Do You Know The Signs That You're About to Binge?

"Leave me alone so I can eat my feelings away!" Wanting to isolate is a warning sign for me.

Over the last several years, I’ve been able to identify a few big, flashing, neon signs that, if I pay attention, will warn me that I’m headed toward a binge.

1. I start feeling “fat.”
I used to feel fat constantly—for, oh, I dunno, about 20 years?!—but it’s very rare these days. Now, when it does happen (like today actually–uh oh), I know I need to take a few quiet minutes to journal or meditate and see if I can identify what’s really going on.

2. I want to add extra stuff to my food.
Instead of being satisfied with my usual yummy yogurt-blueberries-and-walnuts snack, sometimes I find myself wanting to add all kinds of other stuff to it. Nuts, sunflower seeds, raisins, lots of agave nectar. I call that “messing with my food.” And it means I’m searching for some extra satisfaction or comfort…in the wrong place.

3. I want to be alone.
I don’t just mean regular needing alone time. I mean not wanting to answer the phone when it rings. Not wanting to meet up with friends. Feeling like I want to avoid socializing at work. Big alarm bells! That desire to sort of fold in on myself is a sign I feel unsafe and want to isolate for protection—usually it’s because I have some unresolved anxiety or worry I haven’t spent enough time processing. If I don’t take the time to do just that, I’m at major risk of overeating.

Does any of this resonate with you guys? Have you identified signs that you’re about to overeat or binge? What are they?

xo…Sunny
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[pic: Tomi Tapio]

8 Responses to Do You Know The Signs That You're About to Binge?

  1. […] today, Sunny of Healthy Girl, has a great post on binge eating that asks if you’re aware of the signs before a binge. Be […]

  2. nadia says:

    aaah i just read this this morning(am in france) and i was like yeah i know those are the signs and i can predict when im about to binge and..i haven’t binge in 3weeks and..this afternoon i went to uni and had a bad mark at an essay and..i binged.Am I stupid or what?!
    btw i LOVE this blog Sunny and followed ur journey on shape up blog.

  3. Trish says:

    Wow, wish I read this earlier! I’ve been in that funk all day — feeling fat, wanting to be alone, etc. And I had a minor sushi binge when I got home from class – yikes! But I never put two and two together and saw that those feelings of “fatness” and “solitude” could lead to the binge…best lesson I’ve learned all day!

  4. multipixie9 says:

    Thanks for sharing. One warning sign for me is when the little, critical voice in the back of my head starts talking louder and more often. Sometimes when something is bothering me I numb it out and it comes back at me sideways. When I am being kind to myself I allow myself to look and see what has happened to disturb my peace. If I reach the actual problem – like my significant other has done one of his negative behaviors – I sit and let myself see what I really feel. I decide how I am going to handle it and I don’t want to binge. Other days I feel “powerless” to take healthy steps of action and choose to use food to medicate my feelings. Getting angry is normal, staying angry leads to negative behavior and self- sabotage toward my self.

    • hlthygrl says:

      I find that sometimes the hardest part is just identifying what the feeling even is. If I can allow myself some quiet time to do that, then I’m on a good path to giving myself what I need to work it out. Thanks for joining the conversation! Sunny

  5. […] When Sunny of the Healthy Girl feels fat, she takes “a few quiet minutes to journal or meditate and see if I can identify […]

  6. […] you have that help cause your unhealthy behaviors—and how to change them. That helped me realize the warning signs that I was about to binge, and I started instituting healthier behaviors that could take the place […]

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Sunny Sea Gold

About the Author

Sunny Sea Gold is a media-savvy advocate and commentator specializing in binge eating disorder, cultural obsessions around food and weight, and raising children who have a healthy body image.