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How To Stop Yourself From Nighttime Bingeing

by | May 18, 2018

“’This will be my last ice cream ever’ is a thought I have had so many times I’m embarrassed by it.” – Paul

Late night bingeing is an especially tough habit to break.

You repeat the same destructive behavior over and over, knowing it’s wrong, but stopping feels impossible because it doesn’t seem like something you can control. Rationalizing the behavior becomes second nature, and you don’t see a way out.

This is Paul’s story. Paul knows his bingeing habit is the reason he is overweight. His late night episodes alone in the kitchen are something he looks forward to, but also wants to stop.

It doesn’t matter if it’s celery sticks or potato chips, it’s being able to eat as much as he wants–with no one around to judge him–that’s such a relief and so rewarding.

Sometimes behavior patterns like these can be changed by identifying and avoiding your triggers or finding an alternative outlet for whatever it is your brain is craving. But, those solutions are only useful after you’ve unraveled why you are using this behavior as a source of relief in the first place.

Today I help Paul find his “why” so that he can find peace and enjoy indulgences without regretting or overdoing them.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

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FOR THE LOVE OF FOOD: Mice trained to binge on full stomach, the problem with HIIT, and black tea is a superfood too

by | Oct 6, 2017

Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

Next week’s Mindful Meal Challenge will start again on Monday. Sign up now to join us!

This week mice trained to binge on full stomach, the problem with HIIT, and black tea is a superfood too.

Too busy to read them all? Try this awesome free speed reading app to read at 300+ wpm. So neat!

I also share links on Twitter @summertomato and the Summer Tomato Facebook page. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you.

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How to Troubleshoot Your Digestive Problems

by | Sep 11, 2017

Amber has been on and off elimination diets for months. After a long battle with all sorts of painful digestive issues she struggles to pinpoint exactly what she is eating that causes this.

She has educated herself well on how these diets work and takes them very seriously. But after weeks of food restriction, analysis and no results, Amber is frustrated.

This frustration not only causes her to lose hope and motivation to continue with the diet, but is now also causing her to binge on junk food.

Amber knows deep down she is not a binge eater and that this is a reaction to her months of struggles. She has tried to eat slower and more mindfully, but nothing seems to be working.

Having battled with digestive issues myself I offer Amber advice on what has worked for me and help motivate her to get back on track.

Together we formulate a plan so that she can get off the elimination diet for good and start enjoying her meals again pain free.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

 

Related links:

Too Many Vegetables? How To Prevent Gas and Digestive Problems Caused By Healthy Eating

5 Simple Ways To Eat More Probiotics

7 Reasons Keeping a Food Journal is Better Than Counting Calories – What-the-Hell Effect

VSL #3 Probiotic

 

Listen:

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If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please fill out the form here and tell us your story.

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Why “Only Eat When You’re Hungry” Is Terrible Diet Advice

by | Sep 6, 2017

I hear it all the time. People reach out to me who have been trying desperately to eat healthier or lose weight, lamenting their lack of willpower.

“I try to eat only when I’m hungry, but I just can’t seem to keep my hands out of the snack bowl at work.”

It isn’t always the snack bowl. Sometimes it’s the cracker box before dinner or the peanut butter at night. Whatever the source of the downfall it is always laden with a side of guilt and self-loathing.

On the surface the idea makes sense. If you only eat when you’re hungry then you should be providing yourself just enough fuel to be healthy without overdoing it on calories.

The problem is that you aren’t a car (or a Nutricon), and fuel isn’t the only reason you eat. And the longer you pretend that’s an achievable goal, the longer you will suffer.

Humans eat for many reasons. Hunger is obviously a big one, but there are several others.

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FOR THE LOVE OF FOOD: Dinner is your enemy, vegetarians suffer from depression, and vitamin B supplements cause cancer

by | Sep 1, 2017

Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

Next week’s Mindful Meal Challenge will start again on Monday. Sign up now to join us!

This week dinner is your enemy, vegetarians suffer from depression, and vitamin B supplements cause cancer.

Too busy to read them all? Try this awesome free speed reading app to read at 300+ wpm. So neat!

I also share links on Twitter @summertomato and the Summer Tomato Facebook page. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you.

Read the rest of this story »

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How to Recognize Your Limiting Beliefs to Change an Unhealthy Behavior

by | Jun 19, 2017

Once or twice a week Allison and her husband decide to order take-out for dinner. They find fun reasons to celebrate, often making a night out of it by renting a movie and having a couple drinks to go along with the food delivery. It is a good time and sharing these moments together brings a lot of joy to their relationship.

Theoretically there is nothing unhealthy about this behavior. But for Allison and her husband the problem is the amount of food that is ordered and how much of it is consumed. It is not uncommon for them to order two extra large pizzas and eat one each.

Allison knows the amount of food she and her husband are consuming on these nights is not healthy and has seen a fluctuation in their weights. To compensate for the extra calories she often turns to dieting tactics and maintains a very intense exercise routine. She and her husband have tried cooking at home to compensate for their binges and have even planted a garden to inspire them to eat more vegetables, but eventually their willpower gives out and the co-bingeing ritual repeats.

Allison wants to change this unhealthy behavior, but she cannot seem to stop herself from doing it. Throughout the episode Allison and I investigate why she is over ordering take-out and discover that she has many limiting beliefs around what she considers to be healthy behavior. It becomes clear that these limiting beliefs have created blind spots for her, which are preventing her from seeing a solution.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

 

Related links:

Foodist, by Darya Rose, Ph.D.

The Mindful Meal Challenge

How to develop confidence in your ability to get healthy (podcast)

The No.1 Thing That Prevents You From Changing Your Habits

 

Listen:

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Listen on Soundcloud

 

If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please fill out the form here and tell us your story.

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FOR THE LOVE OF FOOD: The real reason diets don’t work, the best exercise for aging, and a new clue to binge eating

by | Jun 2, 2017

Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

Next week’s Mindful Meal Challenge will start again on Monday. Sign up now to join us!

This week the real reason diets don’t work, the best exercise for aging, and a new clue to binge eating.

Too busy to read them all? Try this awesome free speed reading app to read at 300+ wpm. So neat!

I also share links on Twitter @summertomato and the Summer Tomato Facebook page. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you.

Read the rest of this story »

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How to Stop Bingeing After Going Out With Friends

by | May 15, 2017

Becky is normally a healthy eater and exercises regularly. She isn’t overweight, but would love to lose a few pounds. She also knows that if she stopped her periodic binges the weight would likely take care of itself.

Becky has also read Foodist and Summer Tomato, and knows that dieting isn’t a good strategy and that she has a tendency to moralize her food choices in a way that undermines her efforts. Yet she doesn’t know how to stop and continues trying to use willpower to both change her beliefs and stop her bingeing, which clearly is not working. She often finds herself bingeing at night after going out with her husband and friends, consuming thousands of calories at a time and feeling horrible the next day.

Knowing that your beliefs are counterproductive isn’t enough to change them, and willpower isn’t the answer. Reshaping your beliefs is difficult and you can hear in Becky’s voice how hard it is for her internalize the idea that pleasure is a valid reason to eat. Her experience to date has only shown her that she loses control around these foods and feels bad afterward, so it is almost impossible for her to see at this stage how a middle ground is possible.

In this episode I help Becky recognize the fundamental limitations of her approach and develop a strategy to start to unravel her rigid belief that she should only eat for fuel and nutrition. There are multiple issues she needs to work on, but she’ll have a much greater chance at success with this new approach.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

 

Related links:

No, You Don’t Deserve That Indulgence Today

 

Listen:

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If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please fill out the form here and tell us your story.

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How to Troubleshoot a Single Mysterious Bad Habit

by | May 9, 2017

Sometimes it feels like you have everything figured out except for this one, baffling problem that seems to defy all logic. For Nina, her healthstyle has always been rather straightforward. She enjoys eating healthy, she understands the value of indulgences, and can easily adjust her behavior to align with her values in almost every circumstance. Almost.

Nina reached out to me because she can’t understand why she binges on junk food during her babysitting job, despite knowing it’s a bad decision and not worth it. She has tried a few things to stop, and had a bit of success, but still doesn’t feel like she has control over her behavior in this one, specific circumstance.

As is often the case when a very specific context becomes a trigger for an intractable habit, Nina can lucidly describe her issue and the circumstances that cause it to arise. She knows she’ll regret her actions, she knows Cheetos and Cinnamon Toast Crunch aren’t special on a random Thursday afternoon, and she knows it’ll impact her ability to enjoy herself after she leaves. What she can’t figure out is why she continues to act in a way she doesn’t like, despite this self-awareness.

For Nina, solving this mystery requires reframing an old habit in a new light. Even though the circumstances have changed for her as an adult, she is acting out an old behavior she developed as a child. As a result, she lacks the perspective necessary to recognize a solution that is right under her nose.

Together Nina and I come up with a simple way for her to hit pause on the autopilot caused by the babysitting trigger and pull herself back into the present moment so she can make a more rational and value-based choice in behavior.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

 

Listen:

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Listen on Soundcloud

 

If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please fill out the form here and tell us your story.

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How Reshanda Overcame Binge Eating and Lost 28 Lbs

by | Apr 19, 2017

Reshanda had a very stressful job that ultimately led her to develop a binge eating habit and gain a significant amount of weight. The weight gain naturally led her to try to correct it with dieting, which instead led instead to more bingeing.

In her work to find the solution to her bingeing and weight gain, Reshanda stumbled upon Summer Tomato and started addressing her habits and psychology. As an active part of the community here and on Facebook, I’ve watched her develop new habits over the years from learning to cook in Foodist Kitchen to mindful eating in the Mindful Meal Challenge.

Today Reshanda shares her story of how she overcame bingeing, lost 28 lbs, and more importantly learned how to develop the self-compassion, mindfulness and habits she needs to live a fulfilling life that isn’t dictated by stress and avoidance.

Her story is incredibly powerful and full of wisdom and insights into how to develop the psychological tools to build a sustainable and life-affirming healthstyle. It’s an incredible story that shows the power of self-reflection to solve even the deepest and most intractable problems.

Wish you had more time to listen to the podcast? I use an app called Overcast (no affiliation) to play back my favorite podcasts at faster speeds, dynamically shortening silences in talk shows so it doesn’t sound weird. It’s pretty rad.

 

Related links:

Foodist Kitchen

Mindful Meal Challenge

The 4-Hour Body, by Tim Ferriss

Triggers, by Marshall Goldsmith

The “I Don’t Feel Like It” Fallacy

I Thought It Was Just Me and critical awareness by Brené Brown

Calm app

 

Listen:

Listen on iTunes

Listen on Stitcher

Listen on Soundcloud

 

If you’d like to be a guest on the show, please fill out the form here and tell us your story.

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