Why can’t I stop eating? How to avoid compulsive eating

Think back to the last time you ate as much as you thought you were full. Did you tear up a big cake to celebrate a friend’s birthday? Offering potatoes and sweet potatoes on Thanksgiving? Or are you just at home, at the end of a hard day? How do you feel later – just angry that you gave yourself a stomach ache? Or are you not tormented by guilt and shame?

It is common to eat a lot every now and then. The same goes for eating for reasons. “From the moment we were born, we were fed with food, paid with food, and so the relationship with food is very normal,” said Michelle May, MD, author of Eat what you love, love your food.

People who eat a lot can use food in their own way to ward off bad thoughts. As a result, they often feel that they are not eating properly. They think about food all the time and feel guilty, ashamed, or sad after eating. “That’s very different from what someone would think later, say, to eat a great dessert,” May said. “You may be full, and you may regret getting that last piece of cake, but you are not completely ashamed.”

Some people who eat a lot have a disorder called binge eating disorder (BED). People with BED eat a lot of food in the short term and feel guilty or embarrassed afterwards. And they do it often: at least once a week for about 3 months.

Not everyone eats a lot of food. You can eat many meals a day, before you end up sitting alone. And you may not always do it, but there is only sadness, loneliness, and anger.

How to get started?

In some cases, people eat a lot without thinking, such as sitting down with a backpack in front of the TV at night. But more often than not, it is the result of heart problems. Getting a good physical image can be a big game.

For many people, eating a meal is part of the cycle that begins with a solid diet. May was called “eat, regret, do more”. You may start a diet because you feel bad about your weight or weight but you find it very difficult to stick to it – even if you use the food as a solid. Eventually, you hit a breach and binge on “forbidden” foods, then guilt and shame ensue, and taboos start all over again.

It can be hard to break. “People who say they don’t have food often have feelings about‘ good ’or bad food,” said Marsha Hudnall, president of Green Mountain at Fox Run in Vermont, a center. for women who struggle with overeating. “But if you have something fun and comfortable and comforting, and you make the limits, it’s even better.”

Can people “add” food?

In recent years food has become a popular idea among some scientists. According to those researchers, certain foods high in fat, sugar, and salt are additives, which alter the brain similar to those produced by prescription drugs. Studies have shown that animals that can eat sugar cane rats, for example, can develop symptoms of dependence.

But the concept of food addiction remains intact. For one thing, the usual treatment for addiction is denial, and it can’t work with food. In addition, “food is a very powerful component of the binge eating cycle,” May says. “From that point of view, it’s against listing certain foods that are bad.”

There is no doubt that food can stimulate the release of good chemicals into the brain, says Hudnall. “But it doesn’t make food an additive. There is evidence that the real – binge cycle – is the cause of the symptoms of addiction, not the food itself, “he said. Some researchers have suggested that the term” eating addiction “is more accurate. rather than a “food addict.”

How can I control my diet?

Get help. It’s hard to stop eating on your own, even if you have deep root problems, says Robin B. Kanarek, PhD, a psychiatrist at Tufts University. Working with a counselor can help you unravel the issues – such as poor body image – that may be guiding your behavior.

Avoid labels. “Make sure you’re not a bad person doing bad things,” May said. “Self -labeling can be a self -fulfilling prophecy about staying in the circle.”

The same goes for labeling foods. “Food is food – it’s not‘ good ’or bad,” Kanarek said. “It’s hard to dispel those strong beliefs, but research shows that if you eat what you think is ‘bad’ food, you’re more likely to eat it later.”

Take a break. When you want to eat, take a break and ask yourself: Am I hungry? “Sometimes people think a lot What’s up they want to eat but they don’t stop and ask themselves why they want to eat, ”said May. If you use food as a tool, you may not be exposed to information that indicates hunger or satiety, and it is important to restore your knowledge to your body.

Change your environment. “It’s the usual routine on autopilot,” Hudnall said. Making a tweak to your environment can bring your mind back to your character and give you a chance to make a more informed decision. For example, Hudnall says, “if you’re always in a dining room, move to a different room – or stay somewhere else.”

Give the will – in humility. Banning foods will allow you to eat a lot later. If you really want something – even if you’re not hungry – allow yourself to have a little.

Eliminate solid foods . “Great food and solid food are two sides of the same coin,” May said. “Depression can be a source of stress levels such as depression, anger, and anxiety.”

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