Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Stressful Gluten-Free Day

My Stressful Gluten-Free Day As Told Through Pictures:

Pineapple Cooler and gluten-free waffles
for breakfast-the waffles were based on my coconut
waffle recipe, but I used millet flour instead of rice,
skim milk for the coconut milk, and added in a pureed

sweet potato, my leftover pineapple sauce, and some
chopped sunflower seeds

A post-yoga snack of two slices of ham rolled in lettuce.

I recognize that this isn't food. It is, however, the cause of my stress.
Studying for a chemistry exam. You'll notice my laptop is closed in the
background. If I leave it open, I end up reading blogs and getting
zero studying done.

Lunch was a hard-boiled egg and my pinto bean
enchiladas. I made these by sauteing carrots, bok choy,

pinto beans, and canned diced tomatoes. Then I spread
tomato sauce over the bottom of the baking dish and
layered rice tortillas and the beans/veggie mix, topping
it with a rice tortilla, tomato sauce, and a light sprinkling
of cheddar cheese. Then I baked it for 30 minutes at 400


I make sure I'm taking my vitamins every day now
that I'm eating gluten-free. I take a multivitamin
and a B-Complex from Nature Made.

Dinner was brown rice and pureed
butternut squash, mixed with
green beans and a turkey hot dog. Plus a couple of dried
cranberries for extra flavor. It's an easy meal to take to school and
eat between classes because it tastes good cold.

My much needed post-exam treat. A mashed banana with a
sprinkling of coconut and raw almonds.

My Stressful Gluten-Free Day As Told in Words:

Today was just one of those days. Not one of those, everything's going wrong days, but more like one of those, I feel anxious and yucky and would prefer to stay in bed with the covers over my head days. Know what I mean? We all have them. These are the kind of days that used to send me to the fridge, searching for food to binge on. I'm more aware of this now though, and I know that the fluttery feeling in my stomach isn't true hunger. It's just anxiety, and no amount of food is going to make it go away. I think it's that knowledge of the consequences of bingeing that stops me now. Right now I feel stressed out, but good about myself. If I binge, I'll still feel stressed out, and on top of that I'll feel tired, uncomfortably full, and mad at myself. Not really worth the (very) temporary stress relief, is it?

A few years ago, a therapist asked me what I felt when I was bingeing. I thought about it, and answered, "nothing." "Hmm..." she replied. "That's very interesting." I think that was the first time I realized that bingeing was simply my way of getting a reprieve from my thoughts and feelings. If only for five minutes, I could be so busy eating, I wasn't thinking about anything else. Now, I've learned other ways of coping. My anti-bingeing list is still on my fridge, right there for me to see any time I want to reach for food when I'm not really hungry. Sometimes all it takes is a couple of deep breaths to remind myself that I'm not hungry and to change my way of thinking. I want waffles with gobs of butter becomes I'm going to brush my teeth and go lie down with a good book.

Tonight I came home after an exhausting day knowing that I still had a couple of hours of bill paying and blog writing (at least that part's fun) before I could go to sleep. My chemistry exam had started an hour and a half late (apparently my professor was having a bad day too), and I came home relatively convinced I hadn't done very well. But instead of reaching for those waffles and butter, I made myself a nice treat of a mashed banana with a sprinkling of raw almonds and coconut. Then I brushed my teeth before I could think about it.

Now I'm going to bed, still cranky and wishing I didn't have to get up for work tomorrow. Still convinced I did badly on my chem exam. But at least I didn't binge. At least I still feel good about myself...and I guess in the long run, that will do a lot more for me than an A on an exam.


fartygirl said...

I'm reading this, having just finished a breakfast binge. I made a smoothie with way too much peanut butter. It was huge. It was probably over 16 oz. I didn't even pour it in a glass to find out. I drank the whole thing straight out of the food processor. Now I'm feeling that "way too full" feeling and I'm pissed at myself.

As I was slurping it down, I thought: I don't care, I don't care. But reading this, I realize that it was exactly what you described it as: An escape from my thoughts. Thank you for putting it that way! I have a feeling I'll be able to handle it a little better next time! :)

Iris said...

I'm glad it helped! It's so hard to care when you're in the moment, but if you can take yourself out of it long enough to think of the consequences, sometimes you can get yourself to care.


you're doing great - just taking things one step at a time. one choice, one moment at a time.

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog and spent about an hour reading it.. It's super motivating- especially because I've been fighting the binge monster for a few years too. (I've gotten better at it and it's been about 4 months since I binged now!) It's weird- I never knew binge-eating was common, or that there was even a term for it. I was aware that regularly eating until I felt sick after my parents had gone to bed wasn't healthy, but it took me years to realize I was doing it because of my negative and messed up view of food. Anyways- I just wanted to tell you this is an awesome blog. Your tips are all great, your recipes look delicious, and it's always nice to read advice/thoughts from someone who's been there before

Sophia :]

Iris said...

Thanks Sophia! Congratulations on being four months binge free! I know what a big deal that is!


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