Becky is normally a healthy eater and exercises regularly. She isn’t overweight, but would love to lose a few pounds. She also knows that if she stopped her periodic binges the weight would likely take care of itself.
Becky has also read Foodist and Summer Tomato, and knows that dieting isn’t a good strategy and that she has a tendency to moralize her food choices in a way that undermines her efforts. Yet she doesn’t know how to stop and continues trying to use willpower to both change her beliefs and stop her bingeing, which clearly is not working. She often finds herself bingeing at night after going out with her husband and friends, consuming thousands of calories at a time and feeling horrible the next day.
Knowing that your beliefs are counterproductive isn’t enough to change them, and willpower isn’t the answer. Reshaping your beliefs is difficult and you can hear in Becky’s voice how hard it is for her internalize the idea that pleasure is a valid reason to eat. Her experience to date has only shown her that she loses control around these foods and feels bad afterward, so it is almost impossible for her to see at this stage how a middle ground is possible.
In this episode I help Becky recognize the fundamental limitations of her approach and develop a strategy to start to unravel her rigid belief that she should only eat for fuel and nutrition. There are multiple issues she needs to work on, but she’ll have a much greater chance at success with this new approach.
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