(136) Can I stay vegan and recover from Binge Eating? (with Jennifer Rollin)

You appreciate that not eating enough can trigger your binges. Does that include your vegetarianism or veganism too? This week’s letter writer has connected the desire to eat with friends and later binge eating. Have you? Listen to the latest Love Food Podcast episode with special guest Jennifer Rollin where we discuss eating disorder recovery and veganism and vegetarianism.

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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,

My complicated relationship with you began when I was 13. I had become obsessed with body image and thought all my problems would be solved if I could just be smaller. So I began strict dieting, and was eating less than XYZ calories a day. On this journey my brain became obsessed with food much more than body image. I became anorexic. I wanted to be able to stop restricting but I didn’t know how. I was scared and worried I would lose control.

My recovery began when i started seeing a dietitian, who gave me the book “intuitive eating”. If it weren’t for that book, I don’t know where I would be today. I began to eat more normally and gradually gained the weight back, although my mind was still very fixated on food for another year. Once I finally started caring about more things in life than food (about 3 years later) I developed binge eating disorder.

Now for a little more than two years I have been struggling to make peace with my body and have spent many nights crying wondering if I will ever be able to eat normally again. I know that binge eating happens when there is a restriction, which makes me afraid that my veganism is getting in the way of me being able to have a healthy relationship with food.

I went vegan a few months into my strict dieting phase at 13, after watching a documentary promoting it, but that was mainly for ethical reasons as well as health. Now I know that I’m not doing it for my health or anything body related, but my veganism is a very important part of my belief system, and I don’t feel like I could/want to give it up. It’s been five years since my initial eating disorder, parallel with the amount of time I’ve been Vegan. It doesn’t really feel like I’m restricting myself, since I’m so used to doing it and there are plenty of vegan alternatives that I enjoy. However every now and then I’ll be in a situation where everyone else is eating meat/cheese and part of me just wishes to indulge for that moment. I worry that when those feelings are left ignored it triggers a binge.

Love,

At a crossroads

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!

(135) Bingeing was my biggest fear, now its my constant reality (with Nicole Cruz)

Has your relationship with food been through the ringer? Listen as this letter writer describes her initial restricted relationship with food yet now bingeing is a daily part of her life. Have you experienced this too? While there is shame in this for many it is a predictable and vital part of nutritional rehabilitation on your Food Peace journey. It doesn’t mean you are weak it means you are a successful human staying alive. Listen now for more and learn from guest Nicole Cruz.

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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,

The high school version of me would have been the last person on this Earth to ever believe that my relationship with you would end up causing me so much heartache and pain.

I was fine until college. Backtracking to childhood, I always loved you. I was a foodie, never overthought and wasn’t obsessed with the idea of what I would eat next. Food was wonderful, especially “treats” or “junk-food” type items that I didn’t get to eat often. I know there were times when my eyes were bigger than my stomach, but maybe this is a thing that many young kids also experience?

High school was normal. I was active playing a sport that I loved, busy with school, and spending time with family and friends. Senior year, I found myself with more freedom than ever. A lot of it was spent watching tv or cooking and eating with friends.

Then came college. After a particularly sad and confusing breakup with a boy and betrayal by a friend, my college friend group disintegrated. In retrospect, I think I may have retreated into TV and snacks, and there was no one to tell me to do differently. Then, during Thanksgiving break, I realized that I had been too free with you, food, and my “cute little body” was quickly becoming something I was ashamed of and disgusted by.

I’d never had anything but a small body and lived in a family of small people. I decided I would pay more attention to what and how much I was eating. I figured this would help get myself under control. And from the moment I became aware of your presence and your power in my life, things really have never been the same since.

Fast forward through five months of increasingly difficult and dreadful exercise regimens and an increasingly restricted intake of food, I left school early to move home and enter outpatient treatment.

My junior year, I finally transferred into XYZ College. I was ecstatic, but the restriction started almost right away. This time, though, my body was far more resistant to restriction, and it was increasingly difficult to not give in and binge. I returned home after only 3 months, and didn’t return to school until the next summer.

Now, my 4th year of college is almost over. That means I’ve been binging for a year now. It’s hard to believe that I ever was able to restrict at all, because binging is such an everyday part of my life now. Over these past years, I have had consistent therapy, and have also met with dietitians, but it seems like nothing is able to help me. In fact, the binging seems like it’s getting worse and worse – in the past two months alone, I have gained X pounds.

I think I’ve lost hope in ever being normal with food or body image. I feel so abnormal and wrong. In recovery, binging was always my biggest fear, and now it’s my constant reality. I have all the tools and resources I should need to help myself and change, but I’m still doing this.

How did we get this far?!

Love,

Secretly Broken

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 feel so much shame around my binge eating and I can’t stop. {Ep 107}


Are you struggling with binge eating? Listen now for my tips to overcome shame and break out of this part of the Food Peace™ journey.

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This episode is brought to you by my online course, Your Step-by-Step Guide to PCOS and Food Peace™. Sign up now to get on the waitlist for the next enrollment period in April, and receive my FREE road map: Your First 3 Steps Toward Food Peace™ with PCOS. You CAN make peace with food even with PCOS and I want to show you how

Product links may be affiliate. If you click and make a purchase, there’s no extra cost to you.

Episode’s Key Points:

  • People who binge are often overcome with shame, but shame doesn’t promote real and effective change! But there are ways to find Food Peace™ if you’re struggling with binge eating.
  • YOU don’t need to be fixed. The WORLD needs to be fixed!
  • Our eating choices aren’t largely about personal responsibility… it’s bigger than that.
  • Shame contributes to the compulsive feelings we may have around food. If we can cast aside that shame, we can move closer to health. But how do we take away our shame? It starts with embracing ourselves for exactly who we are, and giving ourselves permission.
  • What would happen if you gave yourself permission to binge eat or compulsively eat? Permission and respect will help strip away the shame associated with the behavior.
  • We don’t have to love where we are right now in our body size or our behavior, but we can make room to accept these things and embrace body respect.
  • Your weight doesn’t matter! You can’t tell anything about someone’s health by looking at their body weight.
  • Internalized fatphobia is likely contributing to this shame you’re experiencing with binge eating. That means you need to break down this fatphobia, rather than pursue weight loss for health.
  • Weight loss is not a behavior. We have no long-term control over our weight. The more we try to lose weight, the more disconnected we become from our internal wisdom, the more shame we feel, and the farther from health we get.
  • Our body is WAY more complex than calories-in-calories-out! Food is so much more complex than good food and bad food.
  • Until you feel like you have unconditional permission to eat, ANY nutritional adjustments to our diet won’t stick! Plus, unconditional permission to eat will likely result is a more varied diet, which is more highly correlated with good health.
  • As parents, there are some things we can do to promote healthy eating:
    • Provide a variety of foods.
    • Have consistent meal and snack times to help with predictability.
    • Teach kids the pleasurable side of food.

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.

Is my healthy eating a problem? {Ep 105 with Robyn Goldberg}


What happens when the “simple” diet you were on starts to feel super complicated? Have you started struggling with a food plan that you were told would be easy? Listen now as my guest for this week, Robyn Goldberg, and I talk about how to manage this part of the Food Peace™ journey.

Subscribe and leave a review here in just seconds.

This episode is brought to you by my online course, Your Step-by-Step Guide to PCOS and Food Peace™. Sign up now to get on the waitlist for the next enrollment period, and receive my FREE road map: Your First 3 Steps Toward Food Peace™ with PCOS. You CAN make peace with food even with PCOS and I want to show you how

Product links may be affiliate. If you click and make a purchase, there’s no extra cost to you.

Episode’s Key Points:

  • At the end of the day, diets are MESSY! Robyn Goldberg joins us to break down this week’s letter.
  • Pregnancy can make our food rules escalate… our fitness regime might increase, and we might start getting super restrictive with our food choices.
  • Eating disorders are the silent dilemma in sports injuries!
  • Carbohydrates are our #1 fuel! Cutting them out takes a HUGE toll on our bodies. We need to re-educate ourselves on nutritional needs in way that aren’t influenced by diet culture, and learn how to nourish ourselves both through food and by other means.
  • Find a nutritionist trained in eating disorders to guide you through this relearning process. You need the support! Our brains are inundated with diet culture and disordered ideas, and we need resources and support to help you on this journey. No one should have to recover on their own!
  • Healthy eating includes pleasure, connection, and feeling at home in your own skin no matter your size.

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’m recovering yet fat so why do I have to eat so much? {Ep 92}


Does the journey to food peace just feel too long? Have you been struggling to the point that it feels like it’s time to give up? Does thinking about food just make you tired? Are you struggling to make sure you eat enough every day? Listen now for some insight into this part of the food peace journey.

Subscribe and leave a review here in just seconds.

This episode is brought to you by my online course, PCOS and Food Peace. Sign up now to get on the waitlist for the next enrollment period, and receive my FREE road map: Your First 3 Steps Toward Food Peace with PCOS. You CAN make peace with food even with PCOS and I want to show you how.

Episode’s Key Points:

  • Food can be boring. Sometimes eating can be a chore, and eating decisions can be exhausting, especially in recovery.
  • Permission, self-care, and just “being” are things that the recovery journey forces us to get familiar with. But they can be challenging, and this boredom and exhaustion around food can be a sign that you are struggling with those parts of food peace.
  • Recovery is like an upward spiral… it can sometimes feel like you’re going backwards, but that just means you’re about to make a breakthrough.
  • Continue to work on grounding yourself in ALL aspects our your life, not just with food! Use a barometer check to check in with your body throughout the day. Do you feel tired, anxious, or unhappy?
  • Remember, eating disorders are NOT about the food! It’s an indicator to us that a need isn’t being met.
  • What is our body trying to tell us???
  • Our brains have neuroplasticity!! This means we can change our brains to alter our habits.
  • Remember self-compassion in this process! Eventually, your mind and body will reconnect on its own.
  • Sometimes the exhaustion is related to decision fatigue. Try to conserve your energy for the important, life altering questions!
  • How are our experiences with food replicating our experience in other areas of our lives?
  • Try CBT in conjunction with this embodiment practice!
  • Remember, you may not always have the answer… and that’s okay!!

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.