10 ways to stop BINGE EATING or OVEREATING.
Binge eating disorder or Overeating is the most common eating disorder and is associated with numerous health risks. It was acknowledged as an eating disorder in 2015. People who suffer from binge eating disorder or overeating, frequently consume large quantities of food at a fast pace. While doing so they overlook everything including physical comfort. A binge eating episode or an overeating episode is followed by the release of stress hormones and a free radical attack along with negative emotions which disrupt mood. Let’s look at 10 ways to stop Binge Eating or Overeating.
#1 Know your Triggers:
It is important to understand what triggers a binge eating episode or an overeating episode. Is it the aroma of fried potato chips or is it the sight of a burger or is it something else? A trigger can be in the form of smell, sight, taste, touch, sound, event, particular time of the day/ night, place or even thoughts. Once we figure out the triggers that cause binge eating or overeating, it’s best to avoid those triggers so the occurrence of such episodes can be controlled.
#2 Avoid eating from Containers:
The challenge with eating from containers is that it is difficult to measure the quantum of food that we are consuming. It’s best to avoid eating from containers. Next time, instead of eating ice cream from the carton or chips from the pack, try eating in a bowl or a plate. Take one serving at a time so that each time you remind yourself of the amount of food you are consuming and can avoid binge eating or overeating.
#3 Focus on Quality Food:
Calculate your macro nutrition and micronutrition requirements and stick to them for as long as you can. Take quality supplements if required but, remember no supplement can replace whole food. Avoid refined foods, sugary snacks and simple carbohydrates as these are linked to inducing addiction to food increasing the probability of binge eating and overeating.
#4 Maintain a Journal:
Maintaining a journal to note the type of food (refined, sugary, whole etc.), amount of food, time of the meal, duration of the meal and quantity of food will help to keep a watch on the calories. Make an entry in the journal each time you have a meal. Going forward, it will help plan your meals – avoiding the ones that are not required, optimising portions, adding substitutes, correcting the timing and duration etc. Maintaining a journal and following a meal plan will help avoid binge eating or overeating.
#5 Avoid Sugar and Simple Carbohydrates:
Sugar and carbs are neither required for survival nor performance. They spike insulin and lead to lifestyle-related diseases like diabetes. Sugar and carbs are comparable to cocaine addiction and it is best to switch to a healthier diet like the ketogenic diet to avoid binge eating or overeating.
#6 Eat to Live and not Live to Eat:
In the animal kingdom, all the animals eat to live. Of course, there is a preference between foods but, no animal lives to eat. Food is essential for survival and performance but, there is more to life than food alone. Spend time doing things you like other than eating. Try something new to divert your attention from eating. In short, follow the philosophy of eating to live rather than living to eat and you will easily overcome the urge to binge eat or overeat.
#7 Do not ban Favourite Foods:
It will be good to eliminate unhealthy favorite foods from our diet but in most cases, it is not practically possible. It is okay to reward ourselves with our favourite snack once in a while, provided it stays once in a while. Another option would be to find a healthier alternative to unhealthy and addictive snacks. For example, if you are addicted to eating potato chips, try replacing them with a handful mix of roasted almonds, salted watermelon seeds, pumpkin seeds etc. Instead of ditching cakes, try replacing them with keto chocolate cake. Banning certain foods will never help. Try substituting them with healthier alternatives for overcoming binge eating or overeating.
#8 Avoid Distractions while Eating:
Distractions like watching TV, chatting on your mobile phone or working on the laptop while eating shifts our attention away from eating. It makes it difficult to track the quantum of food being consumed. Distractions have shown to provoke binge eating or overeating.
#9 Eat Slow:
It is important to slow down, chew efficiently and enjoy the food we eat. There is no hurry. Eating slowly can reduce cravings, increase fullness and reduce feelings of hunger. Eating in a hurry will only increase the probability of binge eating or overeating.
#10 Drink plenty of Water before Meals:
If we drink plenty of water before meals it helps occupy space in the stomach and ensure there is less space for food to occupy. Thus, we are less likely to binge eat or overeat after consuming water.
Now we know the 10 ways to stop Binge Eating or Overeating.
It is recommended to seek medical help if things do not improve even after trying all the 10 ways to stop binge eating or overeating.