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Make “Healthy and Whole” Your Mission - Part 2

The battle with eating disorders is not about food, but rather the emotions or spirit being out-of-alignment. However, there are environmental adjustments and behavior changes that can be made in an effort to lessen the external triggers that may cause us to loose our abstinence. The fewer temptations we have the more are able to focus on the real work at hand, moving through our emotions, releasing them and returning to health and wholeness. Continuing on from part 1, what follows are some suggestions you can employ to change your habits and set yourself up for successful eating disorder recovery.

- Organize your eating, and eat consciously. When you don’t have a plan, it is easier to give in to an emotional impulse and eat haphazardly, which as you have probably experienced, just keeps you locked into a life of binging and purging and other eating disorder behavior. Give your day structure. Structure makes it easier to take the time to enjoy each meal as a conscience act. When you eat while watching tv, reading a book, Facebooking or tweeting, you loose the experience of eating and are left longing for more food later on – thus, more binging and more purging.

- Learn the difference between hunger pains and emotional pain. If you feed yourself to avoid or cover your feelings, it is possible that you have lost the ability to recognize physical hunger. Purposely delay your scheduled mealtime so that you can feel what it is like to be hungry. Being familiar with this feeling will help you be a better judge of why you’re eating. Identify the reasons why and occasion’s when you eat due to emotions. If you’re not hungry, why are you eating? If you are always eating, why do you always feel empty? What do you actually need to feel filled? Answering these questions will help you identify your emotional triggers. Keep a journal and write down what you are feeling rather than anesthetizing yourself with food.

- Brush your teeth. It may sound silly, but food never seems quite as appealing when you have toothpaste mouth.

- Don’t skip meals. When you skip meals you loose track of when you actually become full and may end up gorging yourself into another cycle of binging and purging.

- Make yourself a cup of hot tea; the warm liquid in your stomach can help you feel satisfied and nurtured.

- If you find yourself binging during the day at the office, make an effort to avoid areas like the vending machine. Bring healthy snacks and meals of your own to keep at your desk. Do whatever you can to steer clear of anything that might throw you off course and send you to the bathroom for long breaks, as this will impede your journey to health, wholeness and eating disorder recovery.

- Don’t eat while in the car, or when you are on the go and you don’t have the time to have a proper meal. The more relaxed while you eat, the less likely you will be go into a binge. If you are tempted by fast-food joints on your daily commute to and from work, find yourself a different route if you can, even if it adds a few minutes to your daily drive. You can’t stop for a cheeseburger if you don’t go by the fast-food chain. It’s worth a longer commute to have this temptation off your path.

We will continue with Part 3 tomorrow. We invite you to join to conversation, add your own suggestions, "like" us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!


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