Binge eating: Hi all. I'm 29 and... - Weight Loss Support

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Binge eating

Tabs33
Tabs33

Hi all. I'm 29 and desperately trying to lose around a stone. I have been yo yo dieting for around two years now however, I am facing a problem with binge eating. This started after I lost my mum to cancer two years ago. I am able to eat well and head to the gym 4 times a week and then I ruin it because I get crazy urges to eat unhealthy food and give in and end up eating a feast of unhealthy, fatty food. Just wondered if anyone has experienced anything similar and if anyone has any advice. I have tried to look into professional help but have found it to be costly and would like to see if I can manage it myself x

12 Replies
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Hi Tabs33

I totally understand where you are.. My condolences on your loss x

When my beautiful, wonderful and lovely mum died in December 2002, I weighed 9 stones.. and I gained 3 stones in 6 months and kept growing until I reached around 14 and a half stones or more. I learnt what comfort eating was and really didn't care.

But eventually I realised what I was doing and tried to change my mindset to get back to a healthier weight.. this didn't happen quickly. The comfort eating for me and you was/is linked to grieving for someone we love and miss. I would advise you take small manageable steps by cutting out highly fatty or addictive foods.. I started by cutting out chocolate and milk.. after my first year I'd lost a stone and a half just by this step.. I then tried various diets from VLCD to slimming world, (which both added cost to my usual budget).. and I had some success.

But the last 15 months of being on this forum and learning from the wise advice of my peers and calorie counting along with lowering my carbs I have now lost 2 stones.

My advice to you is to allow yourself to grieve.. and try to cut out the "go to" comfort items and ensure you have easy healthier foods available that you can snack on.. I choose grapes as they are easy to pinch one and continue. (I don't like really cold foods.. so I kept the bulk in the fridge and had a couple of clusters in the fruit bowl)

I am now 9 stones 8 pounds and am happy that I had such a good mum and look back with smiles and the occasional tears, we will never stop missing them.. But depending on our faith.. we can look forward to our reunion.. I believe that the Bible is true and the promises made are reliable John 11:17-45.

Keep making small changes, I set them as challenges to myself and made my workmates aware so they could help support me. I wish you happy memories and success to be healthy for you going forwards...

Cheering you on to better days 🎉🎉🎉

Tabs33
Tabs33 in reply to Minniewinny

This message has really really touched me. Thank you so much and I send my love and wishes and condolences for your loss too <3 I'm so sorry.

What an amazing result!! Congratulations. I am finding this group a great source of encouragement and thank you for your amazing advice. Problem with me is that I stick to things for a few weeks and then let it go for around a week and end up feeling way worse...then it feels like a higher mountain to climb to get back onto things.

I will start keeping a diary and follow your amazing advice. Thanks once again and I'm so happy for you - what a fab result you've achieved xx

Minniewinny
Minniewinny5 stone in reply to Tabs33

I admit I now write everything I eat and drink into myfitnesspal (the free version) to account for my calories, I find it's a challenge I like to meet.

One day at a time is all we need to do.. Thoughts and actions will get better... x

Tiggerr
Tiggerr15kg in reply to Tabs33

To help maintain my focus I started using the Daily Diary, which you'll find in 'Events' here.

Other ways of maintaining focus is ensure that this forum is set to open up automatically.

IvanTheHorrible
IvanTheHorribleMaintainer

Sorry about your loss. That's a terrible thing to deal with, especially at 28. I wouldn't be too hard on yourself right now. As minniewinny said, grieve in whatever way you have to.

As regards "urges", it's more than likely that your food is deficient in fat, or perhaps you're just not eating enough. Your body is simply trying to keep you alive.

Can you post a typical day's food schedule?

Hi Tabs33, bless you! I haven't had to go through horrible bereavement so cannot give any insight unlike other folk.... But take heart, go easy on yourself and there are lots of practical tips out there to reduce access to food and cravings. We've all struggled in some way at some point. If you ever get an aargh moment, post it and there's a lot of support here for you. Good luck. X

Thank you guys - this is just so comforting...to have you all behind me. So the NHS calculator told me I needed 1,600-1,800 calories a day. I do find myself peckish throughout the day so perhaps you could take a look at the below - I don't tend to gravitate from the menu below much so this is pretty much what I eat:

Breakfast - Porridge and a banana (300 cals)

Lunch - A cous cous or pasta pot (300 calories)

Dinner - Chicken breast fillet with veg and brown rice (500 calories)

Snacks - Banana, fruit, nuts and raisins after dinner, rice cakes (500 calories)

Many thanks xs

IvanTheHorrible
IvanTheHorribleMaintainer in reply to Tabs33

Honestly, you have an enormous amount of starch there that will completely halt any weight loss - crudely speaking, because you have a continous flow of incoming glucose, your body has no need to burn fat, ever. The calories are irrelevant in that context. Also seems be virtually zero fat, which is bordering on dangerous. It's no wonder you get fat cravings!

I would try getting a LOT more green vegetables in there. Well, basically any veg except potatoes. Fill your shopping basket with veg. Then buy some eggs and some nice cuts of meat - anything you fancy - and get creative. Basically you're aiming to use up your calorie allowance entirely on meat and veg: anything starchy is a 'treat'. Start your day with a couple scrambled eggs on ONE slice of homemade brown toast*, with butter on it, and some full-fat natural yogurt with half a banana. Maybe a chicken Caesar salad for lunch (again, homemade dressing - stay away from that awful stuff in plastic bottles). Beef lobscouse for dinner (remember, no potatoes though). You'll find this a lot more satisfying and the weight will start dropping off.

*Most bread you buy in the supermarket isn't bread, in the sense that it isn't a fermented product. Make yer own from brown flour and yeast. It's dead easy and you'll love the difference. Just try not to overindulge; a boule-sized loaf ought to last you 3-4 days (you might want to freeze it). Check out James Morton's videos on YouTube.

I would never have realised that - thanks so much for the advice. I agree my diet doesn't include any fat which will explain the intense cravings for crisps/chocolate/jams. What would you recommend for snacks? x

IvanTheHorrible
IvanTheHorribleMaintainer in reply to Tabs33

If you eat proper meals bulked out with lots of veg, it's unlikely you'll feel the need for snacks, but my go-to option is eggs. A cheese omelette really hits the spot and only takes about 5 minutes. If you're short on time you could make a vegetable torta and keep it in the fridge for snacking emergencies.

Quesadillas are nice too: keep a packet of flour tortillas in the freezer and prep some grated cheese, onions, and chili (if you like it). Put one tortilla in a frying pan, sprinkle with the cheese/onion mix, heat until soft, fold over and then heat until the cheese is melted. The point here is that flour tortillas present a fairly low glycemic load - even though they're made with flour, they don't spike your blood sugar or insulin (insulin, among many other things, signals your body to switch off fat-burning).

Another possibility: celery and carrot sticks with a hummus dip. Hummus is easy to make, although you do need a powerful blender. The shop-bought ones are not too bad, but homemade is usually better!

Thanks so much for the advice. Would you recommend very minimal carbs? So sorry for the questions - I usually have a bit of brown rice with dinner - just wondering whether to keep it really low.

IvanTheHorrible
IvanTheHorribleMaintainer in reply to Tabs33

The common factor in all successful weight-loss plans is that they reduce glycemic load. Mediterranean, Dukan, South Beach, vegan, you name it, they all do this. Low-calorie diets just reduce all macronutrients at the same time, and you end up with too little protein and fat (bare minimum). That's what turns people into snack monsters.

So if you want to bring your carbs down to a very low level (which WILL give you fast results without hunger) you must be very careful to raise your fat intake to compensate. Your body has to get its energy from somewhere, and although (in theory) you can force it to get all of it from your bodyfat, this isn't a good idea without medical supervision.

If you're OK with getting more green veg, eggs, dairy and meat into your diet (in roughly that order) then you can safely drop your carbs as low as you're happy with. You should be making up the missing carbs with fat from the aforementioned eggs/dairy/meat, and I suggest liberal use of olive oil, butter, or coconut oil for cooking. The veg are there to add fibre (bulk), vitamins, and minerals.

By the way, no need to go overboard on protein: you should be aiming for 0.8g-1.0g/kg, and a crude rule of thumb is that animal products are 20% protein. So if you weigh (say) 60kg then you want 60*0.8*5 = 240g total eggs/dairy/meat/fish per day (there won't be much protein in the veg). This amount will also deliver at least half your fat requirement, as long as you don't go for ultra-lean cuts of meat.

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