(133) I am embarrassed I still struggle with food.

How long have you struggled with eating? Do you remember when it first got complicated? What if you have struggled your whole life after years of abuse, shame and fear? Is there a way to heal in our current diet focused and fatphobic world? Listen now for possible tools to promote your Food Peace journey.

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This episode is brought to you by my courses: PCOS and Food Peace and Dietitians PCOS and Food Peace. You CAN make peace with food even with PCOS and I want to show you how.

This episode’s Dear Food letter:

Dear Food,
Dear oh dear food, you have been the bane of my existence since I was born. I started
with diary allergies that took time to diagnose so from a newborn, my food relationship
has been difficult. That difficulty has morphed into many different things, anxiety
soothing with food, fear of food, restriction, bulimia, anorexia, binge eating and so on.
I’ve struggled to understand you.

When I was young, about six years old, my life changed a lot because of an abusive
homelife, then at seven, it turned to shear torture due to physical and sexual abuse. I
coped by stealing food (at home, other people’s houses, stores and so on), hiding and
eating it. I learned to eat until sick, then purge to make myself feel better so I could eat
some more. One very traumatizing event, I remember hiding multiple PB&Js behind the
trashcan in the cabinet for later and once the event was over, I hid where I thought I
belonged, behind the trash and ate them all, at seven years old… The trauma (really
torture) went on and on and I ate and ate, and I gained and gained. I was also tortured
in school for my weight and lack of social skills. Through all of this, I was caring for my
younger sister since no one taking care of either of us and was also caring for my
parents who could not care for themselves.

As I grew into a teenager my body started to change, but it was changing differently
from others. I didn’t know at the time that it was PCOS at the time, but it was. I was
growing hair on my face, I started shaving my face at about 12 or 13, my body shape
was different, and my weight was going up at what I was told an alarming rate. By 6 th
grade, I was “obese”. Once the torture stopped at home (not in my mind), I was 20, I
kept on eating, doctors kept telling me to lose weight, my mother kept telling me how
terrible I looked, and others would tell me “you would have such a pretty face and eyes,
if you’d just lose some weight…” I kept eating and purging. I had two stays in a mental
health facility and they tried to work on my relationship with food, but that was not the
major reason I was inpatient, there was a much more intense reason I was there. They
tried but I was not ready.

Eleven years ago, at 28, after trying to conceive for about a year, I was diagnosed with
PCOS. It took us three years to conceive the first time which ended as an early loss. I
had six more losses and then no other pregnancies. I ate through all the losses and was
told, had I not been so fat, I would not have gotten PCOS and would also be able to get and stay pregnant by a doctor. I ate some more until I didn’t. I started restricting about
six years ago and lost a very significant amount of weight. I was restricting so much I
would pass out due an inability to my keep my blood pressure high enough and could
not keep my body temperature stable to the point where I wore winter clothes in the
summer. I kept this going for two years then the binging started again. I was never able
to get my weight low enough to alert any doctors of an eating disorder, but I would
guess that is from the PCOS.

I have since been working with a wonderful therapist for seven years and an amazing
eating disorder and HAES registered dietician for almost two years. I still struggle to this
day with the thoughts that go along with an eating disorder. Dear, oh dear Food, will I
ever “get” you? Will I ever “understand” you? I know none of this is about you, but it is
just a way to cope and control one small part of my life when I was unable to control
anything but morphed to lack of control around you. I want a relationship with you Food,
but, it is oh so embarrassingly hard. I do have hope Food, that someday, there will be
calmness and no charge between you and I. Someday I can enjoy you…
Love,
Frustrated but Hopeful

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

I can’t stop obsessing about what I eat {Ep 89}


Are you cycling between restricting and bingeing? Have you left behind dieting, but are still struggling with the feeling of being out of control around food? Is your body image and fear of weight gain jeopardizing your food peace journey? Listen now for some solutions to these common struggles.

Subscribe and leave a review here in just seconds.

This episode is brought to you by my online course, PCOS and Food Peace. You CAN make peace with food even with PCOS and I want to show you how. Join our Facebook group to get extra support!

Episode’s Key Points:

  • What’s the nitty gritty behind our food and body anxieties??
  • We learn at a young age that our bodies are to be CONTROLLED rather than enjoyed! This directly impacts our body image and how we feel about food.
  • Our relationships with our parents can really influence how we feel about food and our body! The connections we make as children stick with us, and inform our relationships as we get older.
  • Familiar patterns (like dieting!) can feel super familiar and reassuring, even if they aren’t ultimately positive patterns for our mental health.
  • Cooking can be an important act of self-care and nourishment!! It can really help us to move past our food rules.
  • Sometimes, when we try to control food and our body, it’s because something else feels out of control in our lives.
  • How can we reconnect with our bodies and pleasure?
  • Dieting and eating disorder behaviors can be coping mechanisms that we use to protect ourselves and distract ourselves! When you’re ready, or when the coping mechanism isn’t serving you anymore, investigate the WHY.
  • Work with a therapist to figure this stuff out, including how to incorporate self-compassion into your life!
  • Recovery isn’t linear, and black and white thinking holds you back! Step away from all or nothing thinking to support yourself in your recovery.
  • Connect with your values! This will help you stay on the recovery path.

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Thank you for listening to the Love, Food series.

I can’t get rid of the urge to binge eat {Ep 084 with Isabel Foxen Duke}

Do you feel like you’ve done everything to tackle your struggle with binge eating? Is there a constant battle in your head over cravings? Listen now to hear some solutions on how to overcome this food peace struggle.

Subscribe and leave a review here in just seconds.

This episode is brought to you by my FREE roadmap: Your First 3 Steps Towards Food Peace with PCOS. You CAN make peace with food even with PCOS and I want to show you how. Join our Facebook group to get extra support!

Episode’s Key Points:

  • The recovery process is NOT linear, and it takes TIME.
  • Isabel Foxen Duke joins to talk about dieting, bingeing, and more!
  • Physical restriction is NOT THE SAME as emotional and psychological restriction… even if you’re eating “enough,” bingeing can still occur if you feel mental restriction. Diet mentality is the bigger thing to break down when trying to break free from bingeing!
  • Cravings are neutral things!! We don’t need to feel shame about them.
  • Emotional eating and binge eating are two different things! Emotional eating is when we eat something in order to make ourselves feel better. It’s a coping mechanism to distract, comfort, soothe or avoid a feeling. Binge eating, on the other hand, is a reaction to the diet mentality. Isabel calls is reactionary eating! For example, when you tell yourself you can’t have “x” food, all you want is “x” food, and then it results in a binge.
  • Food is never black and white!
  • Just because we think we’re eating “enough,” we actually may not be because we live in a restrictive, diet-culture world.
  • Diet mentality tells us that there’s a right and wrong way to eat. Giving up dieting is giving up an attitude around food that categorizes certain food behaviors as safe and others as unsafe.
  • “The Don’t Binge Eat Diet:” when you’re desperately trying to avoid and overcome the urge to binge, which only perpetuates a binge. Think about a bow and arrow… the farther back you pull the bow and the more tension your build, the farther that bow will fly in the other direction when you inevitably let go!
  • There’s NOTHING wrong with emotional eating!! The only reason why people fear emotional eating is because we fear getting fat.
  • Emotional eating turns into a binge when we decide that the action we’re doing is not okay and feel shameful about it.
  • Quitting dieting doesn’t just mean you’ve put down the calorie counts and the weight loss goals… it means we leave behind the “right” and “wrong” with food.
  • When we struggle with food, we have to ask, where is the restriction happening?? Where is the diet mentality hiding?
  • Not dieting is a physical AND emotional issue! 90% of recovering from dieting is about the diet mentality and diet attitudes, and only 10% of it is about the physical.
  • If you are clinging to ANY kind of wagon, you will inevitably fall off!
  • Permission to binge is step one!!
  • It’s time to overcome emotional restriction.
  • You have permission to be where you are right now, and to meet your needs in however you need to.

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Thank you for listening to the Love, Food series.