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Binging usually starts with a craving. We want something we really know is not good for us, so we decide not to have it—not because we don’t want it, but because we feel we shouldn’t. This leads to a feeling of deprivation which can, and usually does, lead to binging and guilt, with vows to never do it again.

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Cravings

by Roe Gallo, M.A.

From Living Nutrition vol. 6

It seems the main reason for binging is that we feel deprived. Binging usually starts with a craving. We want something we really know is not good for us, so we decide not to have it—not because we don’t want it, but because we feel we shouldn’t. This leads to a feeling of deprivation which can, and usually does, lead to binging and guilt, with vows to never do it again.

How many times have you taken that first spoonful of ice cream or a cookie and ended up eating the whole quart or the entire box? You figured that the damage was already done after the first mouthful, so you might as well finish the whole box because you believe this will be the last time, and tomorrow you’ll make a new start and never touch those junk foods again. Does this sound a little familiar?

If you have a craving for something it’s usually because you associate that something with a good feeling. This feeling could be purely sensual — taste, smell, texture or it could be a memory. For example, I had a friend who could not shake the coffee habit. She switched to decaf and beat the caffeine addiction and stopped drinking coffee during the day, but she still craved her morning coffee. I met her at a café one morning to discuss this problem. As she drank her coffee, I asked her to sip the coffee slowly, relax and enjoy the experience. Then I asked her to talk about that experience — the taste, ...

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