Posted on Leave a comment

Why your eating disorder is a coping mechanism

Dear readers,

Your eating disorder is a coping mechanism. There I said it and I bet that you may have heard that before. Either in therapy or some other blog you read. It’s a good thing to understand as a person suffering from an eating disorder that this is the case for you. But also for people who are trying to help you (dietitian and general practitioners).

Maybe it’s a good thing to define the word coping first, because we all use it so easy. So in the Cambridge dictionary coping is defined as ‘to deal successfully with a difficult situation‘. There is something damn funny about this definition. Because most people who have healthy coping habits, can successfully deal with difficult situations. But if you choose your self destructing habits, you can often fool yourself that this is the right thing to do.

EVERYONE HAS SELF-DESTRUCTING HABITS!

the thing is, they come in different sizes. But you can choose to use them or to let them be. You do not always need to do what your thoughts tell you to do. For thousands of years eating disorders have been around. Princes Sissi and the Swedish princes Victoria had them and there’s is nothing to be ashamed about. You should however be active in teaching yourself better coping mechanisms. Here’s a list with bad types of coping. The assignment for you is to see which one or ones you use and be creative with replacing them with new coping ways.

For example: I always smoke when I am nervous > coping is smoking > If I am nervous I will do a little sprint of 30 seconds to relive the tension.

Bad coping mechanism:

  • smoking
  • drinking alcohol
  • drinking fizzy drinks
  • chewing gum
  • too much exercise
  • cutting yourself
  • not eating or little eating
  • eating way too much
  • eating lollipops or having toothpicks in your mouth non-stop.

Not everyone with these coping mechanisms have eating disorders. But it all comes down to one thing: FACE WHAT YOU FEEL.

Hope this helps,

Queeny

Posted on Leave a comment

How to handle fearfoods?

Hello readers,

Let’s start out with one thing. Everyone in the ED community has one or more fearfoods. I WILL NOT name a certain food here as a fearfood, because I know people will somehow connect dots and think that food would be bad and somehow will be going to avoid that. So how can you work towards eating a fearfood?

Identify the feelings

I think a lot of foods get the name ‘fearfood’, because it causes a certain reaction. So I am going to take you in this process.

Food item > emotions > reaction 

The food item could be anything. The emotion that comes afterwards could be fear, anxiety, disappointed, disgust or more. The reaction could be; purging, way to much exercise, crying, binge eating etc.

Recognize yourself? Good, then you have some insight in the situation. So try to write down your emotions when you eat a food item. Try it in the same sequence as above. I ate product x > this gave me anxiety > after that I started a compulsive workout.

It may gives some insight in your behavior. I mean your dad, sis or best friend are not having this sequence so why should you?

Turn that list around

I somehow guess you have a list in your head, or in your room, or on your phone with foods that are an absolute no no. Well guess what! We are going to make that a yes yes. If you can put all the time in making a list with foods you cannot eat, well let’s use it for more activities. Like trying the foods :p.

If you do not want to be stuck in the shitty situation you brought yourself in, challenge yourself! Be brave and fight your ED. I can tell you now, it won’t be easy everyday, but it will get better. The only way you get rid of an ED is by doing exactly the opposite from your ED thoughts!

So try at least 5 days (preferable 7 days) in a week a product that you find troublesome. So it can look like the following:

I ate product x > this gave me anxiety > after that I started a compulsive workout > I am going to eat this product on Monday at breakfast.

Keep this in mind, because we are taking it to the next subject.

Use the 0-10 scale

This scale is often use by dietitians. ‘How do you feel on a scale of 0-10? Ohhh its a 5? Why not a 6?’ We will be using this a different kind of way. So let’s take the part we made in the last sub-chapter.

I ate product xx > this gave me anxiety> after that I started a compulsive workout > I am going to eat this product on Monday at breakfast > On a scale of 0-10, I will give my anxiety a 8.

Do this a week later and review your anxiety.

I ate product x > this gave me anxiety > after that I started a compulsive workout > I am going to eat this product on Monday at breakfast > On a scale of 0-10, I will give my anxiety a 6.8.

Keep track of your progress! It’s easy to get lost in the thought there is no progression, but if you have it on paper, your mind can’t argue with that!

Eat and repeat!

I said it before and will say it again. If you can repeat your bad habits everyday, why can’t you repeat the nurturing habits of giving yourself enough food, love, sleep and less stress? I know you can and so do you. You are going to beat your ED by eating a bite more, having dessert after dinner, eating that fearfood and enjoying what you eat.

Best of luck,

Queeny

Posted on 2 Comments

How to survive the lock-down when having an eating disorder?

Hello readers,

When having an eating disorder and depending in which state it is, it can be that you feel a bit disconnected from the whole corona situation. You don’t want to stay inside, but you want to move. Either in the gym or the park. When having binges or bulimia, you are maybe questioning if you financially can handle another binge episode and if it’s the right choice to go to the supermarket this time. Maybe even your pessimistic side of wishing yourself dead just came a little bit too near this time…

Having an eating disorder is already a form of lock-down if you ask me. By restricting yourself from social events and certain foods it’s already a big punishment to give yourself. So how do you cope with that dreadful anxiety you feel at the moment?

Keep prepping your meals / or follow your meal plan

If you have a structured routine of prepping your meal for the days or are following a plan from a dietitian, please stick to this! Remember your goal(s). Why did you choose for recovery? And stay realistic; your body still needs food every single day… period.

Do not go into your room and sneaky workout!

I am afraid a lot you all are already do this…  (-_-) Don’t lie to the people who love you and don’t feed into the anxiety you feel. If you want to move, I highly recommend that you move with somebody and make it a 30-45 min workout inside. Don’t go on for hours and hours!

Seek online help!

Depending in which country you are, you can chat online with fellow strugglers. In the Netherlands we have Proud2bme.nl. An online platform were they have a forum or an online chat (from 19:00-21:00) daily. You are not alone, how cliché it may sound.

Keep busy or sit down and listen.

For bingers or people who have bulimia tendencies, it can be very hard to fight the urges. You often get the advice to keep yourself distracted. In this case you can watch a movie at home, read a book, talk to someone (by phone or face-to-face). But sometimes if you want to fight the ED, you can stop and just listen to the chatter from your brain. Sometimes you just gotta sit down hear the bullsh*t your ED is telling you.

Keep setting goals for recovery 

Even in lock-down, you can always keep setting goals for recovery. Try some peanut butter on bread, eat your favorite candy or try to eat with your family.

Ask help with the pantry

If you want to binge badly, ask someone at home to put a lock on the pantry or ask the person to go with you when you are taking something from it.

I hope this helped! I never really wrote about this in the past, but I believe writing about this is vital. Even when it helps just one person <3

Greetings,

Queeny