Life without Anorexia

My motto is
'Dont let the sadness of your past & the fear of your future ruin the happiness of your present'

My life at the moment is completely different to how it once was. I spent 5 years sick with anorexia nervosia and depression as well as struggling with self harm and overexercising. I spent 2 years in different treatment centres.
And since 2012 i have been declared healthy from my eating disorder.

I have been blogging for 7 years, and my whole journey is written in my posts. I now represent healthy and happiness. I want to show anyone struggling that it is possible to recover, no matter how hard it may seem.

I now blog about recovery, my life, veganism and positivity!

If you have any questions leave them in the comment section as i am much quicker at answering there, otherwise you can always send an email: lifewithoutanorexia@hotmail.com

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Binge eating

This is something which i have written about, but feel that it is something almost taboo. People dont mention it. They like to sweep it under the carpet, yes it may be shameful. Especially if you have/had anorexia. When you've gone from anorexia to binge eating, it is the complete opposite. When you have anorexia, you have complete control over what you eat, and then suddenly you start binge eating...  and youve lost all control over food.

Recently i have had a few emails about this, wondering if i had tips or advice, or if i myself have gone through something similiar.
  And infact i have. Now, in this point of my life, i can say that i have. But before, i was very ashamed, i didnt say anything to anyone. I kept it to myself and i felt i was spirlaling down, losing all the control which it had taken me so long to regain.
    
Now i know, i have learned that, it is common that it can happen. Whether it lasts a few weeks, or a year or more... that varies for everyone.
   And it doesnt have to happen... i think it depends for everyone. What you are going through and how well you cope with certain situations.

For me, my 'binge eating' lasted maybe 2 months. It wasnt everyday, not even every week. Maybe 4 or 5 times a month. But it was awful. The anxiety and self hatred which followed... it was making me depressed.
  
Ok, i guess ill write a bit more about my experience.
    It was at the start of this year, roughly February/March (i think...?) And i was stressed out with school. Usually when im stressed, i stop eating. And it started with that i stopped eating due to stress, and i wouldnt eat enough during the dáy.
  So then in the evening, i would end up eating loads... because my body needed energy. I wasnt getting enough sleep and not eneough energy in the day, so it resorted in that i overate during the evenings.
   My 'binge' was like, 2 bowls of yoghurt with banana and granola. Or 3/4 cheese sandwiches. So i guess it wasnt 'that much'... i think there is a certain calories amount that you eaten in a certain amount of time to be considered a binge...
  but for me, that was  binge. And it felt awful. It was like, i couldnt stop myself. I ate, until i was about to get sick and the anxiety was tearing me apart from the inside out. And i did, return to my purging habits. Just to lessen the anxiety a bit.
   This was awful. I considered myself healthy and recovered. I was going to school and was just lke any normal person. I was only going to Mando once or twice a month for a check up. I had freedom.
  And it felt like i was abusing the freedom, that was why i didnt say anything. I didnt want to go back to Mando. I didnt want to lose my freedom.
  At that point i still had 3/4 kilo to gain until i was normal wieght, so i tried telling myself that my 'binge' was fine. That it would jsut help me gain weight... but it didnt work. I still wanted the food 'out of me'.
  It was a dark circle. Because i binged at the evening, i decided to barely eat anything for breakfast or lunch to compensate... this was very sick thinking. My anxiety was stronger, and i barely wanted to go to school.
   I cant quite remember what i wrote during this period. But i didnt even write anything in the blog, apart from feeling like shit. Because i didnt want to seem a 'failure'. Of course, now i know i wasnt. That now i can say that i took myself out of that 'dark circle' by myself. That i was stronger then my ED. Because it was my ED tryingt o take control during a stressful period.
  
After a while, c.a 2 months. i decided, enough was enough.I knew where that path would lead me.... right back to an inpatient spot at Mando, with no freedom. And i didnt want that. That was one thing which scared me into getting ebtter, and sometimes that is what we need...something to keep us moving forward!
  So i decided to go back to my meal plan. I hadnt eaten acccording to a meal plan in roughly 6 months. I was supposed to at that time, as i still had to gain weight. But i felt that i could rely on my stomach. Of course, in that period of time. I couldnt... my stomach wasnt giving the right signals.
  So i made the very wise decision of returning to my meal plan. It wasnt fun. The anxiety made me not want to eat. But i knew better then that. And i did follow my meal plan.
   That decision was one of the best ones i made.

I know some of my binging was due to boredom aswell, so it was hard during that time when i was like, do something else... dont think about food. Dont binge.. you wont feel better. I felt like i was some fat person who needed to lose weight at that time... but i wasnt. I actually started losing wieght during this time, hence why i started getting more anxiety....

Binging, is nothing to be ashamed of. Its nothing good though, but dont be afraid to say that you have/had. (Maybe not shout it out) But i mean, if you are going through this sort of situation. Dont hide behind your pride or ED thoughts. Talk to someone, get help. Because BED is an ED aswell, and it is very bad for your health.

But onto tips... on how to avoid binging?
   For me, going back to a meal plan helped me alot. It made that i had certain times i would eat, and certain thigns i would eat. So it was no choice for me. I would eat what was on the meal plan, no more no less. And that worked... un time i decided i was strong enough to get rid of the meal plan again, and since i havent binged.
    When i went back to the meal plan it also meant that i was getting a bit of everything into my diet, carbs, protein, dairy, fibre, veggies etc...
  and one factor which lead me to binge was that my body was craving carbs. That was something which unknowingly i cut out of my diet... and that backfired.
  So i have learend from my mistakes. To not cut carbs or any nutritional factor out of my diet.
   So there is another tip from me, dont cut something out of your diet.

Also, allow yourself to eat if you are hungry.... you know sometimes when you tell yourself no your not allowed bread... then you end up thinking about it? and then it goes a week and suddenly you are so hungry, its late and you havent had dinner and you just gorge down 5 cheese sandwiches (ok, that might not be considered a binge...?) sometimes when you tell yourself your not allowed something, you might end up overeating on that one thing.
  Remember balance and moderation.

Of course, those times when you are just bored and cant tell hunger from boredom? Yes those times. Im sure we have all experienced them, and no, they dont have to lead to binges, but they can lead to mindless snacking through out the day. Which i guess, if you need to gain weight... that isnt a bad thing.
  
  When you are just  bored hungry. Find something to do. To take your mind off your boredom. Avoid the kitchen. But drink 1-2 glasses of water.
  Go for a walk. Take a shower. Dnace to music. Do something creative. Call a friend. Clean.
  Just like anxiety,.... for me, it doesnt help to just sit still with my thoughts, i need to do something. Whether its go for a walk/run and take my mind off things. Or sit and cut and paste in my vision book. Or even just take a shower to relax....
   Different things help different people.

Remember that BED is also a mental thing, and there is usually a reason why you binge/binged... so try to find the factor why?Is it because your stressed? Because your not eating enough during the day? Is food a comfort?Have you taken something out of your diet...? Those things are things you can fix.
   There is of course emotional eaating, but i think that usually craves a therapist... or someone to talk to to find a solution and the answer to your problems.....

Just remember that you are all beautiful and strong and you can overcome any obstacle in your life.
  I took myself out of that situation on my own accord. I knew what i was doing was wrong. That that was just another form of ED, and i didnt want that. I didnt want to be sick. I wanted to be normal and have a good relationship with food.
   So remind yourself why you dont want to be sick, with no form of an ED!!!

6 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing this, Izzy. You made some very good points and you also gave me an idea for my next post xxx

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  2. Thank you so much for writing this!! It helps so much! And you are so strong for taking yourself out of it!!!

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  3. And that's why i love you!! ( And there are more things of course) You are honest and very very inspiring !!!! Thank you for posting that ! :) Take care ! Hope we can talk soon ! :) xxx

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  4. I meant - *It Was not every day* (Ive fixed now.)

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  5. This is a great post Izzy, thanks for it:) I read it a while ago but I just discovered The (Brit)-Italian Girlfriend has written a post about bingeing too and she refers to yours - so I wanted to thank you for writing it, it's all great advice and very helpful to someone with still so many anxieties around food:) xxx

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  6. just so you know, binges are usually defined now as 'more than someone would usually eat in a comparable amount of time' accompanied with feelings of a loss of control and guilt :D

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