Top 5 Ways to Start Breaking Free From Binge Eating
Binge eating is an increasingly common type of eating disorder that affects both men and women, typically involving recurring episodes of consuming large amounts of food past the point of fullness. If this sounds like you, try these top six ways to start breaking free from these patterns.
1. Pause Before You Eat
Binges often begin in your mind, well before any food comes to the table. To change your mindset before a binge begins, try to pause for at least 60 seconds and ask yourself a few questions, like “Am I actually hungry?” or, “Is there something else that would feel good to do instead of binge?” You’d be surprised at how much simply waiting for one minute can change your mindset.
2. Ditch the Diets
Many people fall into binge eating because they are overly restricting themselves on low-calorie diets. This can backfire, leading to overeating later that day or night. Instead, focus on fueling your body with healthy and nutritious foods, like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats. (You’ll also notice it’s more challenging to binge on these foods compared to nutrient-poor foods, like chips, crackers, or sweets.)
3. Write It Down
If you’re feeling a binge coming on, writing down everything you’re feeling can help to prevent it. No one has to see this; it’s just for you to put down on paper what’s going through your head. Also, you could try writing down how you feel after a binge and re-read that when you think you might overeat.
4. Be Kind to Yourself
If you do end up binging, the most important thing is to not be too hard on yourself. You can write down your feelings, but then move on and don’t punish yourself for what happened. There’s always another day.
5. Seek Support
No matter what stage of a binge eating disorder you are at, you can benefit from seeking help. Whether it’s from a licensed therapist who deals with eating disorders, a Registered Dietitian, or a trusted friend or family member, letting people help you through problems you’re having is not weak — in fact, it’s often the strongest thing you can do.