Binge Eating Disorder
There are many reasons why you have a binge eating disorder. It may be a coping mechanism that started in childhood and is related to early trauma. Or it may have started in adulthood, in reaction to more recent life events. Either way, you are binging on food to numb painful emotions and, at the same time, give you the pleasure that you’re lacking in your life.
And who can blame you? We all need a regular dose of pleasure to sustain us. But if we have trouble getting pleasure from our relationships, work, or other activities, we’re going to turn to an outside source to give us that pleasure. It’s only natural.
The trouble is that the foods that give you pleasure eventually start to cause you pain. You see your weight steadily climb, you can’t fit into your old clothes, you feel ashamed of your body, and continually berate yourself for your lack of will power.
Worst of all, the more you eat certain foods, the more of them you crave. That’s because a large component of your binge eating disorder involves an actual physical addiction to certain foods. Foods that are high in sugar and fat, (such as ice cream, cookies, or chips), are the most addictive. They trigger the release of dopamine, a “feel good” neurotransmitter in your brain that gives you a rush much like methamphetamines or cocaine.
While you’re eating, you feel that rush of pleasure, which gives you momentary relief from the pain in your life. But once you stop, the pain returns. So you eat again to reactivate the pleasure. On top of that, refined white sugar, white flour, as well as sugar substitutes (yes, I’m talking about Splenda and the others), can cause your blood sugar to rise and then fall – which triggers a craving for even more sugar.
So in addition to healing the trauma that is driving you to binge eat, we will adjust your diet to help you minimize the biological pull of addictive foods. In time, you will be able to break the cycle of binge eating and experience the pleasure that comes from life itself.