Have you ever wondered if the way you eat may be disordered? The issue with irregular eating patterns is that they've become so widely accepted that it's easy to perceive yourself as the problem, rather than recognizing the problematic behaviours.
I want to emphasize that you are not the problem! In fact, engaging in these behaviours may be increasing your binge eating and food guilt. Consider whether you've ever done any of these six things:
Eliminating Entire Food Groups
Your body requires and knows how to utilize all food groups for optimal functioning. Cutting out food groups leads to increased cravings, eventually resulting in bingeing, especially on the foods you've restricted!
2. Sneaking Food
This indicates feelings of guilt and shame about what or how much you eat, along with having forbidden foods you won't eat in front of others. Childhood trauma related to being restricted from enjoyable foods may also play a role.
3. Feeling Guilty About What You Eat
Food has no moral value. While your body may feel good or bad based on what you ate, it doesn't make the food itself good or bad, nor does it make you good or bad! Feeling guilty about eating is learned behaviour that can be unlearned.
4. Skipping Social Events to 'Stay on Track' and Avoid 'Tempting' Food
Avoiding social events that involve food means sacrificing a part of your life. Leading a healthy life should not require sacrificing a FULL life. Food shouldn't feel threatening... you were born with the ability to know how much to eat and enjoy it in ways that feel good—you just need to reclaim that ability.
5. Skipping Meals or Snacks to Lose Weight
Under eating is unhealthy and will intensify overeating or binge eating later on.
6. Working Out to Compensate for What You Ate
Exercise should be an act of self-care, not a punishment for eating.
In personal disclosure - There was a time where even I didn't recognize some of these things as disordered because it had become so normalized! Why would you think it's disordered when your friends are doing the same? Why would you think its disordered when you constantly read about the "most effective fat burning workouts" or how to make your favourite dishes "macro friendly"?
Despite the normalization of disordered eating, ask yourself: do you feel normal with food right now? If it's causing stress, anxiety, shame, and stealing joy from your life, it's not normal. Healing your relationship with food starts with acknowledging that, even if the whole world seems to be doing it (hint: they aren't), it doesn't mean its normal or healthy to do! Once you have acknowledged this first step, you will be ready to move towards creating positive change to heal your relationship with your food and body! Speak with a therapist on our team today to help you opt out of these unhealthy behaviours and live more freely with food!