Monday, February 28, 2011

Binge eating disorder sucks

It is so hard to describe how difficult it can be to live with an eating disorder.  If I try, I worry that I will sound crazy.  Unless you've "been there", I feel that it is probably impossible to understand.

Since 1/8/11, I've done really well.  I've only binged twice.  Since eating a vegan/low-fat/high-fiber/low to no sugar diet, my cravings for sugar have diminished to the point of being almost non-existant.  I am so grateful for this.

The last day or two, I have been craving Reese peanut butter eggs.  You know the ones.  The glorious, delightful, sinfully delicious candy that it is in every grocery store at Easter.  This year, they have been in the stores earlier which has been a bit difficult.  Of course there is now the Valentine version, the Christmas version.....ugh.

Since I'm making an effort to be mindful of the reason behind my cravings, I began analyzing this.  Have I eaten more sugar than normal?  No.  Other than fruit I'm not eating sugar.  Am I anxious?  Not particularly - in fact today I'm less anxious than I was for a few days last week.  Is it hormonal?  No.

There is such a large part of me that misses binging.  I know that sounds irrational, but it's true.  Even though there are multiple tools that I can use to avoid binging, it is so very easy to ignore those tools and binge anyway.  Then the other disordered thinking begins. "If I'm going to binge, what else have I been avoiding that I might as well eat?"  Next, the discouragement.  "I'll never be able to do this, so why bother trying."

Yes, this stinks.  However - with the help of God who is my strength, I did not binge!  I did not stop at the store and buy Reese eggs and various other forms of sugar and fat.  It is not worth it.  The few minutes of pleasure are not worth the guilt and the cravings that will result for probably days after the binge.


Friday, February 25, 2011

27 pounds lost, but the scale is still evil

I hate scales.  For my entire adult life, there has been only one year that I was actually happy with the number on the scale.  This was the year following a two year weight loss effort that resulted in a huge weight loss.  I managed to keep it all off for about a year, then gained it all back.

Why do we allow the number on the scale to determine how our day will be?  Or determine our self worth?  Since I have such a horrible relationship with the scales, I decided this time that I would only weight myself about once a month.  I planned to weight myself on Monday, but I weighed myself about a week ago.  Then I weighed myself today, deciding that this will be my "official weigh-in of the month.

I've lost 27 pounds since January 8!!!!!!!!!!  How awesome is that!!  It is more than I expected, but even more importantly I'm eating healthy.  I don't feel hungry.

Now you're thinking - why does she hate the scale?  Because I only lost 1 pound this week.  Wow.  I definitely need to keep this in perspective.  How unhealthy is that kind of thinking?!  I've lost 27 pounds, I'm eating healthy, but my initial reaction is to be upset and disappointed because during one particular week of this journey I only lost 1 pound.

1 pound lost is 1 more step towards my goal.  1 pound lost is much better than a weight gain.  1 pound lost is better than 1/2 pound, 1/4 pound or staying the same.

Taking all of that into consideration is good, but I need to learn to look at the overall picture.  This is a lifelong journey that need not be measured in one week.

I've lost 27 pounds and I'm on my way to a permanently healthy me!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Change of plans

We went to Outback last night as planned.  When we arrived, the parking lot was packed and we found that the wait time was 60 minutes!  Of course, it was a Friday night around 6:30 p.m., so we should not have been surprised.  My husband was starving, so he didn't want to wait that long.

We decided to go to Cracker Barrel.  That probably wasn't the best choice since their menu is full of traditional Southern foods, which tend to be full of fat and butter.  I ordered grilled chicken, green beans, and a house salad.  This sounds like a healthy meal, but it tasted so good I have my doubts!  When I got home, I looked for the nutritional information to see if I had made good choices.  The Cracker Barrel web site does not give this info!  Hmmmmm.......this causes me to suspect that the food is not particularly healthy.

Even though I didn't stay with my vegan plan, I feel like I made good choices.  The chicken was grilled, I don't think the green beans had a lot of oil or butter, and the salad had very little cheese.  I did eat the croutons - they were delicious and were probably a poor choice.  I also ate half of a cornbread muffin with butter.  That probably wasn't the best decision, but overall I feel I did really well.

The main thing that I noticed last night is that rather than being overwhelmed by all of the choices on the menu like I normally am, it was much easier to make a decision when searching for healthy fare.  After all - this didn't leave very many choices!  Most importantly, I avoided sugar.  I was full and satisfied, but not overly full because I didn't overeat like I have typically done at restaurants in the past.

Even better - my choices last night did not cause me to crave fatty, sugary, salty foods today!!!


Thursday, February 17, 2011

Restaurant eating

First, I'd like to say that I did not succumb to the chocolate cravings that I mentioned in my last post!!!!  How awesome is that??!!

Tomorrow night, hubby and I are going on a date!  I'm very excited.  Even though our kids are older, we still don't go out very often.  We're going to Outback because we have a gift certificate.  This will be the first time I've eaten at a restaurant since beginning my new healthy eating plan.

I think it is so helpful that most restaurants have menu and nutrition info on the web sites.  Since I haven't been to Outback in quite some time, I felt that the best plan would be to prepare myself by browsing the menu.  I didn't really see any vegan options.  My next "go to" healthy choice is typically grilled chicken.  They do offer a grilled chicken entree and a grilled chicken sandwich.  I will likely go with one of those and veggies.

How do you handle eating out?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

craving chocolate

I'm craving chocolate today.  Not in the overwhelming, I'm going to make a special trip out to the store, I will not find relief until I eat chocolate way, but it's been consuming my thoughts for the last several hours.    

Rather than immediately searching the house for chocolate, which would have been fruitless because I'm pretty sure there is none, or finding any type of sugar that I could find to begin a binge, I've examined my thoughts and tried to find a reason for the craving.

Am I hungry? Not really.  Have I eaten enough fiber filled foods today? Yes.  Have I eaten more sugar today than usual? No.  Could it be hormone related?  No.  What about emotions - am I lonely, sad, depressed or bored?  Not particularly.  

There are only two reasons I can think of.  First, my nieces were here last night and I fixed pizza and garlic cheese bread for dinner, and gave them ice cream for dessert.  I fixed a healthy pizza for myself, which was somewhat satisfying, and I avoided the garlic bread because it's not on my current eating plan.  (not to mention that I would have difficulty stopping at one piece) At the time, the ice cream didn't bother me.  I purchased three small cups of ice cream rather than a half gallon so that there would be no leftovers (one for each of my nieces and one for my daughter).  The pizza and garlic bread sure looked good, though.  Could being around all of this last night cause cravings?

Second, the speaker at church today spent a while talking about ice cream this morning. (I know, it sounds strange but he definitely related it to the Bible passage that we were studying).  He mentioned his love of ice cream, many different Ben and Jerry's varieties, and he gave my daughter a pint of Ben and Jerry's Phish Food.  Could this be the cause?

Could it be one of the two reasons I mentioned?  Or are there cravings that occur for no good reason?

I'll ponder that some more, and I will not succumb to temptation.

Friday, February 11, 2011


I did it!!  I successfully avoided the unhealthy food at the pizza party today!  I decided the best course of action would be to not go to the party.  Since the party was basically a lunch with the sole purpose of eating, it didn't really make sense to go.

I was so worried about it, analyzed it so much, and do you think anyone even really commented when I said "I'm trying to eat healthy, no thanks."?  Of course not!

I need to learn that I don't need to be concerned about others' opinions about my food choices.  I don't really think too much about others' opinions about much else, so why should I be concerned about this?  Answer: I don't need to be.  My food choices effect me, not them.

I'm grateful that with God's help, I've continued to have motivation to eat healthy.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

pizza party

 We're having a pizza party tomorrow at work for my boss' birthday.  How do I deal with that?  My first approach was denial.  I didn't want to plan for it.  How silly is that?  Today, I finally realized that when the planning began and it was asked "what should we order?", I could have asked if anyone else would be interested in a healthy option. Perhaps a veggie pizza with no/light cheese?  Or a salad?  I went to the restaurant's web site, and (surprise, surprise) there were NO healthy options.  Only pizza, breadsticks, and wings.  Of course, if I'd planned earlier maybe someone else would have agreed that a veggie pizza was a good choice, but at this point it's really too late to ask the company to buy an additional pizza for the party if I'm likely the only person that would eat it.

I actually don't really want to eat the pizza.  My main issue is not the food itself, but the "why aren't you eating" questions.  I am not comfortable enough, assertive enough, self confidant enough or open enough to feel at ease with nine or ten other people eating pizza and either not eating at all or bringing my own healthy lunch.

I asked my son for his opinion. He suggested that I take a personal day.  That seems so radical! I have such a strong work ethic that I can't even fathom doing that.

My son mentioned in a separate conversation, that as a healthy, fitness crazed body builder he couldn't imaging walking into McDonalds and ordering a burger.  He compared it to a pastor going to the ABC store.  My response?  I told him that no body would pay attention to him.  They don't care what he's eating.  Hmmmmm.........sounds like I need to heed my own advice.

Monday, February 7, 2011


How much of a temptation is it for you to be around foods that you're trying to avoid?  At the office, for example?

Today, we had a birthday party for a co-worker.  I chose not to bring anything, because I knew that if I didn't I wouldn't eat any of the goodies that other people brought.  The cake. The chicken salad on rolls.  The chips and dip.  It actually didn't bother me.

Then someone put two trays of cookies and brownies near my desk.  I could smell them.  That made things a bit harder.  I should have moved them, but I didn't.  I didn't eat any of them, and I didn't stop on the way home from work to buy something similar as I would have in the past.  Victory!!

During all of that, a pizza party was being planned for Friday.  Sigh.  Do you ever feel alone in your journey to being healthy?  Do you ever feel as if you're the only person that is trying to avoid high fat, high sugar foods?  Or maybe that others eat healthy 80% of the time so that they're comfortable indulging occasionally?

Indulging once in a while hasn't worked well for me in the past.  The small "treats" so quickly progress into a binge.

I will make a plan for Friday.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Successful Event

Wow - I haven't posted in a week!  This week has been fairly uneventful.  I'm finding that a low fat, high fiber, low/no sugar diet is definitely key to avoiding uncontrollable sugar cravings.  I can actually go into a grocery store and not have an overwhelming urge to buy every cookie, cake, candy bar, etc. in sight!!

During the week, I was a bit concerned about an event.  Saturday night, we were celebrating my sister's birthday at my house.  We were having dinner - one would assume that since it was at my house that I would be doing the majority of the cooking.  However, I'm really not a particularly good cook.  Not to mention that the rest of the family would probably not to want to eat my vegan choices.  Fortunately, my parents and my sister are health conscious.

Mom fixed baked chicken, flat iron steak, green beans, fruit salad and rolls.  I fixed salad, roasted red potatoes and chocolate chess pie.  Since I knew  the menu in advance, I was able to plan ahead of time what I would eat.

I know what you're thinking - why is a sugar addict fixing chocolate pie???!!!  Well, even though I'm not a great cook, I can fix yummy desserts.  My sister and mom are very supportive, so if I had said that I didn't feel comfortable making dessert they would have completely understood.  I decided to give it a whirl.

My daughter made the pie almost entirely on her own, with a little bit of supervision from me.  I knew that this would give me some accountability.  I'm not going to ask my 13 year old daughter to be an accountability partner, but since she knows that I'm trying to eat healthy I would be embarrassed to do otherwise with her present.

Having the pie sitting there at dinner really didn't bother me!!  What progress.  I ate baked chicken, green beans, and fruit salad.  I was very content and full.  I did sort of miss having my mom's home made rolls, but I knew that if I ate one it could very easily start a downward spiral.  (This was the first meat that I had eaten since 1/9/11.  I'm still planning to stay with my vegan eating style, at least for a while.  I could have fixed an alternate main dish for myself, but I decided that boneless, skinless, baked chicken for this event would be ok)

How do you handle events?