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In my articles on bulimia, I want to answer real questions, by real people...
Recently I was asked about 'taste hunger' and how it's related to binges. I was also asked the question "How the hell do I get rid of it!?"
So what exactly is taste hunger?
Taste hunger is basically eating to satisfy your taste buds rather than your tummy... Everyone - even normal eaters - experience taste hunger. It only becomes a problem when it is relentless, imposing and always on your mind...
In another of my articles about bulimia, I talked about the importance of using structured eating to safely satisfy your taste hunger, and hunger in general.
In this bulimia article I'm going to be talking about trying to kill taste hunger using fake foods...
You know what I mean...
I'm sorry to break this to you... Your body isn't dumb! In fact your body is an amazing piece of machinery - fine tuned to tell you what it wants and to make sure it gets it!
Sometimes, a rice cake just won't do!
Trying to kill your cravings with fake food makes your body retaliate with cravings so intense that you feel like you could devour the world.
Is it something Sweet? Savoury? Crunchy? Smooth? Spicy?
Something warm? Something cold?
Hearty or light?
Ask yourself the questions until you figure out the exact answer!
Once you know what your taste buds are craving, work that craving into your structured eating plan.
and possibly, most importantly...
Keep in mind that at the start your body will most likely continue to have intensive cravings... Please be persistent - it may take time for your body to respond :)
Have you ever noticed how the first bite of food always tastes so damn good... but from there on in, everything goes hazy - and you can't even remember the taste!?
The thing about this type of 'un-conscious' eating is that your body only registers satisfaction from that first bite...
To begin feeling truly satisfied from eating, there are a few things that you can do:
In short, try to be mentally present when you eat. This will increase the satisfaction you get from your meal.
Something else that I did in my recovery was to eat in an almost meditative state...
Close your eyes or eat your meal in the darkness. Chew each bite 30 times. The darkness and counting will help you to filter out the distractions of the world. It's just you and your food... The satisfaction factor is so much higher when we practice eating in this way!
For a long time, your body has been taught to believe specific foods are off limits. It's also bee taught that at times, there will be a shortage of foods due to either mental or physical restriction... Dieting, or thoughts of dieting.
Because of this, it will take time for your subconscious mind to realize that it will be fed and it will be allowed all types of food...
This kind of sub conscious change doesn't happen over night.
For me, after 2-3 months of structured eating my cravings were 80% better. After 1 year I felt comfortable saying that I was completely bulimia free - and that I was a normal eater!
Be persistent... Try to follow your structured eating plan as best you can. When you slip - don't be cruel to yourself... Learn form it and jump back on board!
I see it almost everyday in The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community that I run... Girls learning from their slips rather than judging themselves for it. I can see how it helps them stay on track and move forward towards recovery. (You can lean more about joining my online program and recovery community here)
Continue to put one foot in front of the other and you can't help but get where you want to go!
Article by Shaye Boddington
Author of your-bulimia-recovery.com
and creator of The Bulimia Recovery Program and Community