Binge Eating And Athletes
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when I say the words ‘eating disorder’?
Would you perhaps picture a ripped and talented athlete?
We often think of eating disorders as someone struggling with their perception of their own weight. Most of us immediately picturing an overweight or ultra-skinny person.
But honestly, sometimes eating disorders take form within a ripped gold medalist.
Athletes are so disciplined! That’s one of the main reasons I love working with them, but discipline and pressure as an athlete make up a double-sided coin.
WHY DO WE BINGE EAT?
Any type of restrictive eating, whether unintentional or on purpose for athletic training and competition, can increase the urge to binge eat.
The pressure to perform plus the constant restrictions on when and what we can eat results in binge eating when we are finally “allowed” to eat. It will not only make you feel very guilty, but also bloated and your body will not be happy.
STEPS TO AVOID BINGE EATING:
It is not a matter of your will power, it is that you are hungry! If you are deficient in nutrients or lacking fat or protein, your brain will signal you to look for more food.
1. Avoid skipping meals.
Don’t control your appetite or restrict calories. Instead, adapt your training and goals to an individualized meal plan that meets your needs.
2. Love your food!
Several studies emphasize the benefits of eating alongside people and taking the time to actually enjoy your food. It is okay to love food! I repeat: Love your food!! It is okay to love food! You need to fuel yourself with good stuff so that you will not be running on empty and feel the need to shovel in all the bad stuff.
3. Stay hydrated.
4. Get enough sleep!
Sleep deprivation has been shown to alter the levels of hormones that affect hunger and appetite.
Seek help if necessary. Talk to a friend about your concerns but seek council specifically from experts like psychologists or dietitians who have expertise in the topic.
Please feel free to send me an email if you are experiencing any of this. We would love to support you.