How to stop overeating?

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How to stop overeating?

Post by Dannyboy on Sun Nov 19, 2017 2:27 am

So, I have a bit of a weight problem. I'm 170 lbs at 5'6, which puts me square in the overweight side of the BMI. 10lbs of the weight, shamefully, was gained in the past six months due to overeating. It used to be that I could at least somewhat control my weight by only eating dinner and avoiding all other meals in the day, but lately I've become increasingly tempted to eat extra meals, especially when stressed or bored. Unfortunately, most of these meals are unhealthy: fast food tacos and burgers, pizza, occasionally sweets. It happens in sort of a similar patterns to my previous drinking habits, I often do it to reward myself for getting through a tough task or as compensation for a rough day (also, when I do drink I lose all control of my appetite, eating large amounts of bad things with the excuse that "I'll have a headache/feel nauseous otherwise".) Another bad thing I'll do that I used to avoid is that, even after having a large lunch or breakfast, I'll still eat whatever my family cooks for me for dinner. I used to skip out on dinner all the time when I was younger since I had eaten enough already, but since then I feel guilty when I refuse to eat what my mother or grandmother cooks for me. And of course, whenever I eat dinner with my family, I'm prone to taking seconds ( a habit I picked up when I used to skip all meals except dinner).

I've tried a few things to combat this. I've tried to eat the standard three meals a day, trying my best not to fill those meals with junk food. Unfortunately I find that even a healthy meal of say, two small apples and two babybel cheeses can take up as much as 500 calories. This means that as soon as it comes to dinner, I often have only 900 or 800 calories left, and all but the healthiest meals seem to take at least 1000 calories. another problem with dieting I'd that I often have know idea how many calories are in my family's homecooked meals. Most diet apps seem to be based solely on groceries and restaurant meals. In addition, I rarely know what my family is making for dinner till late in day, after I've already apportioned calories for breakfast and lunch. I've also tried to revert to eating only dinner, but I always found myself unsatisfied when I do this and prone to junk food cravings. Finally, I've gone so far as to take my credit cards out of my wallet and putting them in a drawer so that I can't act on my spontaneous cravings when I'm out and about. This has been somewhat effective, though its not helped me lose weight and of course whenever I get a strong enough craving while at home I just pick up my credit cards.

I don't know, maybe I'm just ignorant. I have been trying to get more exercise lately (though, for someone so used to sedentary living, its hard to commit and stay committed to a workout regimen). I know ultimately I just have to work out the will, but I'm completely lost on how to bring out the strength of will in me. Moving out would help, I suppose, but since I'm in graduate school and don't currently have a full-time job, that's not really an option right now. Do you guys have any advice for me?

Dannyboy

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Re: How to stop overeating?

Post by Izmuth on Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:50 pm

Exercise is good for your health, so I wholeheartedly recommend it, but it won't make you lose weight. It's way easier to eat additional calories than it is to burn them off, and the hunger after exercising leads people to overeating.

Can you enlist your family's help? That they cook less food, and you only take half a meal for example? Using smaller plates also helps control portion size.

And instead of cheese, is bean soup an option?
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Re: How to stop overeating?

Post by KMR on Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:20 pm

Dannyboy wrote:I know ultimately I just have to work out the will, but I'm completely lost on how to bring out the strength of will in me.

While willpower is a factor, really the biggest thing you're tackling here is habits. It's hard to build and maintain new habits that you're not accustomed to, and it's even harder to break old habits that are so well established. For most people, sheer willpower isn't going to break that cycle, because your brain's natural psychology is going to fight you each step of the way. So strategies that are focused on making new, healthier habits a little easier to implement and old, unhealthy habits a little harder to fall into can be useful.

Some stray thoughts/ideas:
-Set up a workout schedule where you're going to the gym (or exercising at home) at the same times each week. If you can, get a workout buddy to go with you and help you stay on schedule.
-When eating meals, put a reasonably-sized portion of what you want to eat on your plate and don't add any more to that. If you find yourself getting full, stop eating, and don't feel obligated to finish what's on your plate.
-See if you can make some healthy substitutions with your meals to cut calories. The common example is substituting water for sugary drinks, but things like sauces/condiments can also add unexpected numbers of calories, so see if you might be okay eating some plainer versions of certain foods.
-If you're prone to snacking between meals or like to fill up on desserts, try to limit yourself to one serving of a snack/dessert per day.
-Don't keep bags of food on your computer desk or other areas where you might find yourself easily tempted to mindlessly snack.
-Don't eat straight from the container when having things like chips or sweets. Separate out a small serving onto a plate/bowl and put the container away.
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Re: How to stop overeating?

Post by thebeardeddragon on Thu Dec 07, 2017 3:35 pm

Do you eat large amounts in private? I ask this as some of your patterns were close to mine, a struggled with diet and weight and still do to some extent but 2 months ago I decided to see if the Doctor could help. Turned out that all these years I have been suffering from Binge Eating Disorder.
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