Posts filed under Relationship with food

How I Overcame Binge Eating + My Top 3 Tips to Beat Binge Eating for Good

It’s official! Coaching with Keia is live on YouTube! Every 2nd and 4th Sunday, I’ll be posting a new video sharing some tips on how to beat binge eating, emotional eating, and live a happy and fulfilling life.

In this week’s video, I share about my honest experiences struggling and overcoming binge eating as well as my top 3 tips to begin healing your relationship with food.

Also I’d love to hear your thoughts, would you please like & comment on the video so I can know what stood out most to you?

How I Overcame Binge Eating + My Top 3 Tips to Beat Binge Eating for Good

>>Watch the video here<<

What Travel Looks Like After You Heal Your Binge Eating (My Experience)

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Last week, I returned home from a trip to Las Vegas with some college friends I had not seen for almost 5 years.  It was a blast reconnecting and exploring the strip together.

If you’ve ever been to Vegas, you know that it’s a city of extremes (What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, right?).  In terms of food, Vegas also goes big...  People come far and wide to partake in the buffets, eat at celebrity food restaurants, and enjoy drinking while walking down the street.  My friends and I did just that and had a blast.  As someone who really enjoys travel, its incredibly freeing to be able to enjoy food and the experience of eating while traveling.

 

But it was not always that way for me.  If you’ve followed my story with food, in the past being at a buffet or being surrounded by “trigger foods” while traveling would have caused me incredible anxiety.  Years ago, I struggled with binge eating, finding myself feeling eating until I was sick.  During those years, I was obsessed with food and my weight… spending so many of my days planning out meals, counting calories, exercising intensely, and feeling defeated when I would succumb to a binge. I hid my struggle with food well because the friends I reconnected with this weekend had no idea about the battles with food I had every day.


I am incredibly lucky and grateful to have made peace with food these days.  So what does eating look like after you heal your binge eating & relationship with food?  Here’s what I can share from my own experience:

 

  1. You prepare your snacks/meals to an extent but also allow room to try new things

These days, whenever I travel, I make sure I pack some healthy, enjoyable snacks for the plane (my current favorites are Rx bars, dried edamame, or some fruit).  I prefer not to get caught in a situation where I’m ravenous and have to eat something I neither enjoy nor will my body enjoy.  Having some enjoyable, healthy snacks on hand makes me feel secure, especially if I’m going somewhere new.

Of course, the degree of preparation someone makes to feel safe and secure will vary from person to person!  This is what I find works for me!

 

2. I no longer count calories or think about food in terms of numbers. Instead, I eat based on what my hunger levels and satiety.

When I’m traveling, food is a big part of the experience for me.  My friends went to check out “Wicked Spoon Buffet” - something that would trip me up in the past. It was an enjoyable experience to try different things!

When you learn to tune into your body, you no longer have to count or measure your food, but wherever you go your body’s natural hunger and satiety signals are available to you.

 

3. If you overeat or eat “something bad,” instead of beating yourself up, you just learn from the experience & wait until you’re hungry again.

Often having strict rules with food would lead me (and many of my clients) to feel guilty and beat ourselves up if we broke our rules.  In my previous post about perfectionism, (Read “A Message to All my Current and Recovering Perfectionists”) I shared how the perfectionist mentality is addictive and dangerous, especially for those of us who have struggled with food.

Instead of an overeating situation leading to a shame and guilt spiral that then can lead to more binging, I may feel uncomfortable and “guilty” for a little while but I know if I just wait and take care of my body, I’ll soon reset and feel well again.


4. There are no longer foods that are “off-limits.” There are just foods I like, foods I don’t like, foods that make my body feel good after eating them, and foods that make my body feel like crap after eating them. I get to make the rules about what I eat.

Again, this is super freeing while you travel!  The more you pay attention to your body and how it speaks to you, the more aligned you can be in making choices that honor your body & not have to rely so much on external tools.

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(Also side note…Speaking of things that make you “feel shitty,” it was funny seeing how everyone was approaching alcohol differently since college.  As we all approach 30, our body’s are definitely telling us it’s time to pay attention more! (ha!))

 

For me personally, traveling and time with friends is all about the experience.  Whereas obsessing about food in the past would have detracted from that in the past, I’m so blessed to look back and see that I can have the best of both worlds these days and can focus on makingamazing memories and times with people I care about :).

 These are just some of the perks I find happen when you heal your relationship with food.  Do any of these perks really call out to you?  What would the ideal relationship with food look like for you during travel?  Feel free to comment below!

 

Stay well, eat well, and savor all that life has to give to you because life is simply too short not to

 

Above all, love,

Keia

 

 

What a Marble Jar can Teach us About Self-Trust and Trusting Our Bodies

I’m currently reading “Daring Leadership” by Dr. Brene Brown, whose work about courage and vulnerability is something that I truly admire.  Having helped many hard working women heal their relationship with food over the past 4 years, I find resonance with many concepts Brene shares.

One of these concepts Brene discusses trust.  From personal experience I can recall times times when I opened my heart up to someone only to get hurt.  Or if there was something I truly desired and things didn’t go my way, I would feel disappointed. For me and many people, the original “trauma” then perhaps led us to close our hearts to letting others see us as we are and to stop going for our dreams.   After all, if you don’t ever want to get hurt in a relationship, then just stop connecting with others or loving, right? Or if you don’t ever want to be disappointed, then just stop trying to build your business/lose weight/write a book, right? It sounds silly writing in this way but in reality, so many of us go through a similar experience where we close our hearts in the face of hurt.

In one of my favorite parts of the book, Brene teaches her daughter about trust in relationships.  After a hurtful experience with a peer in class, Brene did not want her daughter to turn to shame, fear, and close off her heart to future relationships.  Brene then shared a marble analogy that could help her daughter understand how trust is built. In her daughter’s class, the teacher kept a clear glass jar on her desk.  Whenever the class did something positive she put marbles in the jar and whenever they did something negative or were unruly, she would take marbles out. Brene then told her daughter to think of her friends she can trust (“marble people”) in the same way.

“Whenever someone supports you, or is kind to you, or sticks up for you, or honors what you share with them as private, you put marbles in the jar. When people are mean, or disrespectful, or share your secrets, marbles come out.”


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 I really loved this analogy because it applies not only to friendships but to all relationships, including the one we have with ourselves and our bodies.

So how do you build trust with yourself and your body?  The marble analogy also applies. Every decision in support and love for our bodies and selves can be seen as a marble in the jar.  Every decision in disrespect or hate for ourselves and our bodies can be seen as a marble taken out.

When we listen to how our body speaks through what is causing it pain vs. pleasure, in that moment we are putting a marble in the jar. If we hear our body is hungry and nourish it with food, that’s a marble in the jar.  If we hear our body is cramped and needs to movement and stretching, that’s a marble in the jar.

On the flip side, there can be many times that we ignore our body’s signs and take a marble out of the jar.  If we’re starving ourselves because our “diet said so,” we may be taking a marble out of the jar. Anytime we demonize our appetite, hunger, or the way we look, we remove a marble out of the jar.  Anytime we drown our negative emotions with food or we push harder past our current exhaustion, we’re removing marbles from the jar.

Looking back, the version of me that struggled with binge eating was in complete distrust of herself and her body.  She was driven to achieve out of fear. She found herself overworking, overcommitting, and ignoring her needs for rest and rejuvenation.  Food therefore became a way to cope with the stress and feelings of exhaustion and loneliness. Her emotions told her something had to change but because she did not know what to do with those intense feelings, food became the way to drown the feelings out even for a few minutes.

By paying attention to my body, she learned how to eat in a way that supported it.  My emotions and energy also pointed her towards what lifestyle & career would work suit her best.  (It’s the reason why I’ve become a coach today.)

Trust takes time and is built in the micro-decisions we make each day.  If you’re wondering how to begin to this process, here are some suggestions:

  1. Pay attention to how your body speaks to you - Your body sends you very clear messages of what it needs, if only we would pay attention!  For example, when you have you pee, it’s very clear and it’s almost a pain sensation in your pelvis that signals it’s time to get up for the bathroom.  Hunger is also a very clear signal of a stomach sensation or a grumbling.

    What is your body saying right now? Perhaps it’s telling you that you need to stretch and walk around after sitting all day.  If so, get up and do that!

  2. Start tuning into your feelings & emotions - Emotions and feelings are the language of the body. Some people fear that if they tune into their feelings and emotions, they’ll get soft and fall apart. While the key here isn’t that your feelings and emotions run your life, if you’re not paying attention to them, you’re missing out on a valuable information system.  Sometimes before the clear thought or explanation comes, our emotions can signal what is truly right for us or wrong for us. At the end of the day, we all want to be happy - so why not tune into what lights you up?

  3. Examine your internal and external dialogue towards your body as well as your beliefs about your body - Do you find yourself berating your  body? Or are you celebrating all that it does for you to keep you alive and well?

    One belief that helped me to rebuild trust in my body is reclaiming the belief that my body is infinitely wise and intelligent. Wellness is my body’s natural state. I began to look for evidence of this belief. If I got a cut or scrape, my body is already designed to work towards healing. Or if I tune into hunger, my body is already designed to tell me what it needs.. If I “get out of the way” by listening and supporting my body, it works towards wellness effortlessly.

Trust takes time to build in all relationships, including the relationship you have with yourself.  What choice can you make today to put a marble in your own jar of self-trust? Please comment and share below so we can all benefit from your insights!

Stay well, eat well, and savor all that life has to give you to because life is simply too short not to!

Keia



A Message to All My Current and Recovering Perfectionists

As a coach, one of the biggest things I help my clients with is the mindset for developing a healthy relationship with food and themselves.  In our information-overloaded world, it’s not the lack of information that often keeps people stuck but their beliefs and perceptions. One of the biggest mindset blocks I see and had to overcome myself is the belief that you have to get things perfectly in order to be successful.  Have you ever heard someone say something like : “I did so well with my eating.. Then I totally blew it… and then I kept on blowing it for the next 2 weeks…” ? Or perhaps perfectionism can show up as someone using food or another numbing agent to handle the pressure of not measuring up in a job or in school.  Somewhere in becoming adults many of us learned to equate our achievements and external results with our self-worth. Perfectionism is therefore dangerous and addictive. It’s built on shame and fear that if we don’t measure up, we’re not worthy of love… and so often if we “fail” on something, we attribute it to WHO we are and blame ourselves. Perfectionism can also stop us from even trying or starting something because we prefer to avoid the pain of the “imminent failure".”

“The Way You Do One Thing is How You Do Everything” - Why Healing your Relationship with Food will Affect Other Aspects of your Life

Have you ever heard the quote that “The way a person does one thing is the way they do everything?”  In other words, how one approaches any facet of life can be a good indication of how they approach other facets of life.  

I find resonance with this quote myself. I find that if I’m being a procrastinator, sleeping in late, and missing on my calendar commitments to myself, I’m usually putting of bigger important things that are keeping me stuck.  If my apartment is a cluttered mess, I usually find that my schedule is overcommitted where I’ve spent the week running around feeling chaotic. Or if I’m not following through on my commitment to exercise in the mornings, then this pattern of not keeping my commitments and finishing projects is manifesting in other parts of life like at work, my personal goals, and more.

I love this quote because it reminds me that everything in life is connected.  It also reminds me that even if external results (weight loss, new job, a new partner, etc.) are not directly under our control, the internal choice of WHO we are choosing to be and HOW we are choosing to express that in any moment is within our control.  After all, regardless of the place or situation, you are the common denominator in these experiences. Wherever you go, there you are, right?

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In this same mind, I find that as we prioritize our self-care and healing our relationships with food, this soon spills over to other parts of our life.  One of my recent clients had a relationship food which reflected her overall sense of feeling stagnant in life. This sentiment reflected in her career where she felt bored and unfulfilled and also in her relationship with food where on weekends at home she’d often use food to fill the void.  But after really tuning into what was important to her, she began to develop a habit of follow through and focus as she began to prioritize her healthy eating and exercise. By the end of our work together, not only did she start eating more mindfully, she also asked for and received a raise in a job she was passionate about.

Another of my clients was binging multiple times a week and reported feeling so lonely and ashamed after the occurrences.  In our work together, she began to develop more kindness and forgiveness with herself after her binges. In doing so, naturally the binges began to lessen and she found herself showing up as more open and kind in other areas of life.  In her relationships, she also began inviting people to see more of who she was and get closer in relationship.

So I’m curious what this article sparks in you.  Do you believe that the “way you do one thing is how you do everything?”  If so, where are these patterns in life is this serving you? Where are these patterns holding you back?  Now that you know, what will you choose to do about it? :)

I’d love to hear your comments and feedback below!  Know you are so worth it.