Let’s admit it, we live in a gluttonous society – that’s a sin right? And I have sinned many, many times over! I’m a binge-eater after all – or let’s say a binge-eater in recovery. So, what’s the problem and why don’t I stop? I have come far from the days of eating all day with only short breaks – meaning that I had one long meal that just had rest periods from morning to night. And binge eating is of course tied mainly to emotions. It’s because I LOVE food!! A lot of people do so why this lack of control? Because food makes me feel good!! Not really – maybe in the moment but what about all the after effects physically and mentally? It becomes harder to rationalize eating this way once you learn about food and what it does to the body – harder but still possible to rationalize. ;)
One thing I realized was that I was actually afraid to be hungry. For some reason, even if a twinge of hunger hit me, it was like “FEED ME NOW!” and all-consuming panic. I might be over exaggerating a little but it comes very close. So I realized that this fear of hunger, mixed with a constant search for self-satisfaction and happiness in food, combined with large portions that are available and cheap along with the carb-monster living within me, I am destined to fail which makes me feel bad – and how can I cheer myself up? By rewarding myself with food!! What a cycle, right? Also, don’t forget how addictive sugar and salt is – and the best foods always teeter-totter between these two additives so how do I get out of this self-inflicted hell?!
Well, first let’s accept that IT’S OKAY TO BE HUNGRY. Second, by constantly feeding and re-feeding the body, it cannot stabilize and reach balance because it is constantly being bombarded by food – meanwhile calorie expenditure cannot match the onslaught of caloric intake and nutrient ratios are probably not ideal or just not being met at all, so the body is in constant flux. No wonder I would feel like hell, be sluggish all day and have many side effects such as breathing – asthma related issues, improper sleep patterns, hormone imbalances and mood swings, joint pains (high sugar, low fat diets can cause joint pains and dryness – fats are meant to lubricate and promote elasticity while carbs do the opposite – look it up) and the list goes on and on…
Eating is an important part of proper function within the body (obviously) but so is NOT EATING. There has to be balance and the body needs time to properly function, distribute macros/micro-nutrients and needs to move. Fasting can mean a million things – has many religious connotations but I am not touching on that here. I am referring to what can be called mini-fasts throughout the day in order to force the body to properly partition internal functions.
Just to give you an idea of what I am explaining here – I will refer to some articles (I never really do this because there is so much information out there that I would rather not open up a can of worms but to challenge those that are interested, I think it’s well worth it). These articles specifically refer to cures for Type II Diabetes – and I find the second NY Times article response very interesting – especially the part that type II diabetes can be likened to a common cold so click and read..
I am not writing this blog to refer to diabetes but rather am writing it to make you think about the possible benefits of fasting. I definitely do not support everyone go on an extreme fast but I do want you to THINK about the importance of this and examine if you are guilty of eating too much, too often and not having a way to really rationalize needing all that food. I am very guilty of this and because of my own experiences with food I have looked at this fasting perspective as a way to explain the reasons for choosing to feel hunger at times. It’s easier to say “I am voluntarily going to fast for the next X amount hours because my body needs to do something else other then go into overload from constant food consumption rather than focusing on the fact that I’m really hungry and panicking.” It’s a weird way to look at it, I know, but what can I say – I’m weird. :)
And I have said this before but if you do plan on experimenting on yourself, please do it with medical supervision! I have to say it…