HOLIDAY WEIGHT GAIN & OVER EATING – Why You Do it and How to STOP! // Diet Recovery

Uncategorized Mar 09, 2020

A lot of people have so much anxiety around the holidays for fear of the foods, feeling out of control around the food and fear of their waistline changing. They may gain weight easily (think people who say: “I just look at the food and gain weight!”) and then quickly return to a diet to lose it all once holidays are over. I want to share with you from my personal experience and research why people binge eat, over eat and gain weight around the holidays and how to break this cycle for good!

I want to first share my past personal story binge eating and my weight drastically fluctuating around the holiday season..

I used to dread Thanksgiving dinner as well as Christmas or any other holiday where there are lots of good calorically dense foods. I would get so overwhelmed to where it was all consuming.

All I could think about was the food.

It was my “cheat day” and I could eat all I want, but then I would restrict myself for the rest of the year.

I would eat and eat until physically stuffed but still mentally wanting more food. I could never feel satisfied.

I would literally stuff myself sick. I would binge hardcore and some holidays I got to the point of purging in the bathroom because the guilt and shame for eating so much and the fear to gain weight and lose my boy leanness, was the last thing I wanted.

I would feel so crazy around the food, as if something would take over me, and I would go on auto pilot, eating until it hurt so bad I could barely breath or move.

I would feel so ashamed like “how could something like food hold so much power over me?”

I remember making vows to myself that next time I wouldn’t binge, I would try to tell myself affirmations so I wouldn’t “lose control” and that I would maintain willpower this time, but low and behold, I couldn’t do it, and each time it got harder to control myself and the cravings got worse..

I would write poetry and journal entries about how it felt to be taken over by a binge, and how I hated myself for it.. I felt hopeless and disgusting..

 

Ummm but OF COURSE I would binge on as much food as I could, because my  brain and body was coming from a prolonged energy deficit all year long, from my strict clean eating diets and over exercise regimes!

I was not only not eating *enough* or a enough of a *variety* because of my rules and extremes in my diet, but I wasn’t fueling my body properly for the amount of exercise I was doing, because all too often we hear, eat less and exercise more or don’t eat that, eat this, eat clean, vegan, paleo, ketogenic, intermittent fasting, etc – all these things I tried, plus more!

 

The last few years though, are far from this.

  • I don’t binge eat,
  • I don’t lock myself in the bathroom purging or doing enemas,
  • I don’t feel crazy and uncontrollable around food,
  • I don’t feel so stuffed that I’m in pain after the meal,

…in fact it’s the opposite.

It’s just another day to me, it’s just another meal.

There is no fear, shame or anxiety around eating or fearing my body is going to change so drastically during the holiday season, only to hop on the New Years diet bandwagon to get all the weight off and prepare for beach body season.. nope..

my body stays the same within a range, and I eat the stuffing, the mashed potatoes and gravy, the butter, and the deserts that I want. I know when I’m satisfied and I don’t crave eating beyond that, I just don’t have a desire to stuff myself sick anymore, because I know tomorrow  or even later after dinner, I can eat left overs if I want or whatever I’m craving the next day and my body isn’t going to blow up, swell up, and drastically change.

I naturally stay within my set weight range, and I don’t weight myself to track it. I trust in my body, and I am able to gauge hunger and satiety signals.

The truth is, if you allow yourself all foods without restriction – all year round, then thanksgiving, Christmas or whatever holiday dinner, will just be another meal to you and your body.

**Your body won’t be coming into the meal in a state of a lowered metabolism, or weakened digestive system, or imbalanced hormones, and therefore the body won’t feel the need:

  1. for one, to ask for so much energy or food (aka a binge which is just a cry from the body for more energy,)
  2. and second the body won’t want to store everything coming in as fat thinking it needs to store the fat from the food for the future restriction or future famine, aka a restrictive diet or future lack of energy.

So without the dieting all year round, the metabolism won’t be lowered, (which is just a survival mechanism and conservation technique that the body triggers when it senses a lack of energy coming in), so to survive, the metabolism is lowered…

Now, without the lowered metabolism at the holiday season, as a result, you won’t naturally gain a bunch of weight or retain a bunch of water OR have the desire to binge on so much food that you feel sick..

…because the body knows and trusts it will be fed the rest of the season and the rest of the year, and knows from your past patterns coming into the holiday season, the prior year or years, that the restrictive diet or crazy exercise regime doesn’t start Monday or doesn’t start on New Years.

The body doesn’t know it’s holiday season, it just knows “okay, is food consistency coming in or is not, and if it’s not, lets adapt so we can survive the famine, and if it is, we can chill out and bring the metabolism back to regular speed,” whatever is a normal metabolic state for your body’s physiology in a balanced and nourished state.

If you want to learn more about how to heal the metabolism, check out my video “metabolic damage” and to learn more about how to naturally and sustainability maintain your weight long term, checkout my videos “the truth about obesity”  and “how I gained and lost 50+ lbs” to find out more in depth explanations on these topics.

So, overall, know that once you stop controlling food, food stops controlling you.

This means, stop trying to control the amount you should eat, and instead eat the amount in which your body is asking for and the foods it’s asking for.

If you’re coming from a past of restrictive dieting though, your hunger and satiety cues are probably all out of wack and it’s going to take some time of diet recovery to get to a place where you can be more intuitive or be a normal eater again.. you’ll have to go through a period of extreme mental and physical hunger or “binge eating” for a bit to restore the energy balance and heal your depleted body…

but know, that if you listen, the body is trying to communicate to you its needs.

Again, restriction as in, not trying to control the grams of carbs, fats and proteins and then eliminating sugar, bread and dairy if you literally crave them.

The more you say no or say a food is “bad” and off limits, this is a set up for a binge later on, and for the food to become all consuming..

The foods you feel crazy and uncontrollable around, will lose their novelty when you eat them without restriction or guilt. Yes, this does happen, contrary to popular belief.

Whether for you these fear foods are butter, peanut butter, oil, eggs and bacon, or bread and pasta, or pizza and hamburgers or doughnuts, cookies, ice cream or cake.. or for some it’s fruit they’re afraid of but love and crave but have deprived themselves of “sugar.” Or whether it’s just carbs in general or fats in general.

What is it for you? The first thing that comes to mind that you want so badly but fear it will make you unhealthy or fat and restrict yourself from..?

If you fear losing control, but if you let yourself “binge” on those off limit foods consistently, not just a one time cheat meal kind of thing, you’ll find that eventually, if you let it run it’s course, you eat as much as you want of that food, as often as you want, then either within a couple days, a week, several weeks or even a couple months, that food WILL eventually lose it’s novelty and therefore, it will lose it’s “control” over you, and at some point you’ll find that you just don’t want that food anymore or as often as you do currently extremely crave..

That “all-consuming” feeling where that food “calls your name,” or you can’t control yourself if it’s in the house.

You will then get to the point where you can literally look in your pantry, see that food sitting there and leave it there because you’re just “ not in the mood” at that moment

OR

you can get to the point where you can have a couple bites to satisfy your craving (or more if you want more obviously), feel 100% satisfied and then move on with your life, without bingeing on the whole jar or box, without thinking about it when you walk away.

Because, if you consciously choose to not eat more because you’ll feel guilty if you were to eat as much as you were really craving, it’s that conscious effort to go against your bodies wishes and deprive yourself of what you’re truly craving and the amounts you’re craving, this is what can set you up for a binge down the road.

Same goes for at the holidays, you can have a serving, whatever size that looks like for you, of the foods you truly want, without guilt, without fear, without the digestive problems and without hating yourself for wanting the carbs, and fatty sauces.

You’ll get full or satisfied as you would any other meal, because that’s all it becomes..

The holiday meal itself also loses it’s novelty.

Because once you get to this place, your focus can turn from food, to enjoying what the holidays are really about – which is not about the food solely, but rather, yes cooking and enjoying the food, (but in a not so crazy and obsessive way), it’s more so about experiencing the joy of your loved ones, saying what you’re grateful for, giving and receiving thoughtful gifts, playing games, catching up on life..

…rather than ravaging the food table the whole time stuffing yourself sick and not having a care in the world about anything other than food and if anyone noticed how much you actually ate or if anyone notices how bloated, puffy and swollen you are the next day from bingeing and perhaps purging the night before..

If you think this can’t be possible for you, take it from me, who thought I was destined to have the obesity genes, and that I had to always control my food intake, watch my calories and exercise to earn or burn calories..

..into going through diet recovery, healing my metabolism, restoring the energy balance, healing my gut, and healing my mindset and beliefs around food and my body, (as in body image, trusting my body knows what it’s doing, understanding the set weight point theory, gauging hunger and satiety cues, and so forth.)

I never thought I could be at a place where I am today, EVER. I always felt as if I had a bottomless pit stomach and hunger, I always was obsessed and hyper-focused with food when I was practicing some kind of conscious effort to restrict a food, a food group, or not eat all day or over exercise kind of thing..

Once I let go of all the restrictions and guilt in my diet and getting my body and brain out of a state of malnourishment, I was able to find a balance of my own, eating the foods I love and not eating the foods I don’t like, exercising when I want to in a way that felt good, not forcing anything.

This is the freedom I was able to achieve, that I never thought was possible.

We’re taught we can’t trust our bodies, but this is a lie.

We were born intuitive eaters. A baby doesn’t come into the world measuring it’s hips or wanting to count it’s calories.. no! It eats when its hungry, it stops when its full, and it doesn’t give two shits about its weight or appearance or that cute, puffy and pudgy soft fat, as a healthy baby typically looks like.

I hope you can understand this, so you don’t have to spend yet again another holiday, fearful and all consumed around gaining weight, feeling guilty and spending another year, hating yourself for craving certain foods and hating your body for gaining weight easily and not cooperating…

and misunderstanding why the body has lowered (or adapted), the metabolism in the first place, but rather empower yourself on how you can heal your body and metabolism, hormones and digestion, to be free from this viscous diet binge purge cycle.

Because you can!

I wish I would’ve known what I do now, when I felt so hopeless and pissed off at my body and food and bingeing in secret and purging and feeling like it was my fault..

or that there was something seriously wrong with me and that I was just a glutton and everything else..

I know a lot of others fall victim to this as well unfortunately, but there is a way out, life is so much more than food and your body, and I want you to realize this for yourself as well!

I hope this article and video has served you well, I wish you happy holidays and hope you have great memories this season!

Enjoy the food, but also respect your body and enjoy your loved ones and all the goodness that the holidays have to offer beyond the meal. If you liked this article please give it a heart, share it with your peeps, and don’t forget to subscribe to my youtube for more videos and topics like this in the future!

 

xx Kayla Rose

 

P.S. I have a special complimentary resource that maps out How to Stop Feeling Obsessed With Your Weight, click here to get your copy!

 

 

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