Monday, April 1, 2019

Reflection

When I was a kid, my mom made trail mix for me as a snack. I had a container of it in my bedroom. She added peanut butter chips, and M&M's. I loved those parts. I also loved cookies, especially the Little Debbie cookies, Oatmeal Cream Pies, and Chocolate Cream Pies, and peanut butter chocolate bars. When she would buy Little Debbie snacks, I would binge eating them. When I slept over at friends' houses, I raided their cookie jar at 3am.

I remember on one occasion when I was about 11 years old, my mom and I were golfing at a country club we belonged to, and she commented that I would "have to be careful to not get a gut like my grandfather."

As an adult, on many occasions I have gone to a grocery store and bought a box of cookies. I would sit in the parking lot eating them. I could not wait to get home. I was ashamed to eat them. I could not stop myself from eating. At work functions where there was dessert, I have gone back to the dessert table for seconds and thirds. I've had a normal dinners with friends, and then stopped by Wendy's or McDonalds on the way home to get two cheeseburgers and a milkshake. I've stopped by Burger King and gotten a Whopper with cheese, a cheeseburger "side dish", chicken nuggets, and a milkshake, and then gone out to dinner. I've reclined the seat in my car to drive because I was uncomfortably bloated.

I've tried just about every diet. I've lost a lot of weight, and regained it, repeatedly.

The food I would eat in shame would satiate me. It would scratch some emotional itch that I had.

I don't know the origin of my binge eating disorder and sugar addiction. They definitely originated when I was a kid, because I have many memories of binge eating high-sugar foods as a kid. I have fewer memories of binge eating high-sugar foods when I was in high school, college, and graduate school. But the problem definitely resumed when I was an adult. The problem is most likely linked to other anxiety / depression / stress issues that I have. I'm not sure I can remedy one problem without causing another, but I must try.

Diets don't work for me because I lack the ability to control what I eat. If I count calories or points, I will simply lose control and binge eat. This results in feeling like a failure, and starts a downward cycle of binge eating, fasting, dieting, more binge eating, and feelings of guilt and despair.

Abstinence has attracted me because I am an abstainer, not a moderator. I can abstain from something, but I cannot moderate my eating. I can have no cookies, or all the cookies; I cannot just have one cookie.

I've tried abstinence in the past but I had trouble defining what I was abstaining from. I have to eat food, so I cannot abstain from food. Alcoholics have to drink liquids, but abstain from liquids with alcohol. I need to eat foods, but need to abstain from foods with sugar added.

My trigger food is definitely sugar. But it is probably any food that results in an insulin spike.

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