“The Binge Eating Diaries” is a series by Green Mountain alum Jacki Monaco on her experience with binge eating disorder. Follow Jacki every other Thursday as she shares discoveries, challenges and successes on her journey to health and happiness.
My relationships with certain foods are much more complicated than my relationships with others. Certain bingeing foods weren’t easy to break up with, but I didn’t feel a deep seated loss. When it comes to other foods, my trigger foods, I find myself still in love, unable to get enough.
So what’s my trigger food? Angel hair pasta, Hunt’s Natural Tomato Sauce, and parmesan cheese. No one I’ve offered this combination to has ever been fond of the plain, flavorless sauce but I used to eat a pound of this concoction during a single binge. Sometimes I’d pre-prepare for the next binge by cooking 2 pounds of pasta at once, all of it just for me.
Last weekend I cooked some pasta for my boyfriend, my roommate, and me. When it came time to picking out the sauce, my stomach was in knots. I knew if I used a different sauce, the trigger would be dulled, but I pulled my can off the shelf as an option, too. Did I give in to temptation and set myself up for failure, or did I test myself and face my ex-food lover? I personally think a little of both.
Although I didn’t binge, because I was aware of my intake, was in a social setting, was enjoying it, and not feeling guilty at the time, I definitely overate and my body wasn’t too grateful. Feelings of frustration haunted me momentarily after my meal, so after a chat with me, myself, and I, we decided we’re not quite ready to get back together with our once Prince Charming.
***Note from Robyn Priebe, Green Mountain at Fox Run dietitian: Congratulations, Jacki, on what I see as a successful experiment! We encourage women to celebrate the small successes. In this case, Jacki did not binge, she enjoyed the food, and she wasn’t riddled with guilt during the eating process.
Although she felt that she overate, it was still a vast improvement over binge eating on the food. The next step would be for Jacki to explore why she might have overeaten it: Does she still consider it a forbidden food? Was the lack of protein a factor in not feeling full? Was it novel because she hadn’t had it in so long? By asking herself these questions without judgment, she will continue to make discoveries about herself she can use in her recovery.
Do you have a food love that stalks your daily thoughts? How do you tend to that relationship and how does it make you feel?