Bingeing used to be worst for me at night. Once the sun would go down, it was like all my fears and anxieties came out, and of course, what did that make me want to do? Eat (and eat and eat). The bingeing didn’t even always end after I went to sleep! There were some weeks where I would wake up out of a dead sleep (usually right around 2 a.m….weird) and feel the need to eat. I’d shovel in some cereal straight from the box, or a few pieces of buttered bread, then fall back into bed.
There’s a disorder called night eating syndrome that has been more talked about lately; and after receiving this note from a HealthyGirl.org reader, I felt like it was time for us to talk about nighttime eating:
“Recently I have been having more and more ‘binge days.’ I eat a healthy breakfast (usually oatmeal) and I drink a lot of water. However when it’s 6pm and onward, the green eyed monster comes out. During this time I usually eat from sweet, to salty to spicy till I’m so sick I can’t even move. When I’m done (finally) I feel guilty, not angry though I just try to be optimistic about the next day. My question is, is my behaviour typical or am I going completely loony?” —Stacey, 18
Let’s all tell Stacey together: NO, you’re not loony. I mean, are you acting normally with food? No, but neither did any of us! I daresay this is an experience that every binge eater has had. The good news is, you can recover. To get started, I’m going to point you to several previous posts here where there’s been a ton of great tips and personal experience shared on how to get started on recovery:
What’s Your Advice For This Binge Eater?
What it Takes To Go From Sick and Stuffed to Strong and Healthy
The Book That’s Helping One Binger Get Sane About Food
Now, to the rest of you HealthyGirls…has night eating been a problem for you? Did you find that it faded as you began to recover or did you have to take particular precautions or actions to help ward it off? Please share with me, and with Stacey!