Compulsive eater?

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Question

I am currently 26 years old and weigh 55kgs. I joined a gym last August and went from 60kgs down to 50kgs. I looked great.

My husband complained, said I was too skinny so I gained 5kgs to make him happy. Now he says that he can see where I gained the 5kgs. I have been retrenced and I find that when I'm stressed I want to eat.

I want to eat sweets and cakes and everything I shouldn't, but then I feel guilty. I sometimes make myself throw up. What can I do to stop eating like this besides taking eating suppresants?
- Anon

Answer

Dear Anon

The process you have gone through and the behaviour you describe is textbook-like. The consequences of dieting: body obsession, food pre-occupation, loss of internal standards, emotional eating, guilt and shame.

To stop eating like this, you have to learn how to return to normal. Normal eating means eating for health and well being in accordance with one's own appetite, not eating in an attempt to alter body-shape.

There are a number of good resources available that can help you regain a healthy relationship with food and your body at www.soundbites.co.za.

Please make the effort to escape diet prison – you have your life ahead of you, and don't want to spend any more time and energy on dieting than you already have!

All the best
– Maya Naumann

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