There is a thin line between ‘foodie’ and ‘binge eating’ and we can often miss the signs when we have slipped into binge eating mode. If you listen to your body, it is constantly giving you signs about your health. Binge eating is your body indicating an unhealthy lifestyle.caloi
I remember I was binge eating when I was finding it hard to end a relationship that wasn’t working and another time, when my insomnia and anxiety had hit the roof! Initially, I did miss the sign simply because I wasn’t aware that I was looking for another unhealthy route to combat my primary issues.
So quickly, let us discover some of the reasons that might lead to binge eating – it is in the genes (we see one of our closest family member do it), crash dieting (creates hormonal imbalance), having a scarcity mindset (hence we do cheat meals), fighting anxiety or depression, low self-esteem or a habit created over time.
Fear not because this can be reversed in a way that we don’t even remember the version of us that did binge eat. However, aggression is not the answer. Love is.
1. Know your root issue: We are fearful to know what our deeper issue is, so we constantly put tape on the surface! We fear because we are worried, we might not be able to handle it or deal with it. So, what is the root issue that leads you to binge eat? Breathe, sit in silence and reflect inside your self – nobody knows this answer except you.
2. Work on the root issue: Do you binge eat when you are anxious about something? Are you facing depression? Does it happen specific time of the day that needs to be addressed? Are you crash dieting? Are you worried about your image or have low self-esteem? Work on your root issue with a professional. While this takes time, it will have to be dealt with one way or another to eliminate binge eating.
3. Positive food connection: In order to lose those inches, we develop a connection with food that is toxic or negative, obsessed with sugar free calories. We do not like what we see in front of us during mealtime, so when nobody is looking or right after finishing a meal, we tend to eat a lot more food to make up for this feeling. Balance is the answer. Wholesome meal is the answer. Extremism needs to go! We cannot be eliminating food groups or have severe food restrictions that bring aggression in us. The brain will automatically create a desire for these food groups then.
4. Protein as a satiating nutrient:Very few know that our cravings hit the roof when we do not have enough protein, that leads us to packing sugar free calories.. We, then, tend to binge eat on carbs until we make up for the protein requirement of the body. It is by far the most satiating nutrient! Moong dal chilla is one of my favourites and I have observed when I have enough protein, automatically I don’t have the urge to overeat! Chana dal, paneer and various items made out of moong such as khichu and dal preparations will make you feel this instantly! We need 1 gram of protein for every kg so work on this equation to add protein in your nutrition plan.
5. Reduce cortisol: We are constantly in flight or fight response because of our lifestyles – either complicated relationships, excess work pressure, over analyzing so on and so forth. It increases cortisol and we might need long term routines and habits to work on it. Movement is one of my go to for this! The minute I am feeling this, I will put on a great podcast and start walking, either at home or out. Meditation, music, coffee break with great conversation, sweating it out, deep breathing to name a few are other ways we can reduce cortisol. If we do not reduce cortisol, naturally we will go to other toxic habits such as binge eating to increase dopamine.
6. Self-love and perspective: As children, because of our education system and how we celebrated ourselves, we formed deep conditioning that our worth comes from our achievements and external validation only. We were given food or sweets/ chocolate when we did well in school, or we performed in front of our family members and they clapped for us. Now we crave this validation to love ourselves. This could require working with a coach to know who you really are and to know what self-love really means! ‘Perspective is everything’ isn’t just a phrase – it is inner power that shapes our next action steps. So, get the right perspective of what true health and living life is.
My ‘binge eating’ self seems like my last lifetime! Knowing that this is past me has given me confidence to achieve a lot more in life and spread that goodness to others as well. There is nothing we cannot overcome if we are determined we can and that too without any invasive measures. If you are an emotional or binge eater, please do not give up or label yourself as a failure – believing you can is the starting point of letting go off this habit.
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