Patterns of disordered eating are so normalized in our culture that many people don’t even recognize them.
They may even associate these patterns with being “good” or “healthy.”
I strongly believe that healthful and mindful eating cannot be built on a foundation of disordered eating, so it’s important to recognize and acknowledge these patterns in yourself. These are sure signs that you’ve got a case of Starvation Brain, and the only way out is a six-month reset to stop the madness.
Here are a few signs of disordered eating from eatright.org:
- Chronic yo-yo dieting
- Extremely rigid and unhealthy food and exercise regime
- Feelings of guilt and shame when unable to maintain food and exercise habits
- Pre-occupation with food, body and exercise that causes distress and has a negative impact on quality of life
- Compulsive or emotionally driven eating
- Use of compensatory measures, such as exercise, food restriction, fasting and even purging or laxative use to “make up for” food consumed
And here are a few from my own experience:
- Extreme anxiety before a social gathering, knowing you’ll have less control over your food intake
- A list of safe foods and trigger foods
- Highly regulated, often arbitrary, rules about what, when, and how you eat
- Saving up your calories for a special occasion or cheat day
- Staking out opportunities to eat or binge in private
- Feeling overly upset by the presence of cupcakes, treats, etc. brought into your home or workplace
- The compulsion to finish a bag of cookies, pint of ice cream, etc. so you can get it out of your life and start fresh the next day
Do you identify with any of these? Or have any to add?