5 Simple Steps to Stopping a Binge | Stop Binge Eating

When you have a negative feeling, the thought of comforting and drowning yourself in food sounds like a good idea. Your mind will be taken off of dealing with your emotions and food will heal… Well… at least for the first five minutes of a binge. After that, you will continue to eat, but not because you are hungry. You will start to notice that your original feelings of sadness or other reasons will come back, along with new feelings of guilt because you just ate so much food. Is there a way out of this crazy cycle?

Of course there is!

Here are five steps that you can start implementing into your daily life to conquer a binge.

The first step is to feel deserving of yourself. You need to feel that you are worthy enough to change your binge eating habits. Only after you do this and improve your self-esteem can you win the war over Binge Eating Disorder.

The second step is to throw out all foods in your house that you like to binge on. Remember, if the food is not readily available to you, it will be harder to binge. This also means when you go grocery shopping. When you don’t purchase foods that you binge on, it will be easier to conquer a binge while you are at home. You want to make it as hard as you can.

The third step is to buy a journal (it can be electronic as well). I like to use the Day One app in the App Store. In your journal, you are going to record all binges and what feelings were present during the binge. Record all details including the time, day, what you ate, how much you ate, and how you felt before and after the binge. Journaling is a great tool because this will provide insight to you as to why you turn to food like you do. This will help to narrow down your binges so that you will be able to see any similarities that happen when you binge.

The fourth step is to find a healthy replacement. Simply stopping a habit (especially a lifelong habit) will be difficult. Not to mention impossible unless you replace your bad habits with a healthy one. For me, when I get bored, I like to watch YouTube fitness videos or health documentaries. It’s hard for me to do something unhealthy when I am constentlt learning about health. I also make it a habit to do some calisthenics while I am watching my favorite shows. It makes it much harder to eat out of boredom if I am busy working out. The point is to occupy your time with something you like and enjoy instead of trying to fill a void with food because food can never feel that void (at least in the long term).

The fifth and final step to stopping a binge is to talk about it. Talk to a friend or anyone else that you can trust about how you are feeling. If you are upset, vent your frustrations out to them. Just having someone listen will be very helpful to you. You will feel that a weight has been lifted from you after you get everything off of your chest.

When we hold our emotions in, the emotions will continue to build up negative energy to the point that it will explode and you will give into temptations. By talking things out, you release any negative pent up energy that can fester causing you to reach for food, to numb temporarily numb your emotions. This in turn just causes more negative emotions because you beat yourself up for binging only to repeat the cycle again and again.

Are you Eating to Fill a Void?

Are you eating for emotional reasons?

Maybe you eat to celebrate a positive achievement or to punish yourself for some type of failure. Can you remember times as a child when you snuck food or sugar because you were scared, sad, or upset? If any of these sound like you, you may be eating simply to fill a void in your life. It’s easy to do, because there are so many great tasting foods but sadly some of them are actually NOT healthy for you.

Filling a Void With Comfort Foods Can Be Unhealthy and Dangerous …

 

A lot of the “comfort foods” commonly used as an emotional crutch are unhealthy, and even dangerous when taken in excess. So if you are eating for the wrong reasons, emotional, mental, or spiritual ones, you could be treating your problem with food which in turn creates even more issues in your life.

You begin to live in a dangerous cycle where you feel bad about your emotional eating habits which leads to depression and low self-esteem.  You then treat this pain by eating… again… so you stay in a never ending emotional roller coaster. In a very short period of time a healthy individual can suffer drastically and significantly, both emotionally and physically, by eating for the wrong reasons.

If you have just lost a loved one, you may turn to food to soothe your feelings. Research has shown that fat, sugar and salt make us feel good which is why most of the “comfort foods” we enjoy as a child are loaded with sugar, fat, salt, or a combination of all 3.

 

Dopamine, Endorphins and Their Effect on Emotional Eating

 

The problem arises when you gorge yourself on foods heavy in carbohydrates, starches, sugars, fats, and salt. The chemicals in those types of food naturally release endorphins and dopamine in your brain. Endorphins are a “feel good” chemical, and dopamine slowly lowers the effect of fat, sugar-filled and carb-rich foods on your brain.

This means that in order to soothe yourself, you require more of these foods to deliver the same response over time. In this way, eating to fill some void or a missing component in your life can very naturally, and very gradually, lead to obesity, health and cardiovascular problems, poor circulation and a host of physical ailments.

Coping with loss or any other major void or absence in your life is very difficult. Get help from your friends and families emotionally. Turn to a psychiatrist or food addiction specialist for more answers. The next time you feel the urge to eat, ask yourself if it is for emotional or physical reasons. Mistreating an emotional problem or void with food usually leads to poor health, as well as more physical and emotional stress.

 

Is There Hope?

 

Emotional eating effects a lot of people, including me. I never realized I had this issue until recently. It really peeks its ugly head out on weekends. I find myself in the kitchen pantry looking for something to munch on, even when I am not hungry… I get so bored sitting at home doing nothing that I just need to do something to fill the void of boredom. After I binge I end up reeling in an emotional rollercoaster of guilt because I know better, but I do it anyways.

That guilt causes me to eat even more to “feel better” which just ends up making me feel worse. Trust me when I say,  you are not alone… Over the years, I have found some tips and tricks to tame my emotional eating habits, making them much less frequent.

Now, I want to help you get your emotional eating binges under control. If you are ready to start getting your emotions in check and get your binge eating under control take my FREE Stop the Binge eCourse.