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Old 07-09-2007, 02:57 PM   #1  
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Default Talk to me, Fellow Emotional Eaters! What to you do with these @#$% emotions!

Ok...I'm gonna lay it all out there.

Sugary starchy foods are my worst enemies. These foods make me fat...I feel uncomfortable and unattractive in my own body. These foods make me depressed and moody....I'm never satisfied with life and I want to cry often. These foods make me tired.....the sugar highs and lows leave me feeling like I need several hours of sleep in the middle of my day.

Sugary starchy foods are my friends. They make me feel good...like a big warm hug. When I'm depressed, these foods fill the void and lift my spirits. When I'm anxious, these foods relax me. When I'm angry, these foods comfort me. When I'm lonely, these foods keep me company.

I want to lose this weight......OMG, I want it so very very much! If a genie gave me a choice of losing 100 pounds or receiving millions of dollars...I'd take the 100lb loss! Yes, I've learned that there is no magic pill, no magic drink, no magic diet. My genie will never show up and I have to figure this our on my own. But...I don't know what to do with these horrible emotions that just overwhelm me and sap every ounce of motivation and strength I have.

To those of you who are winning the battle, please tell me...what do you do with your emotions? Do you ever feel like you're jumping out of your skin and you'll scream if you don't eat something?
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Old 07-09-2007, 03:03 PM   #2  
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I tend to either want to eat everything in the house or nothing at all...
When I'm in "everything" mode I find that it helps if I keep all whole foods in the house. It's hard for me to OD on chicken breast, brown rice and veggies. Plus, if I have less sugary-starchy things around, it helps control those cravings. Amazing how I don't miss sugar when I haven't eaten it in weeks.

Hang in there - they're only cravings. This too shall pass.
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Old 07-09-2007, 03:11 PM   #3  
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Emotions are a hard thing....what works for one person, doesn't really always work for another. One thing I have found that helps me is keeping a daily log of how I feel. It really helps me reflect on the life changes I am making and how they are truly making me feel. Another thing is, do you have somone to talk to? I would maybe get someone to be your "emotional" supporter. Someone that maybe you just set up to call if you are having a weak moment, or email. Also, drink water. I sometimes drink so much water that my belly is SO full that nothing else is going to fit! Exercise, chew gum, anything to get your mind off it. These are just some suggestions! I hope you figure out YOUR way of getting through it, and I KNOW you can!!
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:00 PM   #4  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GirlyGirlSebas View Post
Do you ever feel like you're jumping out of your skin and you'll scream if you don't eat something?
This is the best description I've heard for what I feel in that moment. I've always had a hard time explaining that feeling! I remember sitting on the kitchen floor crying once because I needed to eat something and was trying so hard not to that I broke down.

I've had two experiences with losing weight and the emotions. The first time I didn't so much deal with the emotions as I avoided them. I would go to a part of the house that was nowhere near the kitchen, food, or any people eating food, or I'd brush my teeth, I'd scribble my thoughts in a journal, or I'd just go to bed (even at 6 PM if that's what it took). If I had a breakdown because I wanted to eat, I knew that if I just powered through it (whether it meant crying, screaming (into a pillow ), etc.) it would eventually go away and I would be proud of myself for not giving in. This is the second time around for me. This time in addition to therapy, I am on anti-depressants that have gotten rid of many of my compulsive eating thoughts (It's a side effect for some people and has been a gift from God for me). In addition I feel so desperate to have this weight gone that I feel like I don't care what it takes or what I have to suffer through.

I would think about the journal thing. When I was most desperate, I'd write down everything I was thinking, crazy rants and all. Going back later to read it, I can feel the pain I was in. It's almost like it was written by someone else. You might try it-- it can help you to understand the emotions or at least acknowledge them.
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:02 PM   #5  
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I am a classic emotional eater, i have found that it is something im always going to have to deal with, there is no cure for it, so i tend to have strategies for when it does strike. For example i dont keep foods that I tend to binge on in the house. I try and write in my journal when im feeling upset and angry or take a walk. Sometimes none of these strategies work and I binge, but the key is not to let one binge ruin it all for you. Thats where it used to all go wrong for me, one binge would last a week. Now i try and start the next day fresh, that is difficult, but i do my best!!
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:33 PM   #6  
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It is so very hard to not eat. I was home alone with my two year old yesterday and I just wanted to eat. (and eat and eat) I was depressed because my vacation was over and I knew I had to go back to work the next day and because my birthday was Saturday (another year older and all that) and I just wanted to eat. I can't understand people who don't have this problem. It's so normal for me to have uncontrollable urges to eat and it's nearly impossible to stop myself. I don't keep the crap in my house and that has worked for me so far - to an extent. I keep cheese doodles in the house for the baby because she loves them so much and I ended up eating almost the whole bag yesterday. I was ashamed of myself and even more ashamed when my little girl wanted cheese doodles that night and there weren't any left. How horrible is that? I really don't know how to control it except to try to keep it away from you. If it's not there, we can't eat it.
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:42 PM   #7  
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I hear you loud and clear!

It took me months and months, but I think I've established better habits that will *usually* (but not always) foil binges.

I agree with CLC! Writing- pen to paper will usually help me. There's somethign really satisfying about it. I've never really liked "handwriting" things, but as of right now it takes more concentration than typing does, since we've all become so accustomed to it. Nothing is off limits- of course, no one will ever see my "diary." I don't make myself feel like I have to put it in any sort of context.. or explain or rationalize my feelings to make them seem less "severe"- I just pour my heart onto that stupid piece of paper for half an hour, and by that time I've distracted myself enough.

Another thing that helps me is to firmly plant my arse in my chair and physically NOT let myself get up and get that food. If I'm home and sitting watching tv, and have to go to the bathroom (which goes through the kitchen.. yikes).. .I'll go around the house through the damn living room instead. ANYTHING to keep me away from temptation.

And, something I've never been good at but as I get older I'm better- I think about the future rather than the present. What will satiate me now will work to keep me wallowing in my misery a year from now. Sometimes even knowing that won't foil a binge- but usually, it will.

And sometimes I'll flop in my bed and punch pillows, cry, etc- it's better to let that emotion out (if you can) than let it stay pent up.

You're not alone, Rhonda.
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Old 07-09-2007, 04:42 PM   #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GirlyGirlSebas View Post
Ok...I'm gonna lay it all out there.

Sugary starchy foods are my worst enemies. These foods make me fat...I feel uncomfortable and unattractive in my own body. These foods make me depressed and moody....I'm never satisfied with life and I want to cry often. These foods make me tired.....the sugar highs and lows leave me feeling like I need several hours of sleep in the middle of my day.

Sugary starchy foods are my friends. They make me feel good...like a big warm hug. When I'm depressed, these foods fill the void and lift my spirits. When I'm anxious, these foods relax me. When I'm angry, these foods comfort me. When I'm lonely, these foods keep me company.

I want to lose this weight......OMG, I want it so very very much! If a genie gave me a choice of losing 100 pounds or receiving millions of dollars...I'd take the 100lb loss! Yes, I've learned that there is no magic pill, no magic drink, no magic diet. My genie will never show up and I have to figure this our on my own. But...I don't know what to do with these horrible emotions that just overwhelm me and sap every ounce of motivation and strength I have.

To those of you who are winning the battle, please tell me...what do you do with your emotions? Do you ever feel like you're jumping out of your skin and you'll scream if you don't eat something?
Rhonda, I was the same exact way with starchy foods AND sugary foods and the combination of starchy and sugary foods.

The ONLY way I got past it - was to give them up ENTIRELY. They just simply had to be off limits to me. I couldn't leave the door open to allowing them in. I had to set STRICT rules for myself. And stick to them. Cause like you, I would rather of lost the 100 lbs then have a million bucks. So yup, I had to say goodbye to my "friends". What is it they say, with friends like that, who needs enemies. I know you think you can't do without them - but I promise you, you CAN.

They're NOT our friends Rhonda, they're EVIL. EVIL, I say. And they are, I'm not kidding. I simply could not have it both ways. I could not have them in my life AND be fit and healthy AND LOSE THE WEIGHT. I had to give up one or the other. I chose to give up the starchy/sugary stuff. Please, please, PLEASE trust me - it's worth it. And no, I know what you're all saying, how can I live like that? How can I "deprive" myself? Hellloooo - very, very easily. It's all along that I was depriving myself by eating the evil stuff - of a fit, healthy and HAPPY ME. THAT was deprivation. How can I live like that? Well, quite frankly - I was barely living while I WAS eating that stuff. NOW, that I have elminated it - NOW I''m FIRST living.

Now when I made those STRICT rules, they were rules that I had to put in place INITALLY. I knew that eventually, far down the road I could have a little, tiny bit of the stuff in extreme moderation. And I have. But I'm usually too terrifed to eat any of it and would rather take a pass on it all together. And Rhonda you WILL feel the same way, I just know it.

I can't say this enough. It's worth it. It's worth it Rhonda. I promise you. And another thing, I don't even want it anymore - 99.9% of the time. It's about tradeoffs. You give up something - you get something back in return. Something bigger and better - yup, that healthier, happier YOU. And there's plenty of stuff that I CAN eat - and I do.

Rhonda, you must, must, MUST find other things to comfort you. There's no other way around it. Read, computer, clean, journal, exercise, polish your nails, drink water, drink hot tea, knit, sew, crochet, play solitaire, do a jig. Do SOMETHING other then eat. Set up rules for yourself. You CAN do it. I was the worlds worst, horrible, awful eater. Eventually it WILL get easier. When you see those pounds dropping and your dress size plummeting and those compliments start roaring in and your energy level and your activity level soars, and you find your inner clothes horse and you gain confidence in every single area- it propels you more and more to do without - the evil stuff.

As far as ever feeling like if I don't eat something I will jump out of my skin. Yup. It happens ALL the time. It just happened today. I got a phone call that they've cancelled my health insurance and all he*l is breaking loose. I just ate three sugar free sucking candies in a row. I don't do it often - but I just needed to get something in my mouth. When you feel that need to eat - it doesn't have to be caloric. I find I am satisfied eating a sliced cucumber or some baby carrots or a handful of dry cereal. ANYthing. It's just the ACT of eating for me sometimes, I bet it's the same with you, but you don't even realize it. But that anything doesn't have to be high calorie and unhealthy. Tradeoffs. I've substituted the bad for the good. Yes, I still eat due to emotions, but nothing, NOTHING like I used. I never in a million years would have thought that to be the case. But it is.

I know I sound like a broken record and you're all tired of hearing me, but this has been the most incredible, worthwhile experience in the entire world for me. There is nothing that I can say here that can let you know just how worth it is. You must experience it to know that. And you can. You CAN.
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Old 07-09-2007, 05:50 PM   #9  
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I agree with Robin 100%. I too had to and wanted to give it up totally. I cannot eat just alittle pasta or small amount of potatoes or 1oz of chocolate. If I would have one bite I would eat the whole thing. I do not feel deprived. I rather have asparagus then chocolate. I rather have a great big salad with Newman's honey mustard dressing then spaghetti. You will get there too. I only eat what is on my plan. If I want something and have not planned for it I tell myself I can have it the next day. I wait then if I still want it I plan for it in my calories the next day. I usually don't want it anymore. You can do it. We are and we do not have anymore willpower than anyone else. I never let myself get hungry that also helps
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Old 07-09-2007, 08:14 PM   #10  
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I refuse to give up my starchy sweets totally, but the longer I'm on my weight loss journey to easier it is to limit them to "occasionally". But I have to tell myself NO whenever I reach the point of jumping out of my skin because I want to eat - mainly because I know that if I'm at that point I would have no control at all if I were to eat! At that point I either exercise, get out of the house completely (making sure I don't take any cards or money with me!) or go to bed.
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Old 07-09-2007, 08:37 PM   #11  
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I'm with melsfolly -- I won't give up anything, I simply refuse. However, I find it easier to limit the "bad" stuff the longer I get into this journey.

I know my opinion on this stuff is an unpopular one on 3FC, but I always voice it because I want to remind people that you CAN lose weight without giving up the things you like to eat. If it's completely impossible for you to stop at a small amount of chocolate, then by all means: don't eat chocolate. If you'd rather not live a life that doesn't include chocolate, though, I'm here to tell you that it's possible to lose weight and still have the things you love. It's all about the calorie counting (or WW point counting, in my case).

I'm certainly not saying that we shouldn't try to kick the habit of emotional eating. If I feel like munching on a large volume of food, I'm certainly not going to turn to Doritos just because they're not officially forbidden. For me, it has been about a total commitment to ONLY consuming a certain calorie level each day. Yes, I have the occasional "free" day where I don't stick to that (which may slow my weight loss a little but it keeps me sane). But on most days, I stick to that calorie limit no matter what. Usually it's all from healthy food, but quite often there's some chocolate in there, I'll be honest!

The reason I always post about this is the following: For YEARS, I tried the no-sugar, no-processed, no-whatever thing. I would start it, I would make that commitment, and I would give in because it just seemed unreasonable for me. Obviously, lots of people find success that way, and that's wonderful. I'm not one of them. I just always want to remind people that they have options. You do not HAVE to eliminate those foods, but if you keep them, you have to COMMIT to your calorie level. Well, you have to do that anyway.

As an example, I've been increasing my dairy intake lately because I'm always lacking in that area, and I've started including full-fat chocolate milk. Crazy, huh? I read in a few places that full-fat dairy can help with infertility problems, for one thing, and I also saw that some studies are saying chocolate milk is one of the best after-workout drinks. After a long run, I have a nice glass of chocolate milk. It eats up lots of my calories, sure, but I get health benefits AND it's delicious. Woohoo!

Also in the dairy world, I've been craving REAL ice cream lately. So I bought a container of Breyer's Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, the real stuff. My taste buds know the difference between that and all those 35-calorie fudgsicles I've been eating (even though I do love those). Well, the last two nights, I've fit a 1/2-cup serving of that in. It's small, but it's delicious and I enjoy every bite. It's enough.

I'm not saying you can't enjoy healthy, whole low-calorie foods. I just had a lovely spinach salad for dinner and then berries for dessert and it was wonderful. I'm just saying ...if it's not necessarily just emotional eating but you're missing foods you love and you know you have the strength to limit yourself, you CAN do it. I've done it for a year and lost over 100 pounds. It may have gone faster if I'd stuck to broccoli and skipped the 100-calorie packs, but it's all about the tradeoffs you're willing to make.
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Old 07-09-2007, 08:53 PM   #12  
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I think you have gotten some really good advice, but one thing that hasn't been mentioned yet is prayer. I really truly believe God is interested in EVERY aspect of our lives - including our emotions and their ties to our weight. He cares - and when no one else will listen, HE will! And...He will help us through those tought times like nothing else will. I know He has been a true source of strength and help for me and He will be for you too. Just like a cigarette isn't a true antidote for emotions, eating isn't either. And truthfully, they both have adverse effects on our bodies because it usually means we are eating when our bodies really don't need the nourisment.

So...with all that said, I will say a prayer for you. You can do this, Rhonda! I know you can - no matter what the emotions scream at you, this is definitely do-able. I had a very rough day today myself, actually the roughest day in a long time - but I'm NOT allowing myself to get off track. This is key - to not let small setbacks put us back to square one. My emotions were a little weird today too - but I'm going on with my plan as though nothing happened today. If we can learn to forgive ourselves when we do have bad days, I think that would help our emotions tremendously. As many have already said, it is so easy to feel defeated when we have a crazy emotions day and so we give up completely. We don't have to do that. Just pick up where you fell down and move on.

Of course, you already know all of this; I'm not trying to come across as a know-it-all...just a friendly reminder.

Take care, hun. You can do it! Please send a private message any time you need someone to talk to. It is important to get things off your chest once in awhile. If you don't have anyone there physically to talk to, try talking to God. Then, if you want to confide in any virtual friends, we are all here for you.
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Old 07-09-2007, 10:14 PM   #13  
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There is nothing I can say that hasn't already been said. I just wanted to give you a hug. I do believe we all understand!
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Old 07-09-2007, 10:39 PM   #14  
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I don't want to stray too far off topic here. I just want to say that I think it is absolutely vital to pinpoint your weaknessess and then do your best to find a way to work around them, whatever they may be. Of course for everyone the weaknesses will be different - and of course the "cure" for it will be too.

There is not one "correct" way to lose weight, we all must find what works for ourselves. The good thing though is, if we find one thing's not working too well, we can change it up and try something else. The important thing is to keep trying. Keep plugging away at it. Don't give up. There is no magic pill, per se'. But there is a solution. And when you find that solution, it's the very next best thing to that magic pill.

Rhonda, just know that we are all pulling for you. You can hear it in each and every response.
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Old 07-10-2007, 07:47 AM   #15  
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Emotional eater here!!
I also have to agree with everyone else.
Most of the food I binge on are not in the house, when I do feel like binging on something I start giving myself a pep talk, saying I have lost almost 30 lbs, I feel better, do I want to ruin this?? It is very hard but it does get better
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