Binge Eating – Is it normal?
First of all let us clear that binge eating does not mean eating pizza, burgers, or any fast food. But Binge eating is a disorder. It is that compulsive overeating which you/ me or we do consciously or subconsciously.
Compulsive eating abnormal amounts of food. Here, a person who is binge eating is unable to stop his consumption or is in total loss of control. It could be any food. Not necessarily fast food, processed food, or the likes.
Binge eating disorder is quite similar to Night Eating syndrome. Mind it, binge eating can happen to anyone who is absolutely slim and fit. But the consequences of binge eating could be obesity and other disorders.
Why do we binge eat?
We live in an age full of distractions.
Our life today is more of what goes outside than our inner self. Add to it the screen time we have during eating the food. As a result of which a human being is unable to read his own body signals.
The body doesn’t need those packs of chips while watching every episode of The Game of Thrones. But as they say, Old habits die hard.”
Other biological causes include hormonal irregularities which lead to food addiction.
Psychological conditions like low self-esteem, depression can make find comfort in food, and gradually binge eating becomes a habit.
Symptoms of Binge Eating:
- Eating even if the stomach is full
- Eating more when alone/isolated
- Stocking food for a later time
- No satiation
- Lack of sensation while binging.
Being mindful while eating is least emphasized given the abundance of everything our generation has. We need to check our timings of eating and be true to ourselves while gauging,” How much is enough?
As it is written, we live in a world which is full of distractions. We need to slow down and identify the pace of our life to align with mindfulness. If that is not possible, we can start with just some rituals. Rituals usually help us find our way into a habit that is more sustainable. Some rituals we know and some are being taught to us by our ancestors or our elders.
Prepare your mind and body for the meal
Washing hands before food is one such ritual that makes the mind ready for the meal ahead. It also subconsciously prepares our body for eating.
Be grateful for the meal
In ancient India, eating food was considered as a “holy offering” to the god residing in the body. It is just not filling your stomach with food, it is just like offering food to the body which is considered as a Temple. Even if it looks to be very superficial, it is true. Till today, in most households, they pray before eating and then start eating slowly.
Beware of sitting posture
Sitting cross-legged for eating is one such ritual, which is not possible now especially when we all sit on the dining table. You can still sit with legs crossed for eating to ease the process of digestion.
Eat Without A TV or Mobile phone or a book
When we say that cellphones are distractions, we should make every effort to avoid it when we are eating. When you are distracted, there is very less focus on food and whether you are full or not? Mostly, the person who is distracted with TV or mobile phone while eating loses track of what he/she is eating and 90% of the time ends up stuffing themselves.
Feel the food
Eating is a process which actually stimulates most of our senses. Sense of Smell, Taste, Touch are at work when you are eating. Whenever you serve your food, feel it with these senses and then start eating slowly.
Chew your food 32 times, they say. That metaphorically means eat slowly. Savoring each and every bite, being thankful to god. Eating slowly, helps digestion. All digestive juices flow through the mouth in the process of chewing.
Washing your own plate
Don’t get up as soon as you have finished your food. Sit calm for a couple of seconds and then go ahead and wash your plate. Once washed, keep it at a designated place. Wash your hands after you are done with food. This complete process will give you a sense of mindfulness and satisfaction.
Mindful eating has its own merits. Weight loss is one of them. Binge eating would never be able to help you with weight loss. Something which is alien to our body would never help it get back to its own shape. Try the mindful eating map and let us know.