No one likes to talk about binge eating or feeling out of control with food. It’s SO personal, a bit embarrassing and flat out frustrating. And the number one thing I want you to get if anything out of reading this blog post, is that you are NOT alone feeling this way. Trust me, SO many women who DM me on Instagram and work with me struggle with this too.
And binge eating is something I struggled with for so many years myself. I would skip out on social events from feeling bloated post binge, try to make up for eating too much by over-exercising and engaging in other crazy behaviors I’m not proud of, and feed the never-ending cycle by restricting food like crazy the next day. I felt so alone and isolated in this private world because I didn’t tell anyone that I was struggling. I was embarrassed, ashamed and felt like there was something wrong with me. And truth be told, binge eating is something so many women struggle with, but are afraid to talk about. So I’m changing that today and giving you three of my top tips on what to do AFTER a binge. Because let’s face it, it’s TOUGH to stop cold turkey, and having strategies in place to help you cope with the aftermath of a binge, understand WHY you binge and develop a plan to remove yourself from a binge in the future is key to success.
So without further ado, below are my top three post-binge strategies:
1. Get comfortable.
Chances are you’re feelin’ pretty uncomfortable after a binge. Feeling sick stuffed is never a fun feeling, so instead of making yourself feel worse by eating more food or beating yourself up for “messing up,” give yourself some grace. Put on your favorite pair of slippers, bundle up with your snuggie, light a candle, play relaxing music and allow yourself to calm down. Take a deep breath in and count to three. Exhale and count to three again. Repeat this process until you start to calm down and feel more at ease.
While you’re getting all cozied up and comfortable, grab a journal or piece of paper to jot down your feelings and gain insight into what lead you to binge. Think through your day from start to finish. Did anything in particular trigger you to turn to food for comfort? What were you feeling before you binged? What emotions were you experiencing? Were you angry, fearful, happy, sad, stressed, bored, etc.? Honing in on your true feelings and understanding them will help you better understand how to treat your underlying issue (what you’ve been covering up with food). This might take time to fully understand your emotions, or feel uncomfortable as you learn to deal with your emotions head on. So be patient with yourself! Once you have a grasp on what lead you to binge, develop a strategy to reduce your chances of binging the next time a trigger presents itself.
3. Do not restrict food the next day.
We all have the biological need to eat. We literally have to eat to stay alive! And when food is restricted for too long, it’s only natural for your body to respond by wanting to eat as much as it can when you finally allow yourself to eat. This is also known as the restrict binge cycle (it’s a real thing). But good news… this biological overdrive can be combated by eating enough throughout the day! And as hard as it might feel to eat the day after a binge, it’s necessary so your body can truly understand and trust that food is available, not feel deprived and reduce the biological overdrive that leads so many women to binge. I promise you this is necessary to break the cycle once and for all! A general recommendation is to eat at least three meals and 2-3 snacks each day. But everyone is different, and the numbers can truly vary from person to person.
And there you have it, my top three post-binge strategies. Comment below and let me know which strategy you are most excited to implement!