Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Food

I read somewhere that everyone has a disfunctional relationship with food to a greater or lesser extent, and while I wouldn't necessarily agree with this, I do think that it's true in my case. I never used to have a problem with it at all, I just ate what I wanted when I wanted it and didn't really think about it much, which led to me being overweight but completely at ease with my diet. I was brought up to eat big portions, have second helpings and eat pudding with most meals which I think contributed to being happy but large! When I started making the effort to eat less, I was really happy with the weight loss but I started thinking about food all the time. I would spend the whole day exercising my willpower and looking forward obsessively to my next meal, then thoroughly enjoying the meal but wanting to eat more as soon as I'd finished. I was never actually hungry, but I felt like I should be all the time, and constantly craved savoury snacks like potato skins or pizza.

Back in February I stopped dieting after the ball, and since then I've put on 10 pounds. I've had days when I've just eaten cookie after cookie at work, or had three meals, had a bit too much to drink and then decided to indulge my craving for another whole pizza, and every time I ate too much I felt over full and horrible, but I couldn't seem to stop. Worryingly, I also started craving sweet things all the time which I've never done in my life - I've never been that fussed about chocolate and once when I had one of those huge Dairy Milk bars for Easter I made it last until September (!) but recently I've been buying chocolate bars and eating the whole lot all at once (I've never ever just randomly bought chocolate before) or using chocolate as a way to combat feeling down which I've never had the slightest need to do before.

Now I've decided I'd like to feel better about myself again and lose the 10 pounds, so I'm exercising my willpower once again. I feel great, but the obsessive thinking about food and the cravings have started again. I should point out that I diet really sensibly - I eat three meals a day, I eat lots of fruit and veg and I eat good sized portions (although they're smaller than I used to get from mum which may explain something) including two lots of fish a week - yet I still feel constantly hungry even though my body isn't actually telling me that I am. At the moment I'm absolutely desperate for a chocolate bar despite the fact that I'm not physically hungry, I've had a lovely dinner of chicken casserole with raspberries for pudding and I'd feel horrible if I ate anything else.

So what is the solution? I know that I can lose weight if I try, but when I start eating "normally" I put it back on. Will I be stuck in this cycle of cravings forever? Maybe I need to learn what eating normally actually is - I need to find the happy medium between eating a small number of calories to lose weight, and eating whatever I want including far too much fat and putting weight on. It's so hard! Perhaps I should treat myself once a week so I don't crave icecream etc for weeks on end. Any tips are much appreciated!

This entry is rather longer than I intended. I've made myself look like I have a real problem which I don't think I have - I'm just a bit concerned that getting myself to a healthy weight has created a bad relationship with food that I didn't have before. Ah well - I shall carry on being good for the rest of June, and then bring on tour and the Cornish icecream!

4 comments:

Erica said...

I can relate- it is very hard! Always exercising willpower - and if you don't have much of that you don't get far!

Juicy said...

I can totally sympathise with you too Sarah - I love food but I hate it because it makes me unhappy when I eat too much and put on weight. It's so hard to excersise that willpower when there is so much temptation. It's even harder when you're thinking about another person - I was much better when it was just me and I would survive for weeks on just pasta and sauce, ate very little meat, didn't have snacks like crisps and chocolate in the house, but living with someone who likes to eat these things means I also tend to eat more of them. Plus if you want to be sociable sometimes you have to go out for meals, and it is rare that we go anywhere that isn't curry or pizza related!

Oh btw - the green is really hard on the eyes!!

Sarah said...

Colour duly edited. Sorry!

Juicy said...

Much better ;-P