Binge eating goes much deeper than just overeating. More often than not, physicians and dieticians treat the symptoms not the underlying reason for binge eating. Our article puts together our thoughts on how to stop binge eating.
Identifying the problem
When we see an overweight person, what we are looking at, is the symptom. If as an overweight person you exercise and go on a diet, you are merely treating the symptom of the problem. After all, what does exercise and diet do? It melts away the fat; it does not address the root cause of fat accumulation, i.e. the binge eating habit.
Binge eating may also be caused due to extreme diets. Most commercial diets will almost starve you to death. After a few days of following the diet, the dieter usually gives up and goes on a binge – eating the very foods they were told to avoid.
Here are 7 golden steps on mindful eating – how to stop binge eating:
1. No Diet
Yup! You read that right. Dieting is not how you stop binge eating. Modern day studies have revealed that diets simply do not work. Typically, a diet is something that prevents you from eating what you like. It causes your mind to rebel. Diet is therefore something that is doomed before you even start on one.
So does that mean you can continue eating all that junk? Absolutely not, you have to stop it but not through diet. Instead, you segregate the good from the bad and drop the bad slowly. For example, instead of a bag of fries every day, reduce it to a bag of fries every two days and then every three days and so on until you bring it down to a bag of fries once a month.
You do not have to change the rest of the good stuff you eat.
2. Size counts – use portion control plates, bowls and glasses
These days everything is oversized. Even a small pizza has enough calories to power up a horse! Of course you must have your pizza. But share it with someone. Our expert nutritionists say that to satisfy your craving for pizza, you merely have to eat a small piece and you will be satisfied. The rest is just excess baggage you end up carrying around your tummy or your butt.
So, to stop binge eating and its effects, reduce the quantities.
3. Stopping binge eating isn’t easy but it is not that tough either
Our mind is exceptionally powerful. One half says you want your soda, your fries and your burger and you want them big. The other half of your mind puts up a token resistance and you are soon heading to your favorite snack joint.
You need to strengthen the other half. You don’t have to say “No”. Say “yes, I can have all that but just a tiny serving of each”.
4. To err is human
It’s okay to binge occasionally. But keep these instances to less than one every few months.
5. Have a friend check on you
Inform a close friend that you’ve decided to stop binge eating and that he or she should check your progress regularly. We all crave for social acceptance. Your friend’s criticism will be all the support you need to stop binge eating.
6. Seek expert help
If after a few months of trying you have not succeeded in reducing the quantum of food you eat, seek expert help. Don’t wait until the situation gets so out of hand that a crane has to lift you off the chair.
7. Form a team
If you have friends who also need to stop binge eating, form a self-support group – it works!