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Old 12-19-2010, 04:21 PM   #1
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twelvepercent HB User
What do I think binging helps me accomplish?

I have been on a weight rollercoaster for the last 6 years, I was anorexic for awhile and then started to get into weight lifting and began eating healthier.

However during all of this I would have episodes of binging, in which I have cravings I can't control and once I give into them I cannot stop- I will eat anything and everything I can find (including foods I don't even like and would never eat under normal circumstances). Even once I am full, well past the point of physical discomfort, I continue stuffing my face, either until the food is all gone or until I can force myself to go to bed. These episodes usually occur at night, but are not restricted to a certain time of day.

It seems as though I am using the food to avoid other issues in my life, but I cannot pinpoint anything specifically. I think it might be related to social anxiety- I get anxiety in most social situations and it seems I would rather be at home alone binging than out socializing.

I can usually follow a diet pretty well, until I have a binging episode that sends me into a downward spiral of guilt, regret and self loathing.
And even though I am conscious of the situation and aware of how binging will make me feel afterward and have already decided that it is something I do not want to do, I still do it anyway...
What can I possibly be thinking? I know nothing good can come from it- It is only going to stop me from reaching my health and fitness goals, it is going to make me feel bad abuot myself and negatively affect my self esteem, It is going to make me physically ill and leave me in a fog of guilt, regret and frustration.

My only defense against binging has been the All or Nothing approach. I am so strict with my self to avoid any opportunities for slip ups or relapses into binging episodes. This can only work for so long. And if the cause of binging is psychological, I really wish I could figure it out so I can work on the real issues and control my binging and my life.

Thank you for listening and any advice or support anyone has to offer would be much appreciated

 
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Old 12-21-2010, 04:43 AM   #2
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knittingirl HB User
Re: What do I think binging helps me accomplish?

Hello twelvepercent,

I have suffered from anorexia but not from bulimia, but I do know a fair bit about the body’s physiological reaction to being deprived.

It sounds like you go through periods of restricting heavily (following a diet, or eating ‘healthily’, but at any rate restricting either the type or the quantity of food that you allow yourself to eat).

Your body is an amazing thing and, whatever your brain is telling you to do, your body will strive to stay healthy. This means that whenever you restrict the type or quantity of food you allow yourself to eat through dieting, your body goes into ‘starvation’ mode. Basically it panics. Your body doesn’t understand that it’s on a diet, all it knows is that all of a sudden it isn’t getting enough energy to keep its basic functions going. It starts to send out stronger and stronger signals to you that it needs food until finally you break down and ‘binge’. The bingeing is a biological response to the deprivation.

Your bingeing is not a sign of weakness, it’s not a sign that you’ve failed. It’s also, most definitely, NOT a sign that you need to go on a diet or restrict yourself further.

You need to teach your body that it will CONSISTENTLY get enough energy and nutrients by eating a good amount of food on a regular basis. I strongly urge you to read up on Intuitive Eating (there is a website and a book, the book is written by Evelyn Tribole). It focuses on building up a healthy relationship with food and learning to trust your body.

You are constantly fighting a battle against your own body, and yet your body is a vital part of you. Learn to love your body, every bit of it – pick one thing about your body that you like (maybe your eyes, or your hair, or your hands, whatever it is) and focus on that today, really appreciate it and appreciate that it is part of you. Throw out diet books, throw out any media that tells you that you must be a certain way to be beautiful. You are beautiful NOW.

Katie xxx

 
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twelvepercent (12-21-2010)
Old 01-01-2011, 10:13 PM   #3
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ette2500 HB Userette2500 HB User
Re: What do I think binging helps me accomplish?

twelvepercent - I think binging is a self-loathing thing. You binge because your mind flips to that instead of dealing with whatever you need to deal with. Then, you suffer from self-hatred after eating so much, so you rid it out of your system. The release of the food feels good. But shortly afterwards, you feel awful for doing it. I think you do have some issues that you need to make yourself aware of, so you can cope differently; find different ways to handle the stress when it's triggered. I'm sorry if this doesn't help very much. But you don't sound like you are severely bulimic (which I was). You need to find a happy medium in your life. I know it seems like you go from one extreme to the other, but you need to find a happy medium.

 
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twelvepercent (01-02-2011)
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