So that Friday morning, I crashed and flew off the handle for the most unhealthy, most processed and baddest, meanest kind of food I can lay my hands on.
I had a slice of pound cake for breakfast, and then another one just because. For snacks I have my hands on a box of Pocky Matcha which I finished by myself. Lunch was curry rice at a Thai restaurant. Afternoon snacks included a whole tin of cheese wafer rolls plus chocolates. Dinner was sushi with dessert. For good measures I also drank a nut milk dessert before I go home. When I reach home I polished off another slice of pound cake as well as a leftover custard bun from Yumcha.
For the whole day I wasn’t even hungry but emotionally I was empty. I kept trying to fill the emptiness I felt with food but the more I ate the more it felt empty and then I ended up eating more. Of course it didn’t make me feel better. It just made me feel worse. I was miserable and depressed for the whole day and the day after.
So here’s the big question. What to do for an emotional reset after a binge?
- Accept the binge and ‘enjoy’ that moment.
You’ve already decided to tumble down. You’ve already got the food in your hands. Why not just eat it, enjoy it and be full into the moment? It’ll help you reflect on how you feel later. Just do it. It’s part of the awareness and learning process. Start by asking yourself some questions that will help you be conscious of your eating
– “How does this (food) feel in my mouth? Is it crispy, do I enjoy crunching it?”
– “How do I like the taste? How does bite 1 compare to many bites later?”
- Draw a line to when you will stop.
Never ever cross that line. Never ever project your ‘crash day’/ ’emotional day’ past a certain time. Allow yourself to vent and then stop. Prolonged venting will become a lifestyle habit. Go back to your ideal eating immediately after the time is up (usually starting on a new day) For me, I went to bed and then woke up going back to no processed foods.
- Spend time with friends and family to kill the after effects such as feeling bad for failing/ moody from sugar withdrawal the next day. Do something with others. Don’t isolate yourself and brood over your failure. Use the time to build relationship with people around you. Feel loved and show love.
- Reflect on your fail day. It’s okay to fail, journal it down. Writing helps the mind to put the event at rest and not to stress over it. We can always start again anytime, nobody’s going to judge ourselves but ourselves.
- Accept yourself
If you start hating yourself you will only put more stress on yourself which never helps in solving the problem. Self-compassion is something I’m practicing and constantly trying to improve on. The first thing I do is to accept myself. It’s me and I’ve done all these things. I may not like it but I’m going to forgive myself.
A diet binge is not big deal. Just learn from each experience and gradually you will be able to understand yourself more and to be in control of your emotions. Just remember, no matter what you’re still loved.