I did a pretty personal post on Instagram this morning about how I overcame a food addiction:
“There was a point in my life that I realized I was literally addicted to sugar and junk food. My body was screaming at me and I felt like I had zero control over my actions. I was laying on my bed one evening, crying while I googled “Over Eaters Anonymous in the area”. It was my lowest of lows. I was struggling with PPD, stressed out with a brand new baby, and no matter how hard I tried to not get myself fast food and treats multiple times a day, I couldn’t control it. I knew I had to make lots of changes and I didn’t know where to start.
At this point, I had tried nearly every diet you could imagine, but every single time, my addictions would eventually just snap right back. I knew in order to get different results, I’d have to do something very different. I couldn’t take the easy route, I’d have to actually put in the work.
With a lot of research and time, I was able to get myself back on track. I learned how to listen to my body when it was just whispering so I wouldn’t go too far off track. I learned that instead of going to extremes, moderation was the answer for me as long as I was mindful about it. MINDFULNESS is so important, I can never stress that enough! I still work on this every single day.
I’ve had to discover my personal triggers, like refined sugar and processed foods. Every time I eat anything, I think about how it will make my body feel and that helps me control my portions and the type of treats I eat.
Today I’ll be working on a blog post about the things I do to help my body recover when I start getting off track. I hope that my experiences can help someone somewhere learn to listen and know how to nourish their bodies. 😘”
So, here it is, and perfectly timed because I had to do all of these things today. When it came to food, I didn’t think much about Father’s Day, so my weekend of mindful eating was a bit off. I ended up eating more processed and refined sugar than I would have liked and my body quickly let me know it wasn’t happy. I could feel it Sunday morning and I knew I needed to get back on track, but being the holiday, that didn’t happen until today. Because of this, I went to bed feeling feverish. It’s so strange to think about because I never thought of my body reacting that way to junk food, but now it’s completely normal. Once it is out of your system enough, bringing it back in is going to make you feel gross.
Our bodies go through cycles. If you clean out your system by kicking the junk food addiction, you’re going to feel it fast once you eat something your body has worked so hard to rid itself of. When you don’t listen to those whisperings and keep eating more crap, that feeling will go away for a little bit. Your body gets used to these foods fast, but because they are so addicting, you’ll find yourself losing control until out of nowhere your body is screaming at you for a change. That’s when you’ll have to start all over again, with withdrawals and cravings galore. So do yourself a favor and be mindful. Eat clean and have treats or processed foods in moderation, quickly nourishing yourself with real food right after. If you find yourself off track, here are 6 ways to help you get back to where you want to be. Depending on your situation it could take a day, a week, or even a month, but it’s worth it! I woke up this morning feeling in desperate need of a recovery after the weekend. It’s not the first time this has happened, and it won’t be the last. So for now, here are my recovery tips:
1. Forgive yourself.
Eating the way nearly everyone else does in this world, where junk is available at every turn, is almost inevitable. Guilt is not acceptable. This is where eating disorders come into play. It’s okay and we won’t be starving ourselves to make up for the previous day. Don’t allow thoughts like “I’m so fat” come into your mind. That isn’t helpful. Just move on and have a good recovery day. Thank yourself for being strong enough to reset your body.
Your stomach needs to process what you put in it every day, and getting adequate rest is going to help any off-day. Our bodies are not at rest while we sleep, they are building and strengthening and recovering. I promise, you will feel much better in the morning.
3. WATER WATER WATER WATER
Do I talk about hydration enough? Drink water as soon as you wake up. Drink water all day long. In fact, each time I eat any kind of sugar and I feel it quickly taking affect in my body, I’m guzzling all the water I can manage and visualize it flushing the toxins out of my body. This isn’t because I immediately regret what I ate, because I don’t. I try to never let myself regret things I eat, because again, guilt is just as unhealthy on my mind as the food is in my body. I am drinking that water as a way to nourish myself and so should you.
4. Bone broth or tea.
Do you remember my post on chicken bone broth? If you haven’t read it, be sure to do that. I talked about how bone broth is a natural way to detox. It heals your gut, which is destroyed by toxins, chemicals, and preservatives in all the packaged, processed foods everywhere. If you’ve had a binge day, bone broth is going to be one of the top ways to recover and fast!
I was disappointed this morning to discover I was out of bone broth. I went straight to Sprouts to get what I needed to make some more, but since it takes at least 24 hours, I also purchased some. (CLICK HERE for my recipe.) Bonafide Provisions is my favorite brand because it’s completely clean, organic, and free range. There are no preservatives, it is made then frozen, ready to be sold. I rushed home and heated it up with a little cracked pepper and green onion. I can’t encourage this enough. Any time my stomach starts feeling off, I get a cup of this and feel an instant relief.
Tea, especially ginger or peppermint are going to help with an upset stomach. If nothing else, warm water with lemon will do it as well. Lemon is excellent for digestion.
5. Eat clean.
It should be obvious that recovering from a junk food binge should mean you avoid junk food. There are also things that are harder for our bodies to digest than others, like dairy products, so avoid that for the day. You’ll want lots of fiber and protein. Since I was out getting groceries, I stopped by Chipotle for a chicken burrito bowl. I get brown rice, but only half and add lettuce. An excellent breakfast choice would be oatmeal. If you are an oatmeal person, get Bob’s Steel Cut from Costco. It’s organic and clean.
Bananas are great for bloating because of all the potassium. So are avocados, kiwis, and oranges.
Listen to your body, but get moving. Today I couldn’t even do an entire yoga class because I needed a little extra rest. Other times after an off-day, I want to work harder but need to remember those foods will drain energy. You’ll find if you want to push yourself, you won’t be able to because of what you put into your body the day before. Do what feels right for you at the time, but move. Even if it’s just stretching.
Eat good, feel good. Practice mindfulness and you’ll have much more power over you addictions.
I used to work with a guy named Taige, who is still to this day, the healthiest person I’ve ever known. He’d come chat with his bag of spinach and just eat it plain like someone would chips. I found it fascinating. He had no interest in the box of donuts sitting in the break room that I had been desperately trying to avoid for hours. Taige would nourish his body with only the best food. That was his healthy. What’s yours?