Night time binges can affect mental and physical health. It can be a big reason why we gain weight. Eating at night can affect how we feel and talk about ourselves. If it happens excessively and compulsively, it is often followed by strong feelings like shame and guilt.
Have you ever thought about why, not long after your dinner, you crave more food, more sugar, more junk, maybe some chips, lilies, ice cream? Often, in particular, when the kids have gone to bed and you have some time for yourself, it feels like it is your time to relax, wind down and zone out. Food seems to be just right for that – at least in that moment.
Most who are affected by night time binges, have tried to stop overeating by allowing themselves to just have a little bit, or have some healthy options. Some set themselves a rule to restrict completely and not to eat anything after 6pm. There seems to be this belief that they need to just suck it up, have strong will-power, change their mindset and follow a diet.
However, the reality is different. It is not that simple and black and white.
Let me tell you this. You are not flawed and you don’t have weak will-power. Binge eating and overeating has usually nothing to do with will-power. There could be different reasons why someone is binge eating or craving food late at night. Once we know the underlying reasons, we can then heal the root cause of the problem:
1. Find out your triggers for night time binges
I have identified 6 potential triggers for binge eating:
Imbalanced and inconsistent diet
Habits and Patterns
Diets and Restrictions
Beliefs and Negative Self-Talk
This guide – 6 key steps to stop binge eating and release emotional weight enables to find out the hidden reasons why someone might be craving food even if they are not hungry.
2. Change your routine
Binge eating is often a learned coping mechanism that we have learned over the years. And when we do something often enough, it becomes part of our habit and routine. Changing the routine of our night can be a great way to break that habit and start implementing new strategies that are serving our life. Maybe you could plan three yoga poses for relaxation and good sleep followed by deep belly breathing at night time. Hot bath or hot shower could be another thing you could plan into your routine and would be something to look forward to.
3. Diet and Nutrition
Late night binge eating can be a consequence of not having enough calories during the day. Those who overeat at night time, tend to be extra restrictive during the day and that starts the cycle all over again. It is a vicious cycle of dieting and overeating. To break the cycle, it is important to have a balanced and consistent diet. Even after a binge I suggest to eat regularly. Be kind to yourself about what has happened and wait until you are hungry for the next meal. Make a healthy and beautiful meal which you can look forward to and makes you feel good.
4. Seek Emotional Support
To heal binge eating we need to learn to feel and manage our emotions and feelings. Feeling and healing. Binge eating and overeating is a sign that there is pain that needs to be addressed and that there is a message which needs to be heard. By practicing mindfulness we can quiet our mind and listen within, without getting overwhelmed by the emotions we experience. Other tools that I have found helpful are: journaling, meditation and professional support.
If food is relaxation and comfort after a long day, then it is worthwhile to look at other ways to relax at night time. Make a self-care plan for a week, maybe even book it in your calendar so that you know what self-care activities you have planned for the nights. That way there is always something you can look forward to – without feeling guilty after. Self-care that makes you feel good even the next day. Maybe you always wanted to try yoga, this could be a great chance to do it 🙂
6. Identify what your body needs
If we see binge eating as what it is EMOTIONAL NEED, then we can start looking at it from a place of curiosity and compassion. Instead of judging ourselves, we can be curious and ask ourselves questions that will gave us great answers. I believe that we need to ask ourselves the right questions to get the right answers. So, instead of asking ourselves: Why am I so useless and don’t have any will-power, let’s try with these questions:
What does my heart long for?
What would I love doing
What would feel good?
For more help and support to identify your reasons for binge eating and overeating so that you can deal with the root cause, book your free call with me and check out my upcoming Food Freedom Formula Program – Free yourself from Binge Eating and Emotional Eating.
Free yourself from Emotional Eating and Stop Binge Eating with Food Freedom Formula.
6 weeks online group program
Start End of October – registrations open now
If are you ready to finally free yourself from food obsession and free your waistline from excessive weight –
without going on another diet and giving up eating cake –
then this program is for you!