Am I binge eating?

This week, I heard some speculation about what the symptoms are of binge eating? 

Is it adding volume to a meal? Is it eating too much too quickly at one time? Is it just grazing on food all day long? Basically, is it just different forms of binging?

So. Much. To. Say. 

What a fab question!  And even though it’s a really pet peeve of mine to answer a question with a question, I’m going to go ahead and ask: Why does that matter to you?

Here’s the 411

Dictionary.com defines a binge as, “a period or bout, usually brief, of excessive indulgence, as in eating, drinking alcoholic beverages, etc.; spree.”  And when we are talking about binge eating as a disorder, or in the family of disordered eating, it’s characterized by consuming unusually large amounts of food, eating rapidly, eating until you’re uncomfortably full, or eating large amounts of food when you’re not hungry. 

So, while almost all Americans have some relationship with binge eating (hello Thanksgiving!), it’s about the frequency, intensity and durations of these episodes, and really, at day’s end, it’s about HOW IT MAKES YOU FEEL.  

The characteristics that matter most are the ones about FEELING: feeling unable to stop eating, eating alone out of embarrassment, feeling disgusted or disappointed, depressed or guilty after you eat.  

So back to your question, Buddies. Is adding volume to a meal, eating too much too quickly at one time or grazing on food all day long binging? Again, let me answer your question, with a question: How is it making you feel?  

And, how do you want to feel about your recovery, generally? How do you want to feel after you’ve eaten your meal or snack?  Do you want to feel like you’ve pulled one over on your Behavioral Coach my adding extra food and not writing it down?  Do you want to feel like you need to take a nap after you’ve eaten your lunch? Do you want to feel nervous and uncertain that you are working towards your goals with food and weight? Obviously not. #duh

Perhaps the question we want to be asking is: Is this behavior in line with my wise mind?

Is this behavior taking care of myself? Is this behavior leading me down the road of recovery and freedom from my issues with food and weight? Because answering yes to those questions will never leave you wondering if you’ve binged or not. Pinky Swear on that one.  

Now, please don’t read this and turn on your shame light. Pleeeeeease. I feel like a broken record with all the times that I tell you that recovery from your issues with food and weight is an incredible imperfect process. And I will continue to be a broken record until the day you believe me.  

Seriously, there are days where you could put a nanny cam at my dining room table and watch me rush through and hoover in my dinner in extremely questionable ways. Living your best life and being your best self is focusing whenever you possibly can on acting like your best self – it happens imperfectly, and when it’s our overarching goal, and when we are committed to doing it day in and day out, it will happen more times than not. So let’s make this our new trend. Sound good?#beaconbuddysquadgoal