about leptin on WebMD:

http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/t...-on-leptin-faq
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Old 01-21-2014, 03:29 PM   #34
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I found this article while I was looking around online to help control the binge eating habit I have. I also posted it in the January Binge Eating thread. While it is a very long article I wanted to share. It did help me come to the realization that most of my binge eating occurs because I stuff my anger, I get mad and then instead of dealing with that person or action that makes me angry, I binge to release all the emotions and tension..

Breaking Free from Binge Eating
These tips are not listed in any specific order.

1) Another diet is NOT the answer

There’s a good chance that a diet is what spiraled you into binge eating in the first place. I know that was the case for me. In the past I have experimented with several diets: low fat, low carb, and numerous others. And I kept looking for the diet that would end all of the confusion and allow me to escape the binge eating behaviors I had developed.
But thankfully I finally realized that another diet is not the answer.

In my experience, strict diets, especially those that revolve around limiting or completely eliminating foods, food groups, or macronutrients only add fuel to the binge eating fire.

The solution is not found in a diet, so don’t search for one.

2) Think ADDITION instead of RESTRICTION

This tip comes from David Dellanave and he posted it to his Twitter account a while back, and I think it’s so intelligently simple.

”In general I tell people to add instead of remove. When you add something, something else naturally has to fall away. Plus you’re focusing on an action you CAN do versus trying NOT to do something you’re already in a strong habit of doing.”

Don’t think about foods you should limit. For example, I love ice cream and I know it’s not something I should eat every day. But, instead of thinking, “Oh, I better not eat ice cream every day” I instead choose to focus on the foods I get to eat every day, and I make an effort to include a wide variety of foods into my eating regimen.

Restriction –> Binge Eating –> Guilt –> Restriction –> Binge Eating –> Guilt

As you can, a focus on restriction just leads to a vicious cycle of binge eating and guilt. Don’t think about restriction because it only makes things worse.

So ask yourself, what are you some foods you can ADD to your meals? You can even make an effort to choose a food from multiple food groups such as veggies, fruits, meats, dairy, nuts, etc.

Make sure you choose foods you like or new foods you want to try.

3) Stop trying to be perfect

I was once told that people who are self-proclaimed perfectionists are more likely to develop disordered eating behaviors, and I think they were right.

I’ve been a perfectionist most of my life. I even managed to get straight A’s in college, and I refused to settle for anything less.

As a result I applied this same attitude towards my nutrition, which I believe also led me to develop disordered eating habits.

Before I became a compulsive binge eater, I demanded perfection and only ate “the best” foods. My diet was “squeaky clean”, whatever that means.

If I messed up, I gave myself **** and demanded better.

All this ended up doing was making me miserable. I didn’t allow myself to enjoy meals, my favorite foods, or even family get-togethers filled with my favorite homemade meals because they weren’t “clean” enough for me.

After a while, all of this got to me. That’s when I really started binge eating.

I couldn’t take it anymore. No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t be perfect all the time.

So I started to say, “Screw it!” and cut loose. That’s when I’d binge eat anything in site.

I still remember the first time I lost control and experienced my first binge.

It was scary. Little did I know it was the first of many.

“Perfect is the enemy of good” is a quote by Voltaire that basically claims that striving for perfection often results in no progress at all.

I also believe that to be true. Once I finally stopped trying to be “perfect” I was able to relax. Don’t look at things as if they’re black or white.You don’t have to be “perfectly on plan” or “completely off”. There can be a balance. Learn to find, and live in, that balance. Ditch the thought of perfection. You’ll be happier and much less stressed.

4) Stay off the scale

Many people who battle binge eating also weigh themselves frequently.

Get off the scale. That number does NOT indicate your self-worth. That number does not tell you what’s really going on with your body. It does not indicate your success.


5) Ditch cheat days

Some people claim a cheat day is the answer to their binge eating problem.

They’re “good” during the week and then one day, usually on the weekend, they go crazy and eat any and everything they want for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.

I think this only contributes to the binge eating cycle. Because you’re only allowed to enjoy “forbidden” foods for that single day, you’re more likely to over eat AND eat foods you don’t even care for because of the fact they’re “off limits” every other day of the week.

Many people I’ve spoken to who have done the whole “cheat day” thing say they usually feel horrible that day, and after, from eating so much food. In my opinion, cheat days can also promote binge eating because you’re left thinking, “This is the only chance for a whole week I’ll have to eat these ‘forbidden’ foods.” As a result, people gorge themselves.

They end up eating foods they don’t even like and cramming as much food in their bellies as they can manage. In my opinion, stay away from cheat days.

6) Celebrate ALL victories and don’t dwell over minor set-backs

My binge eating habits were so bad I would binge every single day. I think I went a month straight where I would binge at least once a day.

But when I finally committed to being kind to myself and taking things slowly, I remember the first day I went without binge eating in over a month.

And I celebrated this victory.

Sure, I ended up binge eating the next day, but I still celebrated that victory.

Eventually I made it two days without binge eating. Then three.

Then I’d slip, binge, and start back from zero.

But the point is that I celebrated every victory. Whether it was going a day without binge eating, being kind to myself, or engaging in positive self-talk I would meditated on the good things and not dwell on the negative.

Don’t be so hard on yourself. Celebrate whenever possible, even if it’s something very small.

And when you do slip up, don’t dwell on it.

I know it’s easier said than done, but when you do binge, don’t dwell on it for hours or even days afterward.

Just move on. Focus on something POSITIVE instead.

7) Ditch the rigid rules

Ditch rules about what foods to eat, what not to eat, when to eat, and any other rigid rules.

Instead, learn to listen to your body.

You don’t need a book to tell you what foods to eat or even when to eat.

I encourage you instead to eat real, whole, natural foods most of the time. Eat when you’re physically hungry and learn to do something other than turn to food when you’re gripped by emotion and want to eat.

It may take some time, but relearn your natural innate cues of physical hunger.

If you’re not hungry but want to turn to food, make an effort to do something else. An idle mind is often hard to combat, so try doing something physically active, get out of the house, go for a hike, or have a good conversation with a friend.

We’ll talk more about listening to your body in a moment . . .

8) Food may be fuel, but it should also be enjoyed

“Food is just fuel for the body,” some people exclaim. As a result, some people don’t care how their food tastes because they’re eating exclusively for the fuel aspect.

I’m not one of those people. I love food.

And I tried the whole “food is just fuel” approach in the past, and as a result I ate “healthy” foods I strongly disliked. I forced myself to eat them because they were good for me.

Likewise, many of my binge episodes consisted of foods I didn’t particularly like.

I’d eat any junk food that was around because I thought it was “forbidden” or “unclean”, and so I’d binge on it. I ate so many cookies, cakes, candy bars, and other processed foods I didn’t even think tasted good.

So the solution is simple – only eat foods you enjoy, whether it’s real, whole foods or some of your favorite not-so-healthy-but-delicious foods.

Food should be enjoyed. No matter what you’re eating, make sure it’s something you like.

9) Put the focus on what your body can DO

In the midst of my binge eating habits, working out was a chore. It was something I did to punish myself for eating so many calories.

And I began to dread every single workout.

But, when I was applying some of the tips on this list to my eating habits, I decided to overhaul my approach to strength training.

I put the focus on what my body could DO, and nothing else.

My sole purpose and focus at the gym was getting stronger and becoming more awesome. Adding more weight to the bar. Performing more challenging bodyweight exercises.

And this was a tremendous help to me. It allowed me to be proud of my physical abilities. To be proud of what my body could accomplish instead of obsessing over how it looked.

I appreciated my body for what it could do and what it was capable of.

I now focus on, and am proud of, my strength and what my body can DO

10) Have positive support

For the longest time I didn’t tell anyone about my binge eating habit.

But I knew I needed help, and so I confided in someone close to me. Someone I thought would help me and be understanding.

Boy, was I wrong.

I was basically presented with a, “That’s not a big deal. Why don’t you just stop binge eating and get over it?” sort of response.

Oh, wow! There’s an idea! Why don’t I just stop?

Don’t make the same mistake I did. Tell someone you know you can trust and who will support you. Don’t surround yourself with jerks who basically make fun of you and claim you’re blowing things out of proportion.

Years later as my binge eating got worse, I took the plunge and confided in someone else.

This time, it went incredibly well. This person didn’t judge me and was understanding and supportive, and this made a HUGE impact on me.

It was nice having someone to talk to who would listen without being condescending.

Find someone you can trust, and talk to them. You can always begin with a counselor or someone who is qualified to help with disordered eating habits.

11) Focus on ACTIONS, not outcomes

Proclaiming, “I want to stop binge eating” isn’t enough.

You’re far better off focusing on ACTIONS you can take, consistently, that will lead you in that direction.

Come up with some actions you can perform on a weekly basis.

Here are some examples:

Stock your house with real, whole foods you enjoy
Perform 3 strength training workouts per week and focus solely on what you can DO
Engage in a fun activity 1-3 times per week
Focus on eating your meals slowly
Say one positive thing to yourself every morning and evening
Eat slowly and savor your food

Write down these action goals and any others you can think of and strive to complete them each week.

12) How to handle binge foods?

Different things work for various people, but what worked for me was keeping the foods I’d most likely binge on out of the house.

Now these foods were not “off limits” by any means. I learned to listen to my body and if I truly wanted a common binge food, such as ice cream, then I’d go out and buy a pint, bring it home, and enjoy it guilt free. This is important — learn to eat your favorite foods with zero guilt.

So my solution was to keep common binge foods out of the house, but go and get them when I truly craved them.

If you live with someone who likes having a ton of snacks or other foods that tempt you around the house, then try talking to them. Hopefully they’ll understand and jump on board with you.

This tip was very helpful for me, and over time, I was able to have previous binge foods in the house at all times without being tempted.

13) Stay away from “rapid fat loss” approaches

As a result of my binge eating problems I gained quite a bit of extra fat. And it devastated me. On several occasions I turned to “quick fix” approaches because I was freaking out and wanted to lose the excess weight immediately.

All this did was make things significantly worse.

You must lose the “quick fix” mindset and avoid these methods at all costs.

It sounds pathetically cliche, but you must take this journey one day at a time.

Remember to focus on daily ACTIONS you can control such as engaging in positive self talk, cooking homemade meals with new foods, focusing on your performance with your workouts, confiding in a friend, and other actions.

This is not about a quick solution. It’s about taking the time to heal and adopting a sustainable lifestyle approach that’s enhances your life and doesn’t dominate it.

You want to slowly develop eating habits you can sustain long-term.

14) Be patient

This isn’t a fun tip, but it’s important.

Throughout this process you must be patient. Don’t expect overnight results, and don’t give up either.

It’s going to take some time to break the binge cycle in addition to other bad habits such as negative self-talk.

But learn to be patient. That brings us to the next important point . . .

15) Be kind to yourself

You’re going to slip up. And when you do, you must be kind to yourself.

Berating yourself when you binge or slip up only makes things worse.

Instead of calling yourself a “failure” or something similar, be kind to yourself. Realize it’s just a tiny mistake. Give yourself a break because you are trying your very best.

You are absolutely wonderful, and you need to know that.

You’re awesome and strong. Be kind to yourself. Furthermore, this was mentioned in the positive social support tip, but make sure you’re surrounded by people who are kind to you, and people who know you are an amazing person.

Here’s a great quote:

Being around people who are negative or put you can can only make things worse for you.

Make sure you surround yourself with positive, uplifting people. If you’re not, then it’s time to make a change.

16) Know that you’re amazing as you are, at this very moment

My friend, you are not flawed. You don’t need to be “repaired” in any way.

Know that you are amazing as you are this very moment.

You don’t have to completely break free from the binge eating cycle before you can be amazing, because you already are.

Know that. Embrace it.

17) Learn to listen to your body

We touched on this already, but it’s something that really helped me.

Learn to listen to your body. Relearn how to identify physical hunger.

In the midst of my disordered eating habits, I couldn’t identify physical hunger. I lost that ability for well over a year, even when I started to recover from binge eating. But I was patient and became more intune to my body’s signals.

Learn to identify physical hunger. And when you eat, eat slowly and savor your food. Listen to your body’s signals and identify when you’re satisfied. Make an effort to stop eating when you’re satisfied, but not overly stuffed.

Know that you don’t have to binge because you can eat again when you’re physically hungry.

Again, this probably will take some time, but be patient and consistent.

Likewise, don’t look to diet books to tell you what foods to eat and what to avoid – listen to your body.

Eat the foods that make you feel best and cut back on those that don’t. You don’t need anyone to tell you what to eat. Your body is smart, so learn to listen to it.

18) Stop focusing on fat loss

Chances are one of your primary goals is to lose fat. And if that’s the case, I’m willing to bet the way you eat and work out revolves around thoughts of losing body fat.

Well, it’s time to stop thinking about fat loss and adopt a more positive mindset and focus.

This was another important tip that helped me break out of the binge eating cycle, and I highly suggest you give it a shot. Click here for more information on this topic (but please finish the rest of this article as well).

19) Engage in positive self-talk

We commonly, and unfortunately, use words like “hate” and “don’t like” when referring to our bodies.

It’s time to change that. Erase those words from your vocabulary and adopt positive, motivating, uplifting words instead.

Learn to compliment your physical abilities, personality, and even things you love about your physique. Focus on these things.

You may have to apply the fake it ’til you make it approach, but it’s an important step nonetheless.

First thing in the morning say, and mean, something positive to yourself. It can be about a body part you like, a physical ability, or anything else. Just say something uplifting.

20) Be confident

I know how discouraging it can feel when you’re battling disordered eating habits. I asked myself more times than I can count, “Will this ever get better? Will I ever be able to go a day without obsessing over food and binge eating?”

Admittedly, there were times I thought I’d never break free, but then I changed my perspective.

I knew I could defeat this. I knew some day I could use that horrible experience for something positive.

And that’s why I’m writing this article.

It’s my sincerest hope this helps at least one person. If it does, then I’m grateful for the battle I fought, and won.

And I know that you can win, too. Be confident. It will get better.
Your Turn to Break Free

How exactly you choose to implement the tips above is up to you. I do suggest, however, beginning with the tips that will be easiest for you to employ.

Don’t try to do everything all at once. Choose a few tips that sound the easiest and apply them. Do your best to apply those tips consistently for a few weeks, and then add another tip or two. Remember - be patient and be kind to yourself.

Focus on ACTIONS you can take on a daily basis.

all content © nia shanks 2013


This article had numerous ideas that all of us could apply. It sure points out the cycle of binge eating, not only are there the physical issues after the eating it is the emotional issues that binge eating cause.
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Old 01-21-2014, 04:24 PM   #35
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I was determined to succeed this time. I just stopped bread, pasta, and potatoes. And fast food. The first week was hard but truly not super bad. I made three weeks then virtually everything lost its appeal to me. Ice cream, cake, cookies, candy bars.

It was super freaking awesome. Google carbs and blood sugar. Invest in three weeks of stopping cold turkey. For me it resulted in a lifetime of no more hunger (I hope, obviously has only been 8 months). But they have been wonderful hunger free months without hunger even with eating less than I did before.

I personally can have say an order of fries now and be fine. I truly believe my carb metabolism has changed. Before with so many carbs daily my body just stored em all. Trying to get the glucose out of my blood. So i could have a 1000 calories but my body barely got any for energy. Hence it was hungry soon after and i was a slave to hunger and a huge belly and weight. I urge everyone to try cold turkey if they can. Might be the best thing you ever do for yourself
This is me also. Just one day I decided to give up sugar and grains. I've had bits here and there, and I just don't bring any processed garbage into the house to begin with; but I honestly think if it was here (I've had chocolate chips in the cupboard for a long time that I would normally be winnowing down handful by handful), I still wouldn't eat it. I have many days I'm just not hungry and some days I'm really hungry but not the kind of manic hungry that makes a bag of cookies sound good. When I get like that, I just eat some protein and some raw veggies and give it some time to go away. So there's still an element of willpower or talking myself out of it; but when low carbing, it's less and less and easier and easier.
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Old 01-21-2014, 04:35 PM   #36
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I no longer have that need to binge, but I sure did for many years, especially during the weight loss process and especially with chocolate. Moderation worked, I didn't remove it from my diet, but I allowed for a certain amount daily. I also did little tricks like putting a spoonful of cocoa in my coffee for a chocolate flavour. And I'd guzzle down a large glass of water if the urge was really strong, that always cut my desire to eat anything.
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Old 01-22-2014, 10:27 AM   #37
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It sounds weird, but when I've got the thought in my head that I "need" chocolate, I almost go into a trance and walk myself into the shop...and before I know it, BAM! There's a massive bar of galaxy in my bag.
I was struck by this statement.

Lizbug, you are NOT in a trance. You are in full control of your actions. Try to stay mindful of every single choice you make as you prepare yourself for a binge:

1. You detour from your usual route into the shop
2. You walk to the candy aisle
3. You pick up the candy
4. You carry it to the check-out
5. You pay for it
6. You take it home
7. You eat the first bite of it
etc.

That is a LOT of opportunities to stop yourself before you are binging. You can stop at any one of these points and think about what the binge costs you with respect to your long-term plan and commitment to your goals. You have free will to exercise to stop it.

One trick that helps me remain mindful and find my will as I go through the same series of steps is to say to myself, "Well, I won't go buy candy to binge on today. Maybe I'll let myself do it tomorrow." NOT TODAY is a central part of my approach to finding the discipline I need to avoid binging (and other types of overeating). The trick of course is to say the same thing to myself tomorrow!

I don't always succeed. I struggle with binging. But keeping in mind that I have many opportunities along the way to stop before an entire bag of candy has found its way into my stomach helps a great deal.

To those who find eating the binge food in moderation keeps the binges away: This fascinates me. For me, binging is not at all about the food itself. When I have the urge to binge, it is not because I want a square of chocolate. It is because I want the numbing, indulgent sensation of plowing through the entire bag of chocolate.

Put another way, it is much easier for me to resist one square of chocolate than one pound of chocolate.

So to the OP and others who are baffled by this advice, do not feel like there is something wrong with you if moderation doesn't work. It's just that the way you are wired, the need that binging serves, isn't addressed by moderation. For some of us, moderation is the right answer to the wrong question.
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Old 01-25-2014, 04:57 PM   #38
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This is me also. Just one day I decided to give up sugar and grains. I've had bits here and there, and I just don't bring any processed garbage into the house to begin with; but I honestly think if it was here (I've had chocolate chips in the cupboard for a long time that I would normally be winnowing down handful by handful), I still wouldn't eat it. I have many days I'm just not hungry and some days I'm really hungry but not the kind of manic hungry that makes a bag of cookies sound good. When I get like that, I just eat some protein and some raw veggies and give it some time to go away. So there's still an element of willpower or talking myself out of it; but when low carbing, it's less and less and easier and easier.
I could have written that I seriously don't think will power is as important as people think. Not unimportant. But food choices for me are Much more important. I used to have daily eating habits that were making me hungry all the time. When I changed those my hunger dropped dramatically.

I know it sounds crazy hard, cut out the foods you binge on. But it can be done. Then some like me can reintroduce them. They don't have the same hold on me now.

BTW in addition to raw veggies and protein I also drink water. Amazing how when I have the rare hunger now it was because I forgot to drink enough water. Usually on weekends when out and about.

Last edited by diamondgeog : 01-25-2014 at 04:59 PM.
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