If you might struggle with binge eating whilst isolating.

Updated: Mar 23, 2020

Most of the advice for limiting binge eating will still apply if you are isolating, it may just be a little more challenging to implement, but stick with it.

Planning and having regular meals and snacks can keep hunger under control. I talked about this here under 'implementing control' but the main idea is to have at least 3 meals per day with snacks in between and try not to go long periods (more than 4 hours) without eating sufficiently.

You may also find a meal plan very helpful. It is something I do with a lot of clients to kickstart their recovery and I would advise it to anybody who is struggling with a regular eating pattern, or troubled by eating disorder thoughts and behaviours. A meal plan is a great way to have what you are going to eat, written out. It doesn't need to be super fancy but it helps guide you on what to eat when you may feel out of control later in the day. You can read some more on meal plans here.

If you binge due to emotional triggers, one way to support yourself could be thinking through the BLAST method. Just ask yourself are you :

Bored Lonely Angry Stressed Tired?

Think of a few things you can do in each of those situations and write it down and keep it somewhere convenient. If you’re in isolation with someone else, they themselves may be a good way to help distract you from a binge, but there are lots of things you could do on your own, from colouring to hoovering or even just chatting to a friend on the phone!

If you are worried that you have too much readily accessible food in the house then think of some other places you could keep it. Maybe you can keep some things out in your garage, or with somebody else. You could possibly keep it in a locked cupboard in the house and let another family member or friend keep the key. Remember that although there is a difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger, you shouldn't beat yourself up about being confused when your emotions may be running high at this time because that's normal, and you are not alone. Using practical methods and tracking what you do can be a huge help to feeling more in control. Take care! AJx

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