The Food Demon Inside Me

Sunday, January 20, 2013

I went to the doctor last year for a check-up (and I think I have a particularly great doc). He asked me about my diet and I told him I feel like there is a demon inside me making me eat. I reworded the statement pretty quickly, because I realize it sounded crazy. And still does. He nodded, but the look on his face lead me to believe he really didn't understand.

See, I do feel like there is something inside of me. I call it a "switch" mostly, because that sounds less crazy. This switch moves on and off. When the switch is off, I eat properly, I don't let food run my day, I think about my future health, exercise, etc. But it's when the switch turns ON, I am not myself.

It can happen at any time, and the closer I get to my goal weight (I'm down 98.2 lbs with about 19.2 lbs to go), the more I fear it. One morning I wake up, and I just eat. And eat. Not like 10,000 calories at a time eat, but maybe 2 or 3,000 a couple of times a day. And when my pants tighten up, I say, "Tomorrow will be different," but I wake up and it's the same. I feel the compulsive desire to eat, which overpowers my guilt and desire to look "normal" and feel healthy. And a lot of the time, I do it right after a full, healthy meal.

I can remember some of my binges:

(a) Nutella - grab a spoon and scoop it out. Dip the spoon in the peanut butter too.
(b) Rice cakes with peanut butter on them - then scoop pudding on top of that and eat it.
(c) Buy two candy bars - eat them both before I get home (Heath).
(d) Eat Mexican. Over a basket of chips, the entire fajita plate, a jumbo margarita, then maybe another one.
(e) Five pieces of toast for a "snack."
(f) Bought boston creams one day to share with a friend. I ate three of them, then ate my jumbo streusel muffin I had bought, but left in the car.
(g) Used a gift card at Cheesecake factory and bought five pieces of cheesecake. Ate two one evening and a third for breakfast (think 1100 calories a piece).
(h) Bake cookies, eat 20 in a day. Bake cake, eat three pieces or more in a day.
(i) Granola bar, peanut butter, honey, raisins to the tune of about 700 calories.
(j) Grab pretzel sticks and dip them in peanut butter. LOTS of peanut butter.
(k) Eat the chocolate melting wafers I use for baking straight out of the bag by the handfuls.

Anyway, these are not normal eating behaviors. I fear this demon will grab ahold of me every day. I've got a pretty decent handle right now, but it will be back. I know I'm a compulsive overeater with bouts of control.

I need help. And when I get to my goal weight, WHEN I do, I hope the desire to be healthy stuffs the demon away. If not, I'll be in big trouble.

Thank you to all my spark, mfp, and personal friends that harass me, motivate me, support me, and knock food out of my hands. Sometimes I can't control myself and I need an intervention.

I know I'm not the only one like this. And that is comforting.

Edit: After I wrote this, I looked up compulsive eating. This is me to a T:
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  • BRENNA84
    i can very much relate to this post tooo tooo well. thanx for posting this. you are NOT alone
    2781 days ago
    Wow- this sounds like me too
    2975 days ago
    emoticon foods to binge on. There are so many reasons that we overeat the least of which is actual physical hunger. I for one seem to do better the less I have around. Makes me have to work for it, like go for a walk to the store to get what I want. Good thing is I'm usually busy doing something else and I blow off the trip. I had a not so good week meaning I was surrounded by foods I find hard to resist and I gained a few and I'm not even going to say it's water weight because I just kept going back to the kitchen. I know that switch well and watch out when it's on.

    It may return but you've done an emoticon job transforming yourself. The pics are amazing! We've both come a long way and still occasionally overeat. It just means we still have a few more tricks to learn. All the while we're still ahead of where we were. Keep fighting to keep winning.
    3066 days ago
  • SHAR140
    Oh, honey - I want to tell you something. I am the exact same way. I told you, I'm also a sugar/carb addict! Didn't you see my food diaries over the week of christmas?! I wasn't hungry half the time but kept eating anyway!! ugh. Just like I told Linda - I'll eat sweets, switch to the salty snacks, then go back and forth between them way past where I should be full (and have a food baby), but keep eating anyways, until I pass out from carb coma. Then I have a carb hangover the next morning...and sometimes they are worse than alcohol ones!!

    I know most people won't agree with this, but I want you to read this book:
    I don't care if you buy it, borrow it, get it from the library, whatever. I'd send you my copy, but one of my friends has had it forever (but obviously isn't reading it!! I need to get it back.). I promise you, it's not some kind of psychological disorder and there is nothing wrong with you. It truely is an addiction, just like drugs or alcohol.

    The girl you now think is crazier than before!!

    Eek - edited for poor spelling, lol.
    3073 days ago

    Comment edited on: 1/21/2013 4:16:27 PM
  • no profile photo CD13360495
    my weakness is junk food i cant have that in my house so when i go food shoping i make sure i dont pass the junk food .
    3073 days ago
    3073 days ago
    Yeah, Bill, I do that too ... the part about poker, pizza, and beer.

    I leave out the cycling-52-miles part.
    3073 days ago
  • BILL60
    I totally agree, we all have those demons within. I think that at times it's allright to let them win. Example, in my case: On Saturday I cycled 52+ miles. I was on my bike for over 3+ hours. The demons spoke to me and I listened. But, it was OK because I felt that I deserved a bit of a deviation. So, I went to my buddy's house, played some poker, had 3 beers, 3 slices of pizza, lemon merengue pie, peanuts, and whatever else. Afterwards, I was OK with myself. HOOAAA!!
    3073 days ago
    I think we all have that little Food Demon lurking inside us at times. The trick is to keep him under control, and if he manages to escape once in a while, get him locked up ASAP! Good luck with that Food Demon and don't beat yourself up too bad. Just look at what you have accomplished!

    3074 days ago
  • no profile photo CD6966999
    I'm with you lady... That's me to a T, too. Near as I can tell, I don't have triggers. If I do, they are so subtle I can't identify them. That's what makes makes the situation so scary, as you mentioned... I never know when to expect it so I can at least try to head it off, and once it's started it's like a freight train. Ugh!
    3074 days ago
  • FIREFLY4407
    You mention that you go through cycles of having under control and then periods where it will be back out of nowhere. Do you know what are some of your triggers for when it starts back up? I don't have this situation exactly, but have some elements (yo-yo weight loss / gain, stress eating, coveting eating alone, and simple carb sensitivity - where eating one thing just leads to craving and eating a few - or many - more things! But more in a grazing way). Recognizing triggers and looking for alternative coping mechanisms may help.
    3074 days ago
    My weakness is ice cream. I'll have bouts where I'll eat a large box in two days and then feel guilty about it. How do we overcome these times? -- Lou
    3074 days ago
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