Binge eating!!! Any advice

Hello All,

I just signed up with MFP today. I've been reading everyone's blogs and success stories and find them all very inspiring, I only hope I can be half as successful as you guys.
A little about myself, I am a binge eater!!! In my 20's I exercised a lot so I did not see the consequences of it. In my 30's, the exercise got less and the weigHt piled on, I was devastated when I went over 200lbs, then 250. When I hit 273 I went into a major depression and then began dieting again. ( also, I have probably tried every diet out there. My success always came from calorie counting) Anyway, I am now 310 lbs, I start a diet everyday and binge at night. I can't stop binge eating at night. Please, any advice would be greatly appreciated.


  • pepper176
    pepper176 Posts: 16 Member
    I also get the urge to pig out at night. One of the first things you can try to do is start "bingeing" on stuff that's not that bad for you and isn't calorie-laden. Popcorn is every dieter's best friend! Fruits and veggies are yummy and full of good stuff without being too high in calories. Slowly start changing your habits so that you gain some control and aren't filling up on the bad stuff.

    Another tip, which it sounds like you already know, is that exercise will offset calories - if you can't give up the extra calories, you have to burn them! MFP is really helpful in that regard because it automatically calculates your burned calories back into the total you can eat for the day.

    What kind of calorie goal do you have right now? How many lbs are you hoping to lose per week? Sometimes it's smart to start off slow, with a lower loss-per-week goal/more calories to eat per day, so you can get into the swing of things and get used to logging and counting your calories.

    Good luck!
  • jlshea
    jlshea Posts: 494 Member
    I just have to keep the trigger foods out of the house...cookies, candy, ice cream, chips. Out of sight, out of mind....mostly. I feel keeping the junk food out of the house has weened me off my sugar addiction.

    I now work out when I feel like bored eating which used to be after work. Now after work I get on the treadmill and crank up the music and the urges to eat are gone.

    What about a hobby of some sort in place of when you'd binge? I got into painting last year and it kept me busy and my mind off eating.

    Maybe look into OverEaters Annonymous.
  • paigenevaeh
    paigenevaeh Posts: 64 Member
    Helloo! I have suffered from binge-eating, and I'm currently on the waiting list to see a therapist. (5 week wait...). I know there's no magic cure, but one of the things I do is leave out healthy snacks. I am a night time binger too; leaving an apple or a bunch of grapes by my bed tends to help. A tip I learnt from a MFP member was to drink water...LOTS of it. You'll get that 'full' feel you'd get after a binge.
    Feel free to add me if you like? Sometimes it helps to speak to someone who gets what you're going through.
  • Binge eating is a disorder! I have a dear friend who also suffers from this. The first step is getting help from a professional to help deal with the issues that are causing you to binge. The second thing I would suggest is to find healthy alternative snack ideas for the night time. Fresh Veggies, veggie chips, rice crackers with almond butter etc. But remember too much of the healthy stuff isn't great for you either. MFP has great support group, find one for the binge eating. Understand you are not the only one who suffers from this disorder. See if you can get in to see a nutritionist and they will help you understand the food pyramid and give you the tools to make better choices. We eat to survive, not live to eat! Hope this helps! Good Luck. ~Brooke~
  • Cookie_4
    Cookie_4 Posts: 152 Member
    I tend to binge when I either over-restrict myself or when I'm having a hard time dealing with my emotions. Ever since I've realized that, I've been able to lessen my binge episodes. I still fall back into the habit sometimes but I'm able to recognize it better and feel like I have more control.

    Why do you think you binge? Be as honest as you can :)
  • Hi! I've had trouble with this too, especially at night! One thing I've found is that if I allow myself to have what I want during the day I won't binge at night. That doesn't mean I eat a whole cake but If I have a nasty craving for chocolate I might allow myself one small slice and that will curb my cravings later. I found that if I deny myself my cravings all day then they become "uncontrollable" by night time but if I indulge a little - moderation, right?!- then I'll be muuuuuch less likely to binge at night because ive allowed myself to have a treat. I also try to keep myself a bit busier on rough days. I paint my nails, haha I know that sounds dumb, but I paint my nails because i cant binge with wet nails and if by the time my nails are dry I still want to have something I'll give myself a small - medium portion, but usually by the time they'r dry my cravings are curbed!
    Good luck to you and way to go on starting this journey!
  • Tracie524
    Tracie524 Posts: 65 Member
    Hello. I can tell you what works for me. I have 130 pounds to lose. I tend to binge eat too. I cleaned out all of my cupboards and refrigerator of any trigger foods. Trigger foods for me are mac and cheese, chips, ice cream (even the lower fat stuff...I can't stop at just one serving) or any dessert like items. I don't keep them around. I keep healthy snacks around so that is my option. It keeps me from going crazy. I'm hoping the longer I eat healthy, the less I will want to binge.
  • Thank you, I really should try having a small piece of what I'm craving instead of binging at night. I feel my mind is trained that once I slip it's all over for that day and I binge with those famous words " I will get back on track tomorrow"
  • Thank you for your reply. I do try to keep healthy food in the house, and yes it's true, you can binge on them too. It's almost like a disease that not everybody can understand. I will try to keep more fruit in the house rather the 100 calorie snacks because I could binge on them.
  • janet0513
    janet0513 Posts: 564 Member
    I struggle with this too but you can get a handle on it. First of all, figure out why you are binging (emotional , bored etc) and do something about it. Occupy yourself with other solutions (go for a walk, read, anything to keep you busy). Don't buy food that triggers binges. Have all your food at the table (not in front of the tv) and portioned out. If you really want more you need to get up and measure it out. Ask yourself if you really want this. For me, I need to stay out of the kitchen after dinner. Just being in there, I am compelled to open cabinets etc and eat. Post reminders in cabinets of your goals. Think of all the steps that it takes to binge (for example you buy cookies, you are bored, you grab bag in front of tv, you mindlessly eat the whole package) You can break that cycle at any one of those steps. Keeping healthy snacks is great but remember you can over indulge in them too.
  • Bluepopsicle_25
    Bluepopsicle_25 Posts: 62 Member
    I also have the urge to binge at night. What is working for me is saving most of my calories for the night time. I make my lunch everyday for work and try to plan nutrient dense, but low cal meals and snacks for the day I eat alot of fruit and veg during the day. Also I try to make sure that I have a decent snack that I eat between 3 and 4 in the afternoon so I am not starving when I get home. I am on 1500 cals a day, and usually have between 800 and 900 cals left when I get home. So I can generally satisfy my urge to munch all night on those cals. Also I don't eat out much and make most of my food/sauces etc myself and my homemade version is often lower cal than the store bought version, so I think that helps too.
  • Chain_Ring
    Chain_Ring Posts: 753 Member
    My advice for binge eating is just don't do it. No, seriously.....
  • gramarye
    gramarye Posts: 586 Member
    I just have to keep the trigger foods out of the house...cookies, candy, ice cream, chips. Out of sight, out of mind....mostly. I feel keeping the junk food out of the house has weened me off my sugar addiction.

    I now work out when I feel like bored eating which used to be after work. Now after work I get on the treadmill and crank up the music and the urges to eat are gone.

    What about a hobby of some sort in place of when you'd binge? I got into painting last year and it kept me busy and my mind off eating.

    Maybe look into OverEaters Annonymous.

    Pretty much all of this. I don't know anything about Overeaters Anonymous, but for me it's a matter of redirecting the impulse to eat when I'm not actually hungry and doing something else. Eventually I stopped getting so antsy when I wasn't eating. If I want something but don't have it in the house, 9 times out of 10 I'll deem it not worth putting on pants to go get. (And the one time I do? I don't stress.)

    Something that works for me: eat light throughout the day to accommodate that I tend to eat heavier/more at night. I socialize pretty regularly throughout the week, and that often involves cooking or going out for drinks. So I've learned to eat as few as my calories during the day as possible, unless I'm really hungry.
  • concordancia
    concordancia Posts: 5,320 Member
    1) Figure out your triggers: boredom? stress? emotions? Seriously consider talking with a counselor to help you figure this out. It does help to be able to say to yourself "This is the kind of thing that would normally send me into a binge. What can I do instead?"

    2) Calculate a reasonable calorie goal for YOU. Try the MFP setting, but remember that most people are only satisfied with that + a reasonable workout every day. Getting lots of nutritious food throughout the day will ensure that binge tendencies are emotional/mental, not your body trying to get proper nutrients.

    3) I have to do a week or two of "rehab" when I start over again. For that time, my diet is entirely proteins and veggies. No grains and no fruits. (I follow phase one of South Beach, but the Mediterranean DIet and the Sonoma Diet have similar principles.) This can be miserable for the first few days if I have really been hitting the fries and pies. When they headaches stop and I start feeling better, I slowly add back occasional whole grains and fruit. Soon, I am also able to incorporate sweets by taking out a serving (or even a half serving) and sitting down to enjoy that. I am satisfied with that one serving and can trust myself not to go back again and again. If I slip, I log it. If I eat the whole thing, I don't buy that food again.

    4) I have certain external triggers that I avoid like the plague, namely Wendy's and McDonald's. Just pulling up to one of those means that I am falling back into old habits. No matter how hungry I am, there are better choices around. Even I eat the same food someplace else, it doesn't have the same effect on me as those places. I have never put on substantial weight without being a frequent visitor of those establishments. Sure, I make other mistakes once I start down that path, like eating a whole pie in a day or two, but well, to each there own.
  • sarahp86
    sarahp86 Posts: 692 Member
    I am currently going through the process of trying to stop this cycle. I can recommend using websites for eating disorders with tips or local support groups. If you don't feel like attending a support group there are online chat forums.

    Best of luck with it and if you do bing don't give in. Just start fresh the next day and don't punish yourself.

    This is the website I use. It's based in Ireland but it will Gove you an idea of what's out there