1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Our TMS drop-in chat is tomorrow (Saturday) from 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM Eastern (now US Daylight Time) . It's a great way to get quick and interactive peer support, with BruceMC as your host. Look for the red Chat flag on top of the menu bar!

Newbie and a question on wanting

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Fordette, Oct 4, 2018.

  1. Fordette

    Fordette Newcomer

    I just signed up and have started the programme. I am interested in how TMS can be applied to food addiction. I have started the 6 week programme and have watched some of Dr Sarno's youtubes.
    I am a binge eater and also have IBS.
    My food addiction seems a bit different from others. Or maybe I just don't see it.
    The problem is and why I am hoping this treatment works is because I don't seem to actually want to stop eating the wrong foods, like chocolate which I probably eat about 1 kg per week. Some stories I watch people seem to really hate their addictions and want to stop them. They seem to really dislike drugging or drinking. When I am binge eating I want the stuff, I enjoy eating it even though I know I am probably going to suffer with IBS later and diareha later. I hate the side effects that binging gives me. First thing in the morning is the only time of the day when I can say I hope today I will eat healthy and don't have a desire to want to eat junk food and chocolate, but come to later in the day, its like my whole mindset changes. I go to the shop and its like I have no presence of mind, I buy the food and eat it without guilt or regret until much later when I have IBS symptoms. I have tried looking ahead to forseeing the consequences but its like the future doesn't exist. I don't have any emotional attachment to future consequences, so there is no deterrent. I have had other behaviour issues in the past and quite literally the only way I have been able to change is if something external literally forces me to because its in my face. I know I'm damaging my health, but my brain doesn't care. Its just that I want to eat the stuff, and my brain cannot comprehend why I shouldn't. Does that make sense to anyone? And will this programme help? Thanks
  2. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    I'm a recovering binge eater and can relate to this. As the day progressed and the irritations and frustrations of life came upon me I wanted to binge to cope, to make life more tolerable; eating gave me some relief and momentary pleasure - although at the time I didn't know exactly why I was bingeing and for years I didn't particularly want to stop overeating.

    Looking back I was a binge eater from the age of about 7...In the end my brain/body got used to binge 'highs' and then the bodily pain started with a vengeance. For me binge eating was (I eventually realised) a way of coping with a loveless childhood and a feeling of being lost and without purpose in my adult life. I did though feel terrible remorse and shame directly after bingeing, but no amount of knowing what the excess fat was doing to my body would stop the cravings as they were so overwhelmingly, 'violently' strong. I think the programme is liable to help you in the long run because you will be examining your emotions/feelings/behaviours by means of journaling etc., and this will likely change your attitude toward overeating.

    With me, I stopped binge eating before doing mind/body work by not shopping (I get my groceries delivered) and not having any binge foods in the house (cutting out gluten from my diet helped with this) - however, I did meditate daily. I still get cravings but, for the most part, I manage to resist them and if I do overeat it is by a very minor amount compared to how it used to be for me.

    I'm on this forum mainly because I'm working on eliminating the pain in my body. I'm finding that 'checking in' with what I'm feeling regularly throughout the day by asking myself 'how am I being, right now?' is showing me just how tense I am for much of the time. I then counteract that tension with positive affirmations and visualisations of my body being pain free. I've also been noticing how negative my thoughts can be and I stop myself escalating those thoughts by mentally labelling them as 'thinking'; I have noticed that doing this has on occasion stopped any cravings to binge that I might have been experiencing at the time...You may find that doing these kind of things will also help you to stop bingeing.

    Anyway, my advice is to - go for it!...I think, like me, you may uncover a lot about yourself (which is at present probably pretty much buried/hidden to your conscious self) and you'll be liable to end up wanting to stop overeating/bingeing, even though you presently only feel that way in the mornings.

    All good wishes - and welcome to the forum! :)
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2018
    westb likes this.
  3. westb

    westb Well known member

    Hi @Fordette. Well your post makes sense to me! I'm another recovering binge eater who is now applying mind/body principles to IBS symptoms, and reading your wonderfully honest post takes me back down memory lane, but not in a good way. My heart goes out to you because that's where I was for so many years, decades even. I used to feel enormous guilt and shame and despair after a binge, plus I hated the weight that I was putting on. In fact I hated myself. I wish I had an easy answer, because the willlingness to stop what it is that you are doing to yourself, physically, emotionally and spiritually has to come from you, as I found out. But by following the suggestions on this website and by starting the programme you stand a good chance of increasing that willingness.

    I don't know how old you are? My IBS symptoms didn't start until 2011, when I was 62, after two years of severe physical pain following a back injury. Once the back pain receded the IBS kicked in - a reaction to physical trauma probably. I have been fortunate (in a way) because the IBS symptoms then got so bad after eating too much that at one point I was frightened for my health and knew at a deep level that I had no option but to stop. Since then I have been eating healthily and enjoying my meals and I am almost grateful to the symptoms for doing for me what my conscious mind and willpower seemed unable to do. I'm certainly a lot happier, and more balanced, these days on many levels in spite of the extreme reluctance of the IBS symptoms to go away. But IBS does not have just dietary causes, it goes much deeper than that and it's these emotional and mind/body factors that I'm working on now.

    I endorse @BloodMoon's post and her advice to go for it, and her tips re managing the practical side of the addiction. You will learn a good deal about yourself as you move forward. I wonder if you are getting any kind of support, therapy or counselling or something similar? It sounds as if it might be useful.

    But above all, congratulations for starting the programme. This is a huge step towards a better life for you.
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2018
    BloodMoon likes this.
  4. Fordette

    Fordette Newcomer

    Hi Bloodmoon and Westb,
    Thank you for taking the time to reply. I am 51 yrs old and have had IBS and binge eating for many years.
    I think its a transfer from alcohol. I am an alcoholic but stopped drinking 18 years ago because it was affecting my heart and even today I am still get heart palpitations.
    Heart palpitations were worse than anything else. And I likewise had no option but to stop.
    With food I still have to eat of course and I do get cramps and diareha, I don't give any thought or consideration to my health. Even when I stopped drinking it was the annoyance of my heart palpitations, rather than a fear I might have a heart attack.
    No I don't have any counselling. I can't afford it and I am bankrupt as well.

    I don't seem to have the ability to know or understand if binge eating and IBS is damaging to my health.
    I think a lot of my thoughts and feelings are so subconscious that I am not even aware of what is going on with my body.
    People talk about, as you have, about having fear of poor health or other consequences that I guess help you to stop negative behaviours.
    I don't seem to be like that.
    I'm probably bankrupt for the same reasons, just getting into debt on impulse without any conscious thought of purchases, now I'm restricted legally from doing a lot of stuff which I want to do, and rage is one of the few emotions I can feel. I know I have rage about my bankruptcy because I have uncovered fraud in the financial sectors. I get enraged because there is nothing I can do to change things, outside of changing our laws, which I am actually working on doing. Rage is a feeling different than other emotions, but I still don't feel it as a strong emotion. I just know it feels different that other feelings.

    To use an example - I was typing an email once and it must have been upsetting because I was crying, while I was typing it and in a brief moment, I suddenly consciously realised I was crying. Once I became aware I was crying, I stopped and asked myself why am I crying. I didn't have any answer, but said to myself "how bizarre". By this time I was no longer crying, and continued on with my email.
    I couldn't feel sadness but something triggered me to cry.
    Its like I just react on impulse. No thoughts or feelings seem to guide the actions, but something must do.
    I am working through the programme, I think it will help me. And I like the ideas.
  5. westb

    westb Well known member

    I'm really wishing you well as you move forward into healing. I put down the alcohol in 1993 in AA, and I still go to local meetings occasionally.
  6. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    Well, you're on the forum and doing the programme, so there must be at least something going on inside you that is saying 'I/you need to sort this binge eating out'...and that imo is a big start.
    Dr Sarno said that rage is behind TMS, so the fact that you know that you are feeling some rage is also a good start.
    I don't know what country you're in but, for instance, if you're in the UK maybe your GP you might refer you for counselling on the NHS, depending on what's available in your area. I think this might only be offered for 6 weeks or so (if it's offered at all) but I wonder if it could be the first step in perhaps being referred on, i.e. seeing your GP - I'm not a doctor, and am therefore no expert in these things, but - as you seem to be describing yourself as being pretty walled off from emotions - maybe there's some dissociative-ness going on. I remember reading somewhere that dissociation can be connected to eating disorders and other addictive behaviours.

    I too wish you well on your healing journey.
  7. Fordette

    Fordette Newcomer

    Thanks for your comments I live in new zealand i will see what i can learn about dissassociation. In the meantime im working through the program
    BloodMoon likes this.
  8. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Fordette,

    I don't view binge eating as TMS like other things and take a slightly different approach to the issue of food "addiction" (which I don't really buy into in the same way as alcohol or drug addiction).

    Feeling out of control with eating is really difficult. I have been working with the practice of intuitive eating for a few years now, which has been wonderful for me. I don't cut anything out, I just listen to my hunger cues and eat moderately. This school of thought recognizes that most of the time, binge eating is a response to the mindset of deprivation, or the culture of dieting present in Western society. Certain foods are demonized (like sugar, fat, gluten, carbs, etc...) and certain foods are held up as "superior" (like protein). In reality, the feeling of being addicted to certain foods or binge eating those foods is tied up in feeling like we "should" eat certain "good" foods and shouldn't eat certain "bad" foods, leading to ideas of restriction and being good or bad for eating certain things. In this sense, the feelings of guilt and shame around eating can be a bit like the feelings that contribute to TMS.

    This is an alternative, non-mainstream approach to nutrition and diet, but if you're interested, message me. It is very gentle, takes the shame out of eating and does not assume that you (or anyone) would ever not want to eat chocolate, just that eventually you won't binge on it and will be interested in eating it moderately.

    And also, there is great evidence (though not so popular, like TMS!) that you cannot be chemically addicted to food the same way as you can to a drug or alcohol. Binge eating and other eating disorders are disruptive and feel awful but the chemical and neurological process is not the same as a chemical dependency.

Share This Page