Chicks in Control Overeating? Binging? Share uplifting support and gain control!

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Old 05-19-2011, 12:02 AM   #1  
Corporette diet
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Default NYTimes: To stay in control, think about eating that cookie. REALLY think about it.

I am really intrigued by the NYTimes article about a study in which subjects told to think about eating M&Ms -- to imagine eating 30 M&Ms, one at a time -- ended up eating fewer real candies afterwards. Basically, we become satisfied of something (for example, cookies) not because our stomachs are satisfied, but because our minds are bored of cookies. We're "stuffed" but we still have room for ice cream! Actually, it's just the experience of eating cookies that we're full on. But if we just imagined eating the cookies...

The science: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/14/science/14tier.html
Humorous account by a writer who lost 10 lbs in a month (on vacation!) "imagining" himself eating everything he wanted: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/18/di...gine-that.html

(To read past the firewall, delete the extra stuff that pops up after the ".html" part of the URL)

I just tried the "visualization" diet with a brownie -- interesting results. I really craved it after thinking about the first bite, became bored by the imagined sensory overload by the fifth bite, soon required a Google image search to remember what brownies should taste like, craved brownies again immediately after looking at pictures, didn't care for them after much scrolling & looking at brownie-porn for 15 seconds, and then found my attention directed to any stray non-brownie foods in the image results (e.g. ice cream) after that...

I don't have a real brownie around right now to test this strategy, but I imagine I wouldn't really want any of it: the idea of eating one actually repulses me a little, which is a really strange feeling.

Could thinking about and visualizing eating our trigger foods really, really thoroughly actually help defeat cravings for them in the same way that eating a lot of something makes you sick of it? The science says our brains might actually work that way. To put it crassly, if people can be desensitized to porn, why not food porn?

Last edited by lackadaisy; 05-19-2011 at 12:05 AM.
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Old 05-19-2011, 12:48 AM   #2  
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I read about this study (or a similar one) in a recent Women's Health magazine. It said to imagine eating the food to prevent yourself from binging on it.

I will give it a try! But the article says to have more detailed (not vague) thoughts about eating the food. So it's not as easy as just sitting and thinking about the food. I think you also have to use visuals like the M&M pictures that were shown, so internet as to be around in order to try this.
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Old 05-19-2011, 05:29 AM   #3  
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weird though, because theres a snickers bar in this house and ive been thinking about it since yesterday, and i still want it! but maybe im not following the steps and actually imagining eating it?
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:38 AM   #4  
Corporette diet
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Yeah, it seems like 'anticipation' and 'visualization' are completely different things -- if you think about the snickers bar as a goal, you want it more, but if you imagine yourself eating it until you get bored of imagining it, your cravings will first go up and then go away.

I used it last night to avoid eating cereal (one of my diet trigger foods) and to avoid chocolate this morning. Not sure whether this will work in the long run, but it's working now.
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Old 05-19-2011, 08:58 PM   #5  
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Fascinating!
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