Sunday, April 12, 2009

A Tough Shift in Thinking

It's funny how when you start thinking a lot about something, suddenly you see it everywhere.

Ever since I've started trying to non-diet, I've begun to see more and more people in the diet blog world talk about eating "real" food and dropping "diet" food from their eating vocabulary. I really do think this is the greatest and most important shift in thinking that's happened in a long time.

I'm so tired of hearing and reading that you "must" eat this and you should "never" eat that. Yesterday, my yoga teacher was telling me how her body had finally given her the message loud and clear that she should give up all caffeine, never have a coffee, ever, etc. etc. I asked her about chocolate--she said that would be next.

I guess that attitude is fine if it works for you, but my response was that my body was telling me loud and clear that I can eat anything I want, but in moderation. I must say, though, that it's hard to do, after spending most of my life fearing anything but hunger. I'm still afraid as I sit here typing at 1:15 a.m. I had about 10 walnut halves early this evening after supper and I still feel full and horribly guilty. Those walnuts were no doubt way, way more than my body needed, though I didn't feel stuffed after eating them. It's just that I still feel them transiting through my body hours later and I keep thinking that I shouldn't have eaten them.

I'm going through a tiny crisis right now. I feel guilty even calling it that, since I'm healthy, my finances are good, my kids and husband are doing well and spring is coming. But I'm feeling all over the place when it comes to accepting and instituting this new way of eating.

I was originally planning to talk about the good shifts I've made since January, but the thoughts that invade my mind have to do with what is still hard to change. I really hate eating slowly and I really detest eating without doing something else. It's alright when there are people around. I can actually eat a bit more slowly, since I have a good reason to stop eating and engage in conversation, but eating alone, without any distractions is mild torture. I've also realized that I feel the full signal so fast that short of taking one bite and waiting 60 seconds before the next one, I can feel "fullish" after having taken just a few bites. I never feel psychologically satisfied. I eat a little bowl of cereal, or a small bowl of apple sauce and the tum says, OK, that's sort of enough. If I stop then, then an hour or less later, I have a few nuts and the tum says stop and I say FUCK this, I want to eat a goddamned meal. And it just goes on. I know that I can't have a meal that doesn't involve more than three sips of soup, a cracker, a small piece of cheese and a strip or two of pepper or carrot without being too "full"...but never satisfied.

Boy, do I feel grumpy, full stomach and all. I'm back to feeling that this McKenna thing makes sense, but that the amount I can "safely" eat is just too small to ever satisfy me psychologically and that's what eating is at least partially about. I'm almost--almost, but not not really--jealous of people who really binge. My binge is just eating a few extra bites of good food or eating some walnuts. There's no safe room for anything fun or extra, ever.

Yup, I'm grumpy.

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