An Important Realization

I cried at the bookstore tonight.

I received a couple of Barnes and Noble gift cards for graduation, so I decided to stop there tonight. Naturally, I found myself gravitating towards the “diet” book section. I was looking for Bob Harper’s new book “The Skinny Rules” or something similar. Then, I started to realize that I know most of the rules of healthy living, I just don’t always follow them. But something else caught my eye. Right around the corner were the self-impovement books.

I scanned them and found a section on overeating. I have been bingeing for awhile ago. As long as I can remember really. I stopped while I was doing Weight Watchers, but that’s because I was unhealthily fixated on losing weight fast. I opened up a book by Geneen Roth called “Why Weight? A Workbook for Ending Compulsive Overeating” and began reading the introduction.

“You cannot think your way out of an obsession with food. You must make a commitment. You must take time. You must feel that the pain of what you are doing to yourself with food is greater than the fear of trusting yourself. You must believe that that the serenity and profound joy of living a life free of the obsession with food is stronger than the fear of what will happen when you begin.”

My eyes started to water, because I realized that I my issues and challenges are with food are not just the occasional “I overate at dinner tonight.” I have an eating disorder. It’s real.

I wandered over to look for a book on Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, because I’m really interested in learning more about the condition and its effects on my body and health. I found one, called “PCOS for Dummies,” that explained:

“Cravings for starchy foods, such as bread and sweet foods, is common if you have PCOS, but nobody really knows why.” The book warns to recognize the dangers of bingeing, explaining that “bingeing is a form of eating disorder, a distorted pattern of thinking about food and behavior toward food. If you tend to binge on a regular basis, you may well have a preoccupation or obsession with food. You probably feel out of control as far as food is concerned. Women with PCOS are prone to binge.”

It also attempts to explain why:

“The fluctuating insulin levels that occur in PCOS and their subsequent effect on blood sugar levels can result in a feeling that you need to binge … Some evidence suggests that cravings for sweet foods and a desire to binge on them is related to testosterone levels which tend to be higher in women with PCOS.”

I bought both books, along with another book by Geneen Roth. Although it’s a relief to know that PCOS could be the culprit behind my bingeing, I still need to learn how to cope with it and attempt to break the cycle. At first, I was apprehensive to purchase Roth’s workbook, because I am not really a “journal-my-feelings” type of girl. But maybe it will help. And right now I need all the help I can get.

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