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zoe & the beatles

just a twenty-something vegan navigating healthy, positive living with a little help from her friends john, paul, ringo & george!

i feel…

well, i feel a lot of of things right now. i feel uncomfortable. i feel disappointed. i feel sad. yet…i’m still clining to a few shreds of happiness. i’m still holding my head up. you see, the binge monster has reared its ugly head. again. its decided to venture out of its deep, dark cave and swallow me whole. at least for the moment.

curious as to what constitutes a binge eating diagnosis? i was, too. and i found this:

A. Recurrent episodes of binge eating. An episode of binge eating is characterized by both of the following:

eating, in a discrete period of time (for example, within any 2-hour period), an amount of food that is definitely larger than most people would eat in a similar period of time under similar circumstances
a sense of lack of control over eating during the episode (for example, a feeling that one cannot stop eating or control what or how much one is eating)

B. The binge-eating episodes are associated with three (or more) of the following:

eating much more rapidly than normal
eating until feeling uncomfortably full
eating large amounts of food when not feeling physically hungry
eating alone because of feeling embarrassed by how much one is eating
feeling disgusted with oneself, depressed, or very guilty afterwards

C. Marked distress regarding binge eating is present.

D. The binge eating occurs, on average, at least once a week for three months.

E. The binge eating is not associated with the recurrent use of inappropriate compensatory behavior (for example, purging) and does not occur exclusively during the course of bulimia nervosa or anorexia nervosa.

well. let’s just say i have A-E on lock down. not proud of that accomplishment.

the past few days have been rough.

right now i am floating in a weird, complex paradox i cannot seem to wiggle my way out of. in fact, i’m pretty sure i’ve been floating in it for a while. i love, love, love being healthy. i love eating fresh, whole foods. i love moving my body. i love the peace i get when all things in my life are balanced. on these days i feel sociable, light, giddy. i can laugh easily, forget the definition of irritated, and simply be.

nutrition is a passion of mine, one which has often times lured me in the direction of becoming a nutritionist. but there is just one issue: i am not healthy.

yes, i am, as candace likes to tell me, “one of the most healthy people, if not the healthiest person” in our group of friends. sure, i avoid meat, dairy, gluten, and sugar because none make me feel my best. and yes, i work out 5-6 times a week and do so for pleasure. and all that alcohol my fellow 21 year olds chug on a nightly basis? i forgo it, too, because, honestly, i really hate being drunk.

but being “healthy” includes a lot of other aspects as well. simply avoiding the food groups which set the stage for an “obese america” does not mean i am healthy. yes, i eat well. very well. however, sometimes, i find i am unable to put the spoon down or put the jar away. sometimes, i eat to the point of incredible discomfort. and i do it all for emotional reasons. i am an emotional eater. i am striving to live a healthful life yet find myself unable to because of, well, myself. recently, it’s been a constant battle to acknowledge my hunger cues and respect my body.

i have always been my worst enemy and harshest critic. lately i’ve allowed too much (astonishingly petty, stupid, ridiculous, pathetic, neurotic, obsessive) negativity to influence my decisions. which leads me to fall into a cycle i’m sure a lot of you can relate to. and, i for one, am so tired of this cycle. mentally and physically.

the cycle goes something like this: i eat well for a period of time before succumbing to the awful monster that is bingeing. after periods of bingeing, i vow to be “good” again, to treat myself well. usually this leads me to restrict more than i should which just leads me right back to the feet of the very monster i am trying to avoid.

perhaps i am trying too hard. perhaps i am orthorexic as well. perhaps all this focus on health has just lead me to be the exact opposite. this bingeing habit (and its severity) has really developed over the past year, when all my issues with food and my body started. it’s embarrassing. it’s depressing. eating in secret because you are afraid of the (imagined) judgement of friends and family is not healthy. having a bad day and justifying it with unnecessary amounts of food is not healthy.

so i am left feeling like a walking contradiction. i strive for health, i love health, yet, at the same time, treat myself the exact opposite. and it all stems from lack of self-love. with self-love comes self-acceptance, two things i am practicing. some days it’s easy. but other days, i convince myself i am suddenly not worth it — for anyone, myself included. so i eat to compensate then eat more to compensate for over eating in the first place. it’s awful.

in this world of healthy bloggers and healthy living blogs it’s hard to find someone who struggles, or at least admits to struggling. and i want to know if anyone out there struggles with this, too. if you do, what do you do to cope? it’s truly difficult to deal with this solo. i write (obviously). and i do yoga. but it’s hard to talk to people about this. i am so utterly embarrassed. it’s hard to tell people who think you are such a healthy person that you eat a pint of ice cream or three servings of almond butter when no one is looking. it’s embarrassing to admit this here. but some how, the vague anonymity the world wide web offers provides me a bit of comfort.

regardless, i am still pretty upset. and confused. and would greatly appreciate any advice or any suggestions as to who to talk to, where to go, how to start this recovery process. i don’t even know. but i do know it’s driving me nuts.

i hope you are all having a wonderful tuesday. i’m going to try to make it a good one despite the wonderful sunshine i don’t get to play in today because of work…from 1:30 to 9:45. i’m going to try to make it a good one because i deserve to be happy and whole. and so do you.



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