Anatomy of a binge
Saturday, March 02, 2013
Remember how a few weeks ago I kept saying I had a "modified binge"? Of course you don't because why would you remember a random data point in my blog.
Today I had a real binge, the first one since my "return to health" at the end of December.
There were a lot of factors that played into this one. For one, since my bout with strep two weeks ago I have had a funny lump in my throat and very little sense of hunger/satiety. On the plus side, I haven't been getting terribly hungry. On the minus side, I don't feel particularly full no matter how much I eat. Partly because of that I haven't been wanting to or able to eat as much healthy food as I normally do so I have been adding in sugary snacks nearly every day -- though still within my calories (until today).
For another, my hormones are totally out of whack. I started birth control for the first time in my life. I was celibate until marriage and was then happy for the kids to come as they did. Extended breastfeeding did a good job of spacing my kids naturally but I had a wakeup moment a couple of months back when my husband and I both came to the conclusion that our household was barely functioning with our four little boys and we were just not ready for another pregnancy. All well and good, but (TMI) since starting the pills two months ago I have had three periods, each of which involved 9-11 days of active bleeding. Not fun.
Another factor is what's in the house right now. If I had had this binge last week, the damage would have been significantly curtailed as I would have been limited to pretzels, some minty M&Ms that I can't eat too many of because of the flavor, and peanut butter and dried fruit. Because this is the week after Purim, I had instead a full (100 gram) bar of Swiss chocolate, a brownie, two handfuls of Jolly Ranchers, a packet of candy corn, a bag of Junior Mints, a bag of spicy chips, sugar cereal with milk, a cinnamon roll, some trail mix, chocolate chips, oh -- and the pretzels and peanut butter with rice cakes I would have had anyway. I should have just thrown that stuff out when it came in but I have a really hard time wasting anything. Which is funny because my son and I had this same conversation today where he had taken a candy he didn't like (we opened a cnady dish we had been given last week in honor of someone's birthday) and I told him to throw it out. He said he didn't want to waste it but I pointed out to him how eating something unhealthy that he didn't even get any pleasure out of was a bigger waste than throwing the candy in the garbage. Doesn't the same apply to me?
The biggest factor may well have been that I simply did not drink enough. But why? Malaise? Laziness? I honestly don't know. But this was one heck of a binge. I was even annoyed when I couldn't find a particular box of junk that I knew existed because I KNEW I would only be in the mood to actually eat the food right then but I wanted it badly enough to keep looking until I found it. And then it was over. I fed the kids dinner, put them to bed, and tossed out all sorts of junk that remained around the house.
What's my plan going forward? I don't know. I'm thinking about it.
For one thing, I will make sure I get the food I need during the day. Maybe I will add "no binging" back to my official goal list, though it feels silly since the urge is so rare. I noticed this week that I have been pre-prepping dinner's main course but not the veggie or salad sides which was leading me into trouble when I came home starved or late, so I will make an effort to have that part done ahead of time as well. I plan to make a big pot of veggie soup tomorrow so that should help. I have been struggling with menu planning since I simply don' t have much interest these days, so any recipe suggestions would be highly appreciated! The requirements are minimal prep time (cook time is okay) and palatable to preschoolers as well as adults. That's not too much to ask, is it? Since my kids get way too much starch during the day (cheerios or malt-o-meal for breakfast, a sandwich nearly every lunch, and frequently pasta with cheese as bedtime snack) I'd prefer protein and veggie heavy meals.