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Calling any recovered EDs - I need som help with binge-fast-binge cycle

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  • Calling any recovered EDs - I need som help with binge-fast-binge cycle

    I'd really like some help from any forum members who have recovered from, or are recovering from an Eating Disorder. I'm struggling here with a non-stop cycle of binging, fasting to counter act the binge, then binging again.

    There are a lot of threads on here (one current) about binging and they have been helpful, but I want to hear some hope and inspiration from people who have been anorexic or bulimic and have used primal to help them move on.

    My background is anorexic for about 24 years with some long gaps of recovery. Current episode has been nearly 2 years now and the only one where I haven't been underweight, my BMI is about 19 I think. I have been fully primal for 7 months, I see a Psychiatrist and I attend regular meetings of Overeaters Anonymous and am working that program with my OA sponsor.

    But I cannot seem to stop binging. I hate it, it's like a switch goes off and I can't stop. It happens 95% of the time in the evenings after dinner. I try to binge only on Primal food, but it invariably involves lots of dried fruit and nuts. Last night I had sugar and grains and was ill all night long. It's a perpetual self-sabotage and I have had more than enough of it. I'm at my wits end, I hate living like this. I embrace Primal and mostly have a good head on my shoulders dealing with this very difficult recovery, but I think it's time now to reach out directly to anybody who's been there and got through it.

    I've put on about 2kg since being Primal (I know, muscle, fat loss and all that) but it does my head in. I'm still obsessed with the scales. I have stopped counting calories though which is progress. After a binge I IF for a week or two (missing breakfast) but then the binge comes back, or I start thinking I've lost a bit of weight and I can have a handful of almonds. Sadly it seems I cannot just have a handful of anything. I have a food plan for each day wihch does help, but I still binge. I've had 4 binges this week and the FEAR of weight gain gives me suicidal thoughts.

    I need some help, advice and support. Anyone once anorexic and recovered with a primal diet? Please help me. I'm desperate.

  • #2
    Personally, I eat once a day myself. I go all day and then eat anywhere between 1,600 - 2,200 calories in my one meal of the day. I've been having great results, keep getting leaner all the time, love how I feel during and after fasted workouts, have great energy levels...

    So I would say that once a day "gorging" can be healthy. I'm living proof.

    But if you have any eating disorders, I know that this kind of eating style becomes a bit more risky as it can lead to relapses. Even shorter IFs pose a risk. If you find that IFing makes THINK that you can afford to binge and you don't seem to be able top coontrol your urges, then I would not attempt it. You might just have to say to yourself that you won't IF anymore so that you aren't tempted at all to binge and then, likely, overdo it.
    "The cling and a clang is the metal in my head when I walk. I hear a sort of, this tinging noise - cling clang. The cling clang. So many things happen while walking. The metal in my head clangs and clings as I walk - freaks my balance out. So the natural thought is just clogged up. Totally clogged up. So we need to unplug these dams, and make the the natural flow... It sort of freaks me out. We need to unplug the dams. You cannot stop the natural flow of thought with a cling and a clang..."

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    • #3
      Don't have experience with ED's, but I commend you on your efforts & direction.
      I imagine trying to listen to your body's signals and silence the disagreements that are going on in your head urging you to either fast or binge. I think a regular routine of meals and planning like you have done, but even planning out snacks to avoid the emotional argument with yourself, suppose it is a bit like alcohol with AA's, "just one drink" is just like "just one binge", so set your calorie intake for the day and split it between as many meals & snacks as you like, but that's it.

      Have you tried any types of meditation or anything like that, when we sit quiet and just observe the conversations in our head we realise there is a crowded room in our head and the chatter is constant, it takes a while, but just by observing the conversations and not attaching to any of them, good or bad, they slowly quieten, by denying them the emotional energy of fear, dread, pleasure etc. they eventually fall back to their respective places and stop overwhelming everything.
      "There are no short cuts to enlightenment, the journey is the destination, you have to walk this path alone"

      Comment


      • #4
        I have been binge free for almost 3 weeks. Check out the book "brain over binge"

        Amazon.com: Brain over Binge: Why I Was Bulimic, Why Conventional Therapy Didn't Work, and How I Recovered for Good (9780984481705): Kathryn Hansen: Books

        It is great and I don't think I will go back to bingeing any time soon. Primal might not be the best diet for you though. I could not stop myself from bingeing on primal. The best way to do it is to not restrict any foods, even "trigger foods," just eat them in moderation and control yourself.

        But seriously, that book is great and the reviews speak for themselves.

        Comment


        • #5
          I'm a former bulimic. Got that under control years ago, but my weight (and health) were not good for a long time (overweight; not healthy). Last summer, I found MDA and went primal in August, kept with it until the end of November, then hit the wall. Went back to SAD. Tried to rein it in once January rolled around, but then major work-related stress happened, and then something in my personal life completely derailed beginning at the end of February, keeping the tension at a murderous level until the end of April. Since then, I've been picking up the pieces. I've been dabbling with returning to primal since May, and even started the Whole 30 at the start of June.

          And here's where it ties into your thread.

          For the first two weeks of Whole 30, I was doing OK. Low-carb flu, low energy, but I stuck with it. I purposefully didn't log my calories (I had been doing LoseIt before TPB last year), but my weight basically didn't budge. I know I was overeating, but I was overeating healthy foods, so I thought that was OK -- first I'd get healthy, then I'd rein in the calories, you know? I experimented with IF, but usually by skipping breakfast, and then I'd overeat later in the day.

          Then I had the most painful menstrual cramps I've had in years. Years. Completely floored me. On top of that were horrific mood swings -- running the gamut from depression to mania. It was exhausting. I decided to stop doing Whole 30. All of last week, I've been overeating junk food. It's like I'm either binging on healthy food (Whole 30) or binging on junk food, with a half-hearted IF in between.

          So. Tomorrow is another week. I'm going back to logging my calories on LoseIt. I know that many folks here don't advocate counting calories on TPB, but I think I need to, at least for now. When I was doing TPB last year and logging, I lost weight, felt terrific, and all in all did great -- until I did the Whole 30. I think for me, becoming super restrictive (that is, doing Whole 30, with no chocolate, no wine, and no dairy, on top of the no grains, no added sugars, few PUFAs and minimal processed food) is the worst thing I can do for my mental state. I don't know why. But it seems like the more restrictive I get, the more likely it is that I'm going to crash hard and binge. A lot. My weight's back up (I don't want to get on the scale, but I feel it in my clothes and I see it on the tape measure), and I feel lousy.

          So I'll log my food/calories, and I'll aim for 80/20 eating primally. I'm also going to aim for bike riding outside for 30 minutes daily as my slow movement -- and, with luck, I'll be joining a new CrossFit gym near me this Wednesday, so I can begin LHT. And I won't get super restrictive. I've got my fingers crossed that this will work.

          (And I also left a message with a therapist. Sigh.)

          Anyway, I don't know if this will work for me, but I'm hopeful. Maybe logging your calories/food will help you too.

          Good luck.
          F, 44 years old, 111.8 lbs, 4 feet 11.5 inches (yes, that half inch matters!)

          **1st place sparring, AAU TKD regional qualifier, 2/15/15 - It's damn good to hit like a girl!**

          **First-ever 5K race 11/28/13: 37 minutes, 18+ seconds, no stopping**

          Comment


          • #6
            I have read of a few people on this forum who found their best results regarding binging by NOT doing any IF, but rather having a very large protein filled breakfast every day whether hungry or not.

            I also commend you on taking your disease seriously and working hard to treat it. Don't give up!!
            Using low lectin/nightshade free primal to control autoimmune arthritis. (And lost 50 lbs along the way )

            http://www.krispin.com/lectin.html

            Comment


            • #7
              If you have binged 4 times this week how are you still so skinny? Do you starve yourself to make up for the binges? If you are underweight your body might be signaling for you to binge because it thinks you are starving. You might want to try to increase your daily calories and see if that helps.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Drumroll View Post
                Personally, I eat once a day myself. I go all day and then eat anywhere between 1,600 - 2,200 calories in my one meal of the day. I've been having great results, keep getting leaner all the time


                You might just have to say to yourself that you won't IF anymore so that you aren't tempted at all to binge and then, likely, overdo it.
                I'm very lean (body fat recently measured at 19%) I;m not IFing for that, it's a response to the ED cycle. I don't know how to get out of it.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Omni View Post
                  Don't have experience with ED's, but I commend you on your efforts & direction.
                  I imagine trying to listen to your body's signals and silence the disagreements that are going on in your head urging you to either fast or binge. I think a regular routine of meals and planning like you have done, but even planning out snacks to avoid the emotional argument with yourself, suppose it is a bit like alcohol with AA's, "just one drink" is just like "just one binge", so set your calorie intake for the day and split it between as many meals & snacks as you like, but that's it.

                  Have you tried any types of meditation or anything like that, when we sit quiet and just observe the conversations in our head we realise there is a crowded room in our head and the chatter is constant, it takes a while, but just by observing the conversations and not attaching to any of them, good or bad, they slowly quieten, by denying them the emotional energy of fear, dread, pleasure etc. they eventually fall back to their respective places and stop overwhelming everything.
                  Thanks Omni. I hear what you say about 3 set meals and that is what OA recommends too. But if I eat breakfast when I'm not hungry that itself can trigger me too, it's such a delicate balance. I don't think I can snack either as this sends me off the wall.

                  Listening to myself is super important, becasue I don't and I think I use food to block out the noise. Journalling might be good, I'd like to do it everyday, I'll need to find the time. I do take medication and Goodness knows where I'd be without it.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jimhensen View Post
                    I have been binge free for almost 3 weeks. Check out the book "brain over binge"

                    Amazon.com: Brain over Binge: Why I Was Bulimic, Why Conventional Therapy Didn't Work, and How I Recovered for Good (9780984481705): Kathryn Hansen: Books

                    But seriously, that book is great and the reviews speak for themselves.
                    Do you have an ED? Binging can be a little bit different from 'normal' eaters. I can binge with impunity when I'm not having an episode of anorexia, pick myself up and get on with life. But the anorexia brings with it obsessive thoughts about food and very compulsive food behaviour. This for me is worse than the binges as it's constant and sould destroying.
                    It is great and I don't think I will go back to bingeing any time soon. Primal might not be the best diet for you though. I could not stop myself from bingeing on primal. The best way to do it is to not restrict any foods, even "trigger foods," just eat them in moderation and control yourself.

                    Also, I would binge on any diet. Primal has nothing to do with it -why do you think it would?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by jimhensen View Post
                      If you have binged 4 times this week how are you still so skinny? Do you starve yourself to make up for the binges? If you are underweight your body might be signaling for you to binge because it thinks you are starving. You might want to try to increase your daily calories and see if that helps.
                      I think I'm so skinny because I's genuinely lean. I'm far from underweight though. I don'y starve myself at all and I have eaten well 99% of the time. Missing breakfast is my way of compensating for the binge. I skipped it today. I definiely don't want to increase my calories, I might need to eat more meat though and more fat. If I put on weight I'll suffer mentally even more.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by JackieKessler View Post
                        I'm a former bulimic. Got that under control years ago, but my weight (and health) were not good for a long time (overweight; not healthy). Last summer, I found MDA and went primal in August, kept with it until the end of November, then hit the wall. Went back to SAD. Tried to rein it in once January rolled around, but then major work-related stress happened, and then something in my personal life completely derailed beginning at the end of February, keeping the tension at a murderous level until the end of April. Since then, I've been picking up the pieces. I've been dabbling with returning to primal since May, and even started the Whole 30 at the start of June.

                        And here's where it ties into your thread.

                        For the first two weeks of Whole 30, I was doing OK. Low-carb flu, low energy, but I stuck with it. I purposefully didn't log my calories (I had been doing LoseIt before TPB last year), but my weight basically didn't budge. I know I was overeating, but I was overeating healthy foods, so I thought that was OK -- first I'd get healthy, then I'd rein in the calories, you know? I experimented with IF, but usually by skipping breakfast, and then I'd overeat later in the day.

                        Then I had the most painful menstrual cramps I've had in years. Years. Completely floored me. On top of that were horrific mood swings -- running the gamut from depression to mania. It was exhausting. I decided to stop doing Whole 30. All of last week, I've been overeating junk food. It's like I'm either binging on healthy food (Whole 30) or binging on junk food, with a half-hearted IF in between.

                        So. Tomorrow is another week. I'm going back to logging my calories on LoseIt. I know that many folks here don't advocate counting calories on TPB, but I think I need to, at least for now. When I was doing TPB last year and logging, I lost weight, felt terrific, and all in all did great -- until I did the Whole 30. I think for me, becoming super restrictive (that is, doing Whole 30, with no chocolate, no wine, and no dairy, on top of the no grains, no added sugars, few PUFAs and minimal processed food) is the worst thing I can do for my mental state. I don't know why. But it seems like the more restrictive I get, the more likely it is that I'm going to crash hard and binge. A lot. My weight's back up (I don't want to get on the scale, but I feel it in my clothes and I see it on the tape measure), and I feel lousy.

                        So I'll log my food/calories, and I'll aim for 80/20 eating primally. I'm also going to aim for bike riding outside for 30 minutes daily as my slow movement -- and, with luck, I'll be joining a new CrossFit gym near me this Wednesday, so I can begin LHT. And I won't get super restrictive. I've got my fingers crossed that this will work.

                        (And I also left a message with a therapist. Sigh.)

                        Anyway, I don't know if this will work for me, but I'm hopeful. Maybe logging your calories/food will help you too.

                        Good luck.
                        Wow, same but different. Thanks for sharing that. Ironically, I followed your Whole 30 thread for a while and was so in admiration that you had the freedom around food to do that. It's so hard isn't it?

                        I'm going to count calories for the next few days but acutally only to see that my macro percentages are. I think I'm not eating enough fat and this is what is making me hungry and could be leading to some of the binges. I've never been a junk food fan which I think is a saving grace, that can't be making you feel too fantastic.

                        I hope the therapist rings back....Good luck too, I'll check on you for positive results. It's nice to have support.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by jammies View Post
                          I have read of a few people on this forum who found their best results regarding binging by NOT doing any IF, but rather having a very large protein filled breakfast every day whether hungry or not.
                          I totally see the logic in this, but eating breakfast when I'm not hungry sends my food obsession into orbit. However, I think a big protein breakfast when I am could work. As for IFing being bad. I know. I'm full of shame about it, I IF for all the wrong reasons, I am a great example of how IF can cause problems!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There is lots of fructose/sugar in dried fruits, and you can eat heaps of them when they are dried, it would be near impossible to eat the equivalent of a pack of dried apricots. Fructose bypasses your "filled up" signals. Try and avoid fructose/sugar things when snacking.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I had an eating disorder for a while; I was hospitalized for it last year. I had issues with binging and restricting. I went primal 6 weeks ago and I think it's a very healthy way to work at recovery from an ED. It has been helping me by reteaching my body how to know when it's actually hungry and when it's not.

                              Sometimes I still struggle with the binging, but what I started doing recently that has helped so far is just completely cutting out anything sweet. Sweets have been my major binge food, and I've always been a bit of a sugar junkie. My experience has been that by (temporarily - I'm not going to do it forever!) ceasing to consume sweets altogether, I have completely obliterated my strongest cravings for them. I still want a little now and again, but I satisfy it with a small piece of fruit and then either spend time with other people so I can't binge or go somewhere where I don't have access to any binge foods.

                              I'm not sure if sweets are your issue, but if they are (and it sounds like they are), get some Gymnema sylvestre capsules. I got mine at GNC. Gymnema sylvestre is a safe herb that is known as "sugar destroyer" in its native India. Chewing the leaves makes it so that you cannot taste sugar for about two hours, and emptying one of the capsules on your tongue and keeping it in your mouth for a minute or two will do the same thing. I used this last night before going to my aunt and uncle's place for dinner, as I know they usually have ice cream for dessert. I did try a tiny bite of mint ice cream just to make sure the stuff was still working - it wasn't sweet at all. Just minty and creamy.

                              I will warn you that Gymnema is very, very bitter, and that taking it whole within the capsule will not produce the same results as putting the powder directly in your mouth. However, you can wash the stuff down with as much water as you want after a minute or so - it won't ruin the sugar-blocking effect.

                              Something that has also helped me is L-glutamine. It's an amino acid that your body can use like glucose, which helps to cut the carb cravings while your body adjusts to using fewer carbs and burning fat instead. It also comes in capsules.

                              Those are my tips for tackling the biological urge aspect of the cycle... hopefully you are working on the emotional part with your therapist. ED cycles are hard to break out of, but the important thing is that you recognize that it's a problem and are seeking help.

                              Best of luck! Feel free to PM me if you have questions or just want to chat or something.

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