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GWENNIE56 Posts: 51
2/3/14 9:56 A

OOPS... I did have a few bad choices this weekend and went over my calories. I do notice that my body doesn't like some of my choices. Well, this girl is right back on track now. Sometimes we fall. I am just getting back up! emoticon

VIVIANKAY3 Posts: 357
2/3/14 9:46 A

Well I did binge yesterday (super bowl) with friends over that have no weight issues! by the end of the evening I felt very crappy, very bloated and tired. I was thankful that it was over and promised myself that today would be a brand new start! Let go of what has been done and move forward!

VIDABUENA2010 Posts: 121
2/3/14 6:15 A

Great topic for morning after the Super Bowl. I only had one pupusa, the Salvadoran food we love to make and eat, and my husband had five, a couple too many. I was satisfied, both physically and emotionally, and relished the feelings.

When I screw up, I do think about the trigger, make a plan to hopefully avoid that mistake again, and move onward. emoticon

MICHELLE73101 Posts: 317
2/2/14 10:52 P

You've just got to accept it then get right back at it... Sometimes after a binge it helps to kind of reboot. Feel like you have a fresh start.

Try this plan for getting started right NOW. It helps you snap out of the "oh what the hell, I already ate half the carton of ice cream I may as well keep eating" mindset that is killing you:

It is SO much easier than you think.

NURSEMARY1961 SparkPoints: (1,932)
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Posts: 56
2/2/14 12:52 P

Yesterday I sort of binged. My daughter and her husband and my granddaughter were in this weekend. Both of my daughters, granddaughter and myself went shopping. We went out to lunch. I didn't make the best choice but not exactly the worst either. I also had a couple glasses of wine. I did not criticize myself too much. I just woke up this morning with a better plan.

SWEETLILBLUEYES SparkPoints: (43,930)
Fitness Minutes: (24,060)
Posts: 339
2/2/14 12:02 P

I had a little binge last night. The worst since starting SP. I didn't feel very good yesterday, so I thought if I just ate the right food I would feel better. Luckily I didn't have any cake in the house last night, I love cake, and I really wanted some. I had 6 cps of popcorn, some cheddar cheese, and a vanilla almond granola bar, going several hundreds of calories over my goal. Finally I went to bed. This morning I got up and dutifully recorded everything "extra" that I ate. I recognized that I seek comfort through food when I don't feel well physically or emotionally. I doubled my time on my exercise bike today, and resolved to eat within my goal range today. Just today. One day at a time. Maybe next time I'll be more aware when I don't feel well and recognize that overeating will not help. I didn't pause in my plan. I tracked my food, I did my exercise and moved on. Because yesterday is gone and I can't un-ring that bell, But today is here, and today will be fantastic!

2/2/14 3:43 A

Recommit and start over. If it is early enough in the day, get in some physical activity to burn some of the calories. There was a reason you started this journey. We all get off track from time to time. Just don't allow it to derail you completely.

ARDISSA SparkPoints: (12,524)
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Posts: 272
2/2/14 12:23 A

Wow! So many great ideas and suggestions. Thank you all. I find so much inspiration here on sparkpeople. This was just the topic I needed to read about.

I have been a binge eater from around the age of 6 and am now 52. Last year, I was lucky enough to have been part of a "Binge Eating Disorder" group through our local hospital. I learned many new skills that took me a while to get the hang of but I am finally adopting them into my life.

The 1st thing I had to do was to establish a wake and sleep routine. My sleep habits were all over the place. When I was on routine I had more energy to eat healthier, when I was off routine I was too tired and lacking in energy to plan proper meals. I was in a cycle of overeating all day and binge-ing at night.....and staying up late to pack more in. I learned to establish a better wake and sleep routine. I wake at 7 am and go to bed at 10 pm (most days).

"Mechanical eating" was the 2nd step I had to take. "Mechanical eating" means scheduling meals and snacks 2-3 hours apart. Basically 3 meals and 2-3 snacks (depending on my blood sugar numbers). I adopted this skill and find it works best if I set reminders on my iPhone to alert me to my next "feeding" (lol!). I am not really hungry for some of my snacks but I eat them anyway and it makes a huge difference in my level of satisfaction....and then I don't feel I need to eat in the evening hours.

I dont deprive myself of any particular foods. In fact I try to fit favourite foods into my meal plan ahead of time, and use my Corelle divided plates. I eat the veggies first and really savour the moderate serving of healthy richer foods. I am also trying to eat more consciously/mindfully. I drink water with a squirt of lime before and during my meal, taking cleansing sips and pause to put my utensil down after a few bites.(Note: if you want some great organized meal planning go to
A few other tools I use are meditations and affirmations, and learning to move my body more, not just exercise but fun things like putting on some tunes and dancing around the living room, grab a hairbrush and sing like I was the next hopeful American Idol. I'm not afraid to take out my coloured pencils and colouring book if that's an activity that pleases me. I used to say "when I reach a certain number on the scale, I will do this or do that" I now choose to be happy now, not at some imagined other time. And I have stopped trying to be perfect (who do I think I am anyway?). I am gonna stick with just being my best imperfect self. One-day-at-a-time, and just for today.

TEAROSE22 SparkPoints: (30,671)
Fitness Minutes: (10,050)
Posts: 633
2/1/14 9:38 P

With an overwhelming amount of weight lost, and still to go, I struggle with certain food and beverage triggers.

Every once in awhile I give in somewhat, other times I can talk myself out of the food.
When I do eat something, not really a great nutrition choice, I force myself to not punish or
Critique myself. I just start over immediately. Don't abuse yourself. God gives us a clean slate every hour, every day.
The amazing thing is that, when I indulge in a food or drink, the deeper I am into my weight loss, the less hold the food has in controlling me. And the foods don't really taste that great
When it is all said and done. Example....
I just had to have one of the new Arby's premium cod sandwiches. The Lenten rollout on TV has haunted me,neither that good lookin' fisherman bringing in the catch of the day. I got the sandwich, and it was not nearly what I expected. 530 calories, 930 sodium....again! Never. Just not worth it!

2/1/14 4:22 P

I try not to beat myself up about it, pick myself up and start fresh the next day. I've learned which foods and emotions cause the binges. I try to feel the emotions that caused it. That helps too. emoticon

MIA-MORSEL Posts: 791
2/1/14 1:49 P

belch............and get on with it, I suppose emoticon

KELLBEAN Posts: 103
2/1/14 12:31 P

feel sorry for myself until it gets sickening...then I get real - I start eating well and exercising again..just get back up when you fall - it's the best way to start over. Fail, Learn, and try again.

BROADBRUSH Posts: 1,806
2/1/14 10:27 A

my body screams at me and that gets my attention. however some times i have trickle down effect and keep on having some of the things i should not - maybe for a day or so - i know it is definitely tied to amount of time to recover from the stress induced cause .
it takes longer and longer to recover from such things as they are ongoing daily and pretty much 99% of the time.
i vasolate back and forth between no food and too much food - or no food and then bad choices of foods.

1/31/14 5:42 P

Sadly, it takes me an average of 3 days to come down from a binge.

Most often it happens when I am not eating the recommended calories - as recommended by SP in accord to my weight-loss goals and exercise.

I do much better when I stay within all the recommended ranges for carbs, proteins, fats and calories.

I don't know if this helps you or not as I am not able to see what your nutrition tracker looks like.

Keep on trying - you can only fail when you quit trying.

MICHELLE73101 Posts: 317
1/31/14 5:32 P

I think the most important thing you can do is accept it. I mean REALLY accept it. Be honest with yourself, write it all down. It is OK. I promise. Your goal is a healthy lifestyle, right? So inevitably, you will have unhealthy moments.

And think about this - one day or one week of healthy eating isn't enough to make you thin, so how can one binge make you fat?

1/31/14 10:53 A

I keep logging the calories. Including the binge! If it's a day later, I put it in the best I can remember. It's a real eye opener to see just how many calories you can consume in one binge. After awhile, my binges got smaller and less frequent. Works for me is all I can say.

GARDENGIRL54 Posts: 803
1/31/14 10:11 A

You may try thinking of those treats as part of a "fun day" but not the way you really want to eat to feel your best. Forget it and get back to tracking what you eat BEFORE you eat it. That can often help you talk yourself out binging in the first place too! emoticon

KJEANNE SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 2,093
1/30/14 11:04 P

First: sit with your emotions. You want to figure out what got you binging.
Second: decide how you'll cut back on your calorie intake for the next few days to make up for the extra calories you ate.
Third: got on with your life

JUSTJUDEATTUDE SparkPoints: (87,972)
Fitness Minutes: (71,138)
Posts: 6,700
1/30/14 10:50 P

You FORGET it and forgive yourself. Just do the best you can and be the best person you can be. Just pull yourself up by your boot-straps and continue on to your goal.

PEGGIE0203 Posts: 779
1/30/14 10:50 P

For the first time in many days I stayed within my caloric limit today. Every time I saw the tray of strudel at work I wanted to eat one. Instead I imagined one stuck to my middle. Instant temptation relief!

FUNNYGIRLJESS SparkPoints: (10,337)
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Posts: 449
1/30/14 10:16 P

once the guilt sets in, I remember that I'm not perfect and never will be, I try to forgive myself and understand why I did what I did...what am I so emotional about?
I try to get a good night's sleep and have a better day of fruits and veggies.

1/30/14 6:05 P

I have a big problem with night time snacking. After dinner I want some thing sweet so I get in to hubby's deserts and pig out. They are Weight Watcher treats but still at 150 calories each they add up. So what I am doing now is sticking a piece of gum in my mouth and chewing that until I am ready to go to bed. In fact if I am having a hard time I will even chew it in bed until I am ready to roll over and go to sleep.

ISLANDRGURL808 Posts: 31
1/30/14 2:24 P

I was just looking for this! Cause I have been off the wagon for 4 days now! I wont give up, but its a constant battle!

813SLIM SparkPoints: (39,950)
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Posts: 813
1/30/14 12:34 P

Thank you for this thread. I have been struggling with this and up to now, have not found a forum for it. Great suggestions and support.

MINDAA Posts: 10
1/30/14 12:19 P

Yes, I struggle with an unlimited supply of sweets at work, too! A huge goal for me this year is to cut them out.

Maybe for a week or two, to help curb the craving for sweets, you can take a break from counting calories through the rest of the day and let yourself "binge" as much as you want on predetermined light, filling foods like fruit, veggies, popcorn, yogurt, raw almonds, etc.

Eating a whole bag of (extra light) popcorn is about the only thing I've found that feels almost as satisfying as a binge... but doesn't leave me feeling terrible.

But I find that I have to use the "just don't do it" strategy, also. To curb my cravings, I have to commit to avoiding even a taste (or else I'm done). The first few days are REALLY difficult and I get pretty grouchy. I try to use mental tricks like saying, "no thank you candy, I prefer to eat something else," or telling myself that food isn't for me, it's for others.

But ultimately, I just have to power through it. And eventually, the craving fades... Sugar becomes less satisfying, and I'm more aware of how terrible I feel after I cave in, and want to avoid that feeling.

1/30/14 10:11 A

A few suggestions:
* Join the 'Living Binge Free' team here at Sparkpeople.
* Make sure you eat enough, and enough healthy foods with lots of nutrients (like vegetables and fruit)
* Make sure you eat enough during the DAY - eat more during the day and you will have less cravings at night.
* Make a rule to not eat anything at night after say 6 or 7 pm, except maybe a limited portion of 1 fruit and x spoonfuls of yoghurt; and nothing else. If it's a rule you won't need to doubt and debate yourself, thinking 'will I have something more, yes or no, and if yes, how much'. That kind of thought may lead to having 'just a bite' and then end with a binge.
* Eat at regular times so your body gets used to being fed at set times. Leave at least three hours of no eating after a meal.
* After a binge, don't skip meals. Even if you eat only a little, do eat at the time you'd normally eat a meal to keep the regularity.
* Forgive yourself, dust yourself off, and get back on track after the binge. Take a walk outside, drink plenty of water or herbal tea, and move on.

Edited by: CHRISTINA-TODAY at: 1/30/2014 (10:14)
1/30/14 9:19 A

A couple things...first CONGRATULATIONS ON LOSING 50 POUNDS! That is amazing and no small feat. Remind yourself of that. Every day. It had to feel good to get to that so tell yourself that when you are tempted. I find drinking hot things helps with my urge to snack. FIlls me up and kills the sweet tooth. I concur with the post that suggested locking things up. Also, can you chew gum? Suck on a lollipop that takes forever?? Lastly, be kind to binges are worst when I am being critical of myself so remind yourself that you have already been successful so there is no reason you can't still be. Good luck.

1/30/14 9:06 A

So many great replies, sadly this is something many of us struggle with in our own ways.

For me what's helped lately to stave off binges is deciding that I don't eat sugar. I know this is not forever, but until I can learn more balance and wean myself off of binges, staying away from this major trigger has helped.

To do this successfully I bring 3 kinds of nuts/seeds to work with me, portioned out in baggies. If I'm snackish I pick the one that's most appealing to me and that has kept me from going crazy on the junk food. (I like pistachios, pumpkin seeds, almonds and pecans)

1/30/14 8:17 A

I have the same problem and saying "no" is not working. So I started to plan to have the snacks that I want as part of the whole meal plan. What I do is plan the whole day the night before, including the night snacks. Then I pack everything I will take to work the night before, when possible (if not, in the morning). Now I don't deprive myself. BUT I do have temptations on some nights and I will have a double portion of the scheduled snack and do okay because they are healthy and I am exercising daily, including weight training with dumbbells at home. I hope this helps. emoticon emoticon

SSHHAARROONNAA SparkPoints: (10,968)
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1/30/14 7:15 A

Google baby carrots, you might think twice about what your snacking on, try celery.

GEVANS7 SparkPoints: (288,240)
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Posts: 2,120
1/30/14 5:38 A

You've gotten some very good advice in this thread. All I can add is that you are not alone. After having a calorie deficit for many days, I will have my binge as well. If I start to binge - it happens- I will give myself 30 minutes and end it. It's always carbs that trigger it. One cookie can lead to the whole box then I want salt. Eat more throughout the day - that seems to be key for me.

BEACHGIRL328 Posts: 3,063
1/29/14 7:16 P

For me a binge is an addiction because it is a full out binge and not oops I hate that whole bag of chips etc. so I have had to learn how to handle myself so that when I get annoyed or stressed I can recognize it for what it is and deal with the emotion instead of just substitiing unhealthy food for good food because it can easily turn bad for me so I pray and meditate, I also have little quirky things I try to do if it gets a little rough for me that other people can't see so that if I am at work and the stress is high I have a religious medal I keep in my pocket and I rub it to take my attention off what is going on in front of me.
I live in south florida so I can still go for a walk at night and get some fresh air and I have even started taking my BF down to the beach at night, there is nothing better than to listen to the waves and to watch the moon dancing on the water to help "distress" someone. I am also learning how to draw so I can keep my hands busy and out of a bag or box of something.
The way I get out of a binge when I still have a slip up is to start saving my receipts and look at the money I waste on garbage food, I now have a rule the lights are always on now when we eat even if we are watching a movie so I know what I am eating and it makes me acknowledge what I am putting in my mouth.
When I finally face the reality of what I have done I throw the food out. I could take it to work but I have no desire to promote bad eating to others and also because how do I know that a box of Oreos wouldn't be starting a coworker off on a binge of their own?
I also will not allow junk food in my home anymore and I made the decision no more delivered food. If we want a pizza I can order whole wheat pizza dough from the grocery store and we'll have that and if my BF wants Chinese or Indian food he can have it at his house without me.

AZULVIOLETA6 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 3,293
1/29/14 5:57 P

Eat more protein, fat and fiber earlier in the day. Stay well hydrated.

PEGGIE0203 Posts: 779
1/29/14 5:42 P

Great thread. I'm struggling with bingeing right now, and have gained almost 5 pounds since going on vacation earlier this month. I know that my own mindset can be my best ally or my worst enemy. I need to keep my focus on healthy eating and pay attention to what my body is really needing, as opposed to what I'm craving. I also find that keeping WELL hydrated is a big help for me.
Thanks for all your ideas.
emoticon emoticon

ACHANSO Posts: 1,073
1/29/14 3:59 P

Wow, it's interesting that I'm not the only one who finds a bag of baby carrots to be a must-have snack at work!! It's amazing how MANY of those lil guys you can eat for very few calories :) Plus you're getting all the nutrients/vitamins in carrots.

Just remember, as another blogger wrote, each pound is just 3,500 calories or so.
If you mess up, just try to see it as that. Just an instance. Try not to fall into the "I blew it so I might as well eat whatever." I know that's easier said than done though.

SARAHSTEELIO SparkPoints: (4,035)
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1/29/14 3:09 P

It looks like you know the triggers: availability of sweets, time of day (evening), and isolation. What about something as simple as having a bag of baby carrots with you EVERY day, so that when you just want to put something in your mouth, you have SOMETHING? I'm giving advice as if I'm a pro, which I am most certainly NOT... but having a bag of baby carrots to "binge" on has certainly helped me in my binge-y moods.

As far as getting back on track after a binge, well, welcome to my life. Sometimes I wonder why I joined sparkpeople all together, since I clearly am not committed enough to actually stick with it... But, almost miraculously, I DO. I keep logging back on, I keep blogging, I keep reaching out and writing honestly about my difficulties. This is the longest I've gone back and forth between bingeing, doing better, bingeing, doing better: at this point in the journey, I usually give up and just keep bingeing. I think my best advice (because I really AM a pro at this part), is taking everybody's advice and just be nice to yourself: you are not a failure! You are a human dealing with very human issues. Just keep coming back so we can all deal with it together.

GOODASHBADASH79 SparkPoints: (483)
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1/29/14 2:12 P

I like to do 2 days of detox after a binge day. Drink plenty of lemon water to flush out toxins / alkalize your body, go for a walk or a run, take some anti-oxidant supplements, enjoy a green smoothie with wheat grass, and get your enzymes from 1 fresh fruit snack a day (pineapple is a good one). Also, for a couple of days, eat only lean protein like fish or chicken as your main meal. This will leave your body feeling clean and will make you think twice before binging again. We all have binges, that’s a normal thing. It just takes a little extra work to un-do the damage & get back on track.

LULUBELLE65 SparkPoints: (37,106)
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Posts: 1,169
1/29/14 1:37 P

You've gotten a lot of good advice about healthy snacks, I would add that drinking a lot of water helps me, as does drinking hot beverages. I have at least five different kinds of tea in my desk drawer, and I make a little bit of a ritual about having my tea. I use a pretty mug, and stop what I am doing and just enjoy drinking it. I would actually recommend that for anything that you consume at work. A lot of times we eat mindlessly and are not really aware of what we are consuming. If you put what you are eating on a plate, track it and then eat it, you are less likely to look up and realize that you've just eaten a jumbo candy bar or half a bag of cookies.

Also, try brushing your teeth with a really minty toothpaste. Most things taste pretty bad after that.

If you do have a binge day, figure out how many calories you ate, and est that many fewer over the course of the week. if you eat an extra 1,000 calories and you're supposed to eat 1,200 to 1,500 a day, if you eat 1,300 for the next five days, you are at the upper end of your limit for the week, not over at all.

NANLEYKW SparkPoints: (76,244)
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1/29/14 1:33 P

Papillon, the first thing I would ask is whether you're eating enough during the day. If you're restricting your calories too much, it will leave you hungrier and more vulnerable to the sugary snacky stuff later.

Then, what's the source of the foods you're trying to avoid? Are they vending machines or candy in bowls on people's desks or something else? Can you bring in healthier snacks so that when you do get hungry, you have something tasty and convenient that won't blow your calorie budget for the day? The better prepared you are to handle the temptations, the better equipped you'll be to deal with them.

And finally, for those times when you do give in, you have to forgive yourself and move on. It happens to everyone. Let it go and remember that tomorrow is another day, another chance to make good choices.

MAMAADJUSTE SparkPoints: (1,179)
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1/29/14 1:24 P

I've struggled with binge eating my whole life. I've gone though long periods where I had it under control but have recently been binging more frequently. I have come to the conclusion that I will always be a binge eater. I take it one day at a time. I started tracking my binges on a calender. I wake up each day with a new positive attitude. I may have messed up the night before but today is a new day. When I make it one day with out binging I'm really proud of myself and repeat positive mantras in my head. I do struggle with feelings of extreme guilt after a binge and thoughts of just starving myself the next day to make up for it. But I try my best to leave all those negative feelings behind when I wake up in the morning. Keep track of your binges and start blogging on here when you have one. What you ate, how you felt, and what could have triggered it.

Sometimes mine are stress and sometimes it's b/c I went out to eat and indulged a little which leads to the I blew it attitude and might as well eat all the forbidden foods. Some may say don't have forbidden foods but I can't handle moderation. I'm an all or nothing person. Avoidance of all trigger food is the only way I've been successful in the past.

JULIACOLLINS62 Posts: 1,704
1/29/14 1:21 P

emoticon question. This thread has been a help to me too. I have been binging do to a stressful situation in my life. I'm an "all or nothing" type person and I find I need to come to the root of that characteristic to help myself in many areas of my life. This is a lifetime journey and you have success in your past to motivate you in your future. I find thinking and writing about how I helped myself in the past to suceed helps me be aware of the correct planning for myself in the Here and Now.
I wish you the healthiest day/s possible. Sincerely J

MBRANDO SparkPoints: (78,510)
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1/29/14 12:42 P

I am a binge eater, I can consume 5000 calories in one meal when I get in that pattern. Then I get depressed and bing eating turns from a day into weeks and has even turned into months before. But I had an aha moment a little over a year ago that has helped me limit my binges to a sitting. One pound is 3500 calories. So, during one of my 5000 calorie binges what I have done to my diet, and ALL that I have done is gained a pound. One little pound. I haven't ruined my hard work from the past or even from the day. I have just gained a pound that day. True it will take me a week to get that pound off so it is a small set back but I haven't ruined all the good that I did before the binge. It helps me from wallowing in depression. I get back on the horse. So, even if you go all out and have a day where you consume 10000 calories....well the average person consumes 2000 calories a day to maintain their weight so essentially you have consumed an excess of 8000 calories or about 2.3 pounds. It isn't the end of the world, it is a small set back, a drop in the bucket in the grand scheme of things.

I don't know what to say about the late night eating, I do it as well. I have found I cannot go to sleep without going over my calorie limit, sooooo....I lie to myself. I don't record all of the calories my heart rate monitor tells me I burned AND I overstate what I eat telling myself that I don't truly know how many calories are in what I have just consumed and I would rather be safe than sorry. In the end I hope I haven't actually gone over my calories even though my tracker says I have.

I hope this helps.

OHCINDY Posts: 137
1/29/14 11:42 A

I am a binge eater and work has always been my downfall too. In my case, I am my own dealer though because I work in a private office so I can essentially sit there and eat non stop. It became a habit and I believe that certain foods trigger binges for me (sugar, simple carbs), so I have removed all of those foods from my office and stocked it with low carb snacks and sparkling water. (I am also eating only low carb during the day and it's really helping to stave off cravings)
In the past, if went on a binge I would just keep on binging because I felt so hopeless. It's a depressing place to be at, but probably the best line of attack is to just let it go and move on. Perhaps if you pack along some snacks that are healthy and that you know won't set you off, avoid the other stuff and make it a test of wills with yourself, you might notice over time that you won't even think about those foods.
I don't know what kind of work you do, but part of the reason I eat like a maniac at work is avoidance. I was avoiding certain tasks and it was really starting to pile up, then I'd have to work late to do things I should have been doing all along. Some kind of escapism/denial I think. Anyway, I was very out of control in just about every aspect of my life for the last few months, and I have found that getting back in control of everything: my eating, my work, my studies, etc. has really help me feel less hopeless and stronger.
I hope you can break your binging cycle and get back on track and just leave it behind you. It is not fun, I totally can relate to how you feel.

CPOKEYRUN Posts: 662
1/29/14 11:13 A

I know with me, once I have a little bit of sugar crap, I lose all self control and start stuffing my face with I can definitely sympathize! If stuffing your face is what you want to do when you're all alone with no one to witness the carnage, would it work to bring in a thing of low fat (not the butter bomb kind, obviously!) microwave popcorn, and maybe a bag of baby carrots or something, and when you're ready to hit the snacks, make it so you can eat and eat and eat the popcorn and carrots, and stay away from the sugar snacks? Because the popcorn and carrots aren't so bad and you can plan around that during the day, leaving enough calories to account for that.

Then once you get used to not having the sugar all the time, try and gradually wean yourself off the large amounts of popcorn and carrots (or whatever snack would work for you) until you get yourself used to a more normal sized snack?

Good luck!

MISFITONFIRE SparkPoints: (2,598)
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1/29/14 11:06 A

I also work in an office with tons of food around all the time, so I can sympathize... it's HARD. I've gained a lot of weight in the two years I've been working here, but the past couple of months (which are usually the worst time of year) have actually been a lot better since I started focusing on my mental and emotional states.
I've noticed that my biggest trigger is stress, which I have a TON of right now. But I've been working for the past couple of months on learning how to manage my stress, by reading books about how to treat myself well and let things go, meditation, and even recently started to practice Tai Chi.
I notice that I eat much better and am calmer throughout the day since I've been taking the time to tend to my mental and emotional needs. In the past decade, I've lost 25 pounds, then gained 40, then lost 30, then gained 50. I've decided that I'm not going to be ready to lose the weight for good unless I figure out the emotional roots of my weight gain, so that has been my first priority and seems to be helping a great deal.
I think keeping a journal is a great idea, so that you can keep track of what triggers the binges. On the craving level, I like to keep sweet, sugar-free gum around (think Trident Layers or Extra Dessert Delights). I find that as long as I'm not hungry, it will more often than not take care of my craving for sweets. Don't let yourself get hungry and before you go for the sweets, stop and think for a moment about how you're feeling. That would be the time to write it down and work through it, which can prevent or at least give you some measure of control before you go for the food.
Good luck and let us know how you're doing!

1/29/14 10:39 A

PAPILLON950, don't hate.....I know EXACTLY how you feel, and how that happens. I get in the exact same situations myself. So, I really have to focus in this area as well, and am going to try using some of the suggestions in this thread. thank you for putting your question out there.

1/29/14 9:16 A

The first thing I do is remind myself that I can and have gotten past this before. Next is sit down and decide what exactly is triggering it. Is it just the availability of the unhealthy food or is stress from work your trigger. Stress has always been a huge trigger for me. After that focus on the fact that you can and will gain control of this. Begin writing a plan.

At work my issue was a great deal of stress combined with limited access to food. I could easily work up to a twelve hour day without an actual break and without being able to leave the building. So I needed to plan for that. I kept a log and figured out about what time the stress really hit (for me it was right as the day shift and evening shift overlapped, because each would complain about what the other did or did not do).

Now that I knew my trigger was stress, and when it was worst, I packed a bag of veggies and some hummous each day. Sometimes grapes or other fruit. I then planned a fifteen minute interval that I declared to my staff was complaint free. Complaints, unless it was a customer issue, had to wait. So in the middle of my most stressful hour of the day I would sit down for a quiet controlled healthy snack.

This may or may not work with you situation, I'm not in your shoes. But the basic premise I hope helps. Journal, with times added. Figure out your trigger situation and time. Find a way to take control of that time frame and trigger.

Please feel free to message me if I can help in any way. Binging can be difficult to get past, I know its always been an issue for me too.

ANARIE Posts: 13,184
1/29/14 1:22 A

I hope you won't think of this as "don't do that," because it's along those lines but pretty different.

Don't put yourself in that situation.

This is happening when you're alone at your workplace after hours. Unless you're very lucky and you're just wildly in love with your job, you're feeling exhausted, lonely, probably nervous because it's a little creepy to be alone in the building, and probably resentful that you're still working when others have gone home. It's almost inevitable that you're going to want sweets; humans are genetically programmed to seek out sweet foods for energy and comfort. You're not "giving in;" you're responding to basic survival instincts.

So you have to figure out a way to avoid triggering those instincts. You need to protect your mind and body from a situation they think is threatening and unfair. Why are you working so late? Can you step back and do a little less? Can you take work home? Can you go in early instead of staying late? (That's actually usually a good career move, anyway. Boss doesn't notice that you stay after s/he leaves; boss definitely notices if you're already there and deep into the day's work before s/he arrives.)

If you can't avoid the late hours, can you reduce the availability of snacks and sugar? Could someone who leaves before you lock up the break room on their way out? Can you just tell yourself that they did? If you bring your own healthy snacks and keep them at your desk, will you be able to stay away from wherever the junk food is kept? Is there a gym in the building so you could run down there and do a 5-minute spin on an exercise bike once an hour instead of eating a snack? Or could you stash a novel, a video, or a favorite magazine halfway between your desk and the break room so you stop there and read/watch for 5 minutes instead of eating?

All of this is kind of like being a parent to yourself. If you have a child who acted out when she was placed in certain difficult situations, you would probably try to avoid putting her in those situations, or at least try to prepare her and help her figure out alternatives to the negative behavior. If you take your kid into a toy store and *then* tell her she can't have a toy, of course you're going to set off a raging tantrum-- and you'll probably end up giving in and buying her the toy just to shut her up. But if you tell her ahead of time that you're going to the store to get a present for her cousin, and that you won't be buying her a toy today but she can look at the toys and think about what she might want when it's her own birthday in two months, you'll probably get in and out of the store with one toy and a perfectly calm child. So maybe you can establish a rule for yourself that every tenth day you work overtime, you can have two snacks. On the other nine overtime shifts, you can check out the vending machines or the treat closet or whatever, and plan out what snacks you really, really look forward to having when it's your "treat day."

Basically, be as kind and understanding and fair with yourself as you would be with your own child or with a friend in your same situation. You wouldn't get angry and frustrated with them for giving in to natural behavior in a difficult situation; you would work with them to figure out how to keep them out of that situation. Be a good mom/friend to yourself!

LADYSTARWIND SparkPoints: (83,751)
Fitness Minutes: (65,809)
Posts: 4,983
1/29/14 12:38 A

The best 'control' I've ever found is to purposefully plan and eat a healthy snack so I'm not mindlessly, really hungry.... A dietician I worked with told me to NOT GO OVER THREE HOURS without eating!! That made such a big difference in how I felt...for me, about 15 g of carb and 5-10 grams of protein really help. Try some fruit and nuts, or cheese (if your limits allow, I go ahead and eat the full fat version...); cottage cheese; greek yogurt.... or even a half of chicken sandwich! And enjoy it with a cup of water or hot tea....

I think its a mindset of taking positive actions to empower yourself....rather than trying to deprive yourself....

And if it doesn't work, and you end up eating what you know isn't the best for yourself--don't panic. Look at your Nutrition levels over several days as an average, and work towards meeting your Nutritional needs....
take care, and hope you find what works for you!

Edited by: LADYSTARWIND at: 1/29/2014 (00:41)
PAPILLON950 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (5,527)
Posts: 97
1/29/14 12:07 A

I'm falling into this pattern that I really, really hate. It's given me back almost twenty of the fifty pounds that I had worked so hard to lose, and it leaves me with anger and frustration at myself for having "given in" yet again.

Throughout the day I do great. I eat healthy and count my calories, but at night it seems like all of my self-control and binge on sugar. This happens mostly at my work, where sugar and snacks are readily available in large quantities, and I work late enough to the point where I'm mostly alone in the building and no one is there to witness my downfall.

I would really appreciate some advice. The last time I asked this question I got something more along the lines of "well, don't do that." And then I stewed quietly with hate for about an hour.

How do you cope after a binge? And how do you control late-night snacking in the first place?

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