Binge Eating Disorder and the Holidays: Self Care Reminders
Though binge eating disorder (BED) is not remedied by making simple lifestyle alterations, there are self-care actions that will support your BED treatment plan and overall well being.
It may be especially helpful now, with the holiday festivities upon us, to make sure you are giving yourself all the self-support you can muster.
- Keep Connected. Isolation generally makes psychological problems worse. Spend time with caring family and friends, those who have your best interest at heart. Through the holiday season, regularly attend or participate in your therapy sessions, support groups, social, or community activities.
- Keep the Plan. If you have a treatment plan or meal plan, make an effort to stick with it though the season’s celebrations, and never let a slipup derail your efforts. Progress is cumulative, and occasional setbacks will not undo your many small successes.
- Keep Active. Make an effort to regularly enjoy whatever physical activity your doctor okays for you.
- Keep (or start) the Breakfast Habit. Many people with binge eating disorder bypass breakfast. However, eating a nutritious morning meal may prevent you from eating higher calorie meals in the afternoon or evening.
- Keep Away from Diets. Unless your doctor recommends a specific diet for you, and supervises it, don’t go on one. Dieting tends to trigger increased binge episodes, creating a vicious cycle that is tough to break.
- Keep the Environment Friendly. Keep the specific foods that trigger your binges out of the home, or limit your exposure to them much as possible. Consider asking friends and family to keep your triggering foods out of their homes too.
- Keep Nutrient Strong. Eating a lot during binges does not mean your body is getting the essential nutrients it requires. Talk to your doctor about whether vitamin and mineral supplements would benefit your health.
- Keep Cool. Say “no” to unnecessary holiday events and obligations so you can enjoy your personal interests, take time to reflect, and to relax.
Navigating the holidays can be difficult. Talk to your treatment professionals - therapist, physician, dietitian - about your holiday concerns. They can provide suggestions and coping strategies relevant to your specific needs and situation.