For most people, eating is not just a way of satiating hunger; it’s a way of meeting emotional needs. Most people don’t realize this consciously, but their eating patterns reflect their emotional highs and lows.
Why else would anyone devour an entire bar of chocolate after a fight with their significant other? Or why would a woman on her period suddenly start craving ice cream? For a few people, eating as a way of emotional respite takes a disastrous form, and that’s when eating disorders like bulimia, bingeing develop.
Life has lost its normal rhythm now because of the Corona onslaught. Many people who have been dealing with eating disorders are now doing much worse. With work from home, non-availability of support staff, and constant stress, even people who hadn’t visibly demonstrated eating disorders earlier are showing symptoms of the same.
Thankfully, there are a few ways you can manage your eating disorders even while leading a super hectic life.
Understanding eating disorders
Eating disorders have been neglected, waived off, and misunderstood for years, even though they have one of the highest mortality rates of any mental illnesses. Did you know that suicide rates of anorexia are three times the normal rate? Anorexia nervosa plagues the mind with a heightened fear of gaining weight, and the patient plunges into malnutrition. Bulimia nervosa forced the patient to purge repeatedly.
Binge eating provokes people to consume a huge amount of food without any sense of control. Disordered eating makes people skip meals and consume unhealthy foods. Each of these diseases has life-altering consequences, so a planned and structured treatment program plus heightened awareness is a necessity. If you or your loved one have such symptoms, seek professional help without any delay.
Engage in Meditation
The most significant antidote to an eating disorder is a calm and balanced mind. A tamed mind will always provoke mindful eating as opposed to a turbulent mind that actively encourages food binges. Breath meditation, mindful meditation, and whole-body submersion are some techniques that induce relaxation. Self-acceptance and compassion are generated by meditation, and these are pillars of self-love. When you begin to love and accept yourself, the need for emotional eating will reduce.
Massaging areas of tension around the body initiates a relaxation response that, in turn, reduces stress. Often, feelings of anxiety and sudden cravings for sugary food also go away. The areas around the back, neck, and shoulders are critical massage zones. So even if you are super busy and stressed for time, a simple 15-minute shoulder massage will work wonders. If you have an electronic massager, you can use that to give yourself a quick self-massage.
Stay connected to yourself and your loved ones
The more human bonds you foster, the lesser are the chances of eating disorders. Dopamine, Serotonin, and Endorphins are collectively called the body’s happy hormones, and science has proved that these get boosted by happy hugs, warm touches, and even meaningful conversations.
Staying connected to yourself, on the other hand, needs much more effort. It means recognizing your emotional pain points and triggers and then accepting all of them. The kinder you are to yourself, the higher are yourself self-love levels, and then you wouldn’t need to crave food as a means of feeling good. The more supportive you and your inner circle are of your physical appearance and unique personality, the less need there is of purges and restrictive diets.
Seek professional help
Eating disorders can plunge your professional and personal life into darkness, and sometimes the patient is unable to control the situation despite the best of intentions. If you can relate to this situation, then now is the right time to seek help from a professional.
The Green Room Psychological Services Inc. offers therapy for childhood physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, trauma and PTSD, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, relationship turmoil, and much more. In each session, the team encourages openness, honesty, and mutual trust between the patient and the provider. They provide a warm and welcoming setting that fosters comfort with each new and returning patient.
With sedentary lifestyles and hectic job schedules, eating disorders have become all the more common. However, it is vital to understand the situation and take the necessary remedial steps. Ignorance is not the right approach.