How I got my Freedom from Binging and Purging

How I got my Freedom from Binging and PurgingI first realized I had a problem with food approximately 30 years ago. I remembered reading an article about a woman (Boone, Pat) a famous young woman who had a problem with bulimia. She ate and then threw up. Her family was very concerned about it. Attention! Well I decided to try it. The overeating and vomiting was not very appealing, so I tried just not eating. I began exercising more than usual, and then 200 sit-ups, and 200 jumping jacks every night before bed. Well-it sure worked. I was elated. I lost weight and felt great. –for a short while. My parents became concerned and commented on how thin I was becoming i.e.; attention. It didn’t matter to me that it was hurting my body; I just knew I got what I was looking for –attention.

Having four brother and two sisters, the attention was spread thin in our home. I grew up the sixth child. My siblings were all very athletically gifted. My father was as well. Our home was all about sports, 100% teams, games, and trophies. I on the hand am not athletically gifted. I spend most of my adolescents trying out for various teams, always to making it to the final cut (because of my last name). I worked very hard at my school work and carried an A+ average through high school. I realized early on that the grades didn’t matter as much as the sports. At ten years old always being “the baby girl”, my mom got pregnant and my little sister was born. I think that really went through me. I had no athletic talent, but after all I was “the baby”, it’s an odd thing to look back at your life so clearly. Today my little sister is my dearest closet friend in the world. She is the one who urged me to seek help for my eating disorder. She is the one in my family I can talk to about all this,-my weaknesses, my sessions with Lauren, etc.

I would bounce back and forth with bulimia through Junior High and High School. I would pig out with girlfriends, and then vomit when I got home. Not a daily event, not yet! I left home at 17 and the cycle really kicked in. I remember coming home for a visit weighing approximately 95lbs. I’m 5’5” so that’s pretty thin. All I knew was it was great to get attention.

The feelings surrounding the behavior were shame, guilt, helplessness, failure, and being out of control. I remember going to visit family and or friends and feeling awful it there weren’t my snacks out. I would avoid get-togethers because I’d have to control my eating. I sure missed out on a lot. I’ve tried numerous diets in my 30+ years with this disorder, low calorie, no food at all, juicing. I never joined any weight loss programs, mainly because on “the outside” I looked healthy. It was “the inside” that was all messed up. People use to always ask me how do you stay so slim. Huh-if they only knew.

I sometimes joked that my sister, remembering back when she was in high school. She was athletic and larger so my mom took her to Weight Watchers. The irony was I was 26, in full out of control bulimia vomiting 6-7x a day and purchasing huge amounts of food, gorging and then vomiting.

How I got my Freedom from Binging and Purging

My life has improved greatly since becoming part of the Hungry Heart program. I’m not afraid of food anymore.  I can enjoy my daily life and look forward to the future. I can be open about my past eating disorder and hopefully be able to help someone else with my honesty. I feel strong about myself worth and inner strength. This program has opened up a whole new world for me. I can actually enjoy my food, knowing that I am nurturing myself and loving myself by doing so. I’ve been able to better enjoy all the aspects of my life. My energy level is higher. I sleep more restfully. I have discontinued taking antidepressants. Life is pretty great!

You’re Not Alone with Your Emotional Eating Struggle

Certified hypnotherapist and founder of the Hungry Heart Lauren Grant has walked the walk, struggling with her own eating disorder  for many years before she was able to let go of compulsive overeating and embrace life. Now, over eighteen years later, she has created a unique program to healthy, long term weight loss, through a process that includes hypnotherapy, nutritional counseling, behavior modification.

4 Tips to Stop Binge Eating

Did you know that binge eating affects 3.5% of females and 2% of males in the U.S? Even more astoundingly, up to 30% of individuals seeking weight loss treatment can experience bouts of binge eating. And although there’s no scientific cause, binge eating has been shown to be tied to emotional fluctuations and can be triggered by happiness, sadness, anger, or even boredom. Being such a complicated issue, it’s no wonder binge eating is hard to get under control.

What is binge eating?
Binge eating is described as compulsive eating that can get out of control and lead to weight gain and even obesity. It is characterized by periods of excessive overeating, and is a serious condition that can have negative implications (high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease, to name a few) on your health if not addressed.

So how can I stop this?
In order to curb binge eating, we recommend starting with these four helpful steps that will encourage you to find the reason for your binging and help you control it so that it doesn’t control you. It’s not enough to merely look at the problem from a physical standpoint; to see the results you want, you need to understand the emotional and mental roots of the problem.

So here’s where to start:
1. Eat more frequent meals throughout the day. Fruits, vegetables and lean proteins are best. Eating substantially throughout the day will help curb your appetite over the long run and will leave you with less moments where you crave food.
2.  Honor your feelings and emotions. Don’t dismiss your feelings – everyone has the right to their feelings and emotions and realizing how you feel is an important step in validating your feelings.These feelings are vital in controlling your eating habits.
3.  Develop a strong support network. Having outlets, along with tools and resources to help you navigate through the feelings associated with binge eating, can help you get rid of feelings of isolation. It’s also a way to develop healthy coping tools and mechanisms. Reach out to someone.
4.  Minimize time and exposure to unhealthy situations. If you know that spending time with your family increases your stress and acts as a trigger for binge eating, minimize or avoid those situations. Keeping yourself safe and happy, while limiting exposure to unhealthy situations, can help you stay on a routine and avoid bad habits in the future. Make sure that you don’t isolate yourself, though- it is important to stay connected with people that you trust and that make you feel comfortable.

This list is a good starting point to getting on a healthier and happier road. Try these four helpful tips, and for more information on how to stop binge eating, contact us. With the holidays approaching and all the emphasis on food that will be coming up in the next few months, now is the perfect time to change your relationship with food back into one of health and happiness.  The Hungry Heart is here to help you do just that.