What would happen?

Today I got asked what I thought would happen if I ate a Nak’d bar everyday? (Nak’d bars are ‘smooshed’ fruit and nut bars). A random question to most people but it was in the context of me potentially expanding my snack choices. I don’t think my friend realised what a profound question she was asking me, but I now want to pass it on. Think of some food item you love and could happily eat everyday – but don’t allow yourself too. What are the reasons? What do you think would happen?

For me and Nak’d bars my first reason is that they are expensive and that I should just make my own. But the fact is I won’t do this, I’d like to, but I won’t. I also like knowing the calories which would be harder homemade (stupid, but true for me). 

If I get past this excuse- which I easily can seeing as I have definitely spent money on other food just the throw it up, the next reason is that I’m afraid if I have them in the house I will binge on them. It’s an expensive binge! Plus, once a food becomes a binge food I then eliminate it from my regular food and have to work hard to introduce it back in. I’m aware a response will probably be that if I ate one everyday then I wouldn’t want to binge on them, but it doesn’t always work like that. I’ve eaten oats for thousands of breakfasts but if I want to binge then I’d go for them, so I am scared to have them in the cupboard. However I don’t have to bulk buy, I could just have a box of 4 at a time. 

So, say if I get past the reasons why I couldn’t eat on everyday, what do I think would happen if I did eat one everyday?

I would feel greedy. I would feel weak for eating something deemed as a ‘treat’ everyday. I would feel that I should show better willpower. I know I’d enjoy them so then would be afraid that I’d want them. And that’s not allowed. It’s not that I think I’m undeserving, I’m just under the impression that I shouldn’t be eating things that I like too much as it shows no self-control. Even if I were told to eat them, there would be a bit of me that feels relieved to be allowed to, and I hate that bit of me, or more accurately, ED hates that bit of me. I’d also be worried that I’d still feel hungry after one as a snack, therefore better to eat none at all, because that want just shows how gluttonous I really am deep down (‘or hungry?’ pipes up my rational brain). 

It’s not that I think I’ll gain weight or go over calories or anything, it’s different to that, which is hard to get people to understand as they’re typically classed as a ‘healthy snack’. It’s not food itself, it’s wanting the food.  This is when eating disorders show their mental illness side, and it’s not about food but it is about food. 

Does this make any sense to anyone?! I’m intrigued if anyone else gets thoughts like this?

Ps: after writing this the crazy demon voice is now suggesting that as I quite like porridge now maybe I need to stop having it for a while and have just fruit instead. I will ignore it, but this is the kind of s**t I have to negotiate in my twisted little brain!

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15 thoughts on “What would happen?

  1. I think I experience the exact same thoughts!! It’s so hard to explain, and sometimes there are different read behind the thoughts, but I have experienced this with foods I like, or just really enjoy. For example: I really like Luna bars (the cookie dough kind!) and they can be a bit pricey. I feel a sense of guilt and deprivation when I eat one, which consumes me more than the enjoyment of the bar itself. I think “I should save this for a day when I’ll REALLY enjoy it, and have this other snack instead” (one I’ll enjoy less today). I also find myself thinking often that I may as well skip eating the treat because I know if I “indulge” I won’t eat anything I enjoy later/might get hungry and not allow myself to eat later. Is that kind of along the lines of your thought patterns? It’s really fascinating to me to look also at the very true psychological patterns there are in brains that have been through starvation.

    Oh! And when I mentioned deprivation earlier: to expand a bit more on that…I have a habit of buying myself a treat, something that is difficult for me to do; and then waiting FOREVER to eat it. I like to know its there I think? Like, sometimes good will expire because I save it so long. I guess this must be an ACTUAL THING because on a podcast, a counselor started talking about how powerful it can be for those in recovery to have a stockpile of the foods they like a lot, and every time they eat one from the stockpile, they purchase another, so that they never feel like they won’t have enough.

    Anyway- I hope this wasn’t too confusing or out there, and that you feel somewhat less alone!!

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    1. Thank you! Yes I buy things and save them too- I think I do it as a test to see how long I can wait. It’s such a relief to know other people feel the same, although I’m sorry that you do at the same time!

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      1. @THELIDDERARY – I totally understand that. I actually started getting a thrill (not the right word) when I’d had something for so long I had to throw it out. It was the ultimate in control. It is something I have to deal with now that I’m in recovery. It’s ED behavior for sure, ugh. Eating all my food and having to buy more is annoying honestly.

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  2. It makes total sense to me! I would rather not eat a small amount of something I like (chocolate is the big one for me) because I would worry that I would just want more and more, so it’s easier not to eat any at all.

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  3. I totally get what you are saying! I have foods that I really like, that I will never ever ever buy because I am not allowed to eat them. Nobody else imposed this ban on me, it is of my choosing, but I can’t stop classifying these foods as “not allowed”. I miss peanut butter like a mermaid would miss the ocean but I haven’t touched it in 7 months. Every now and then I think maybe I can buy a small jar and use it as a treat but I can’t eat it because eating it would feel overly indulgent and who says I can have something that indulgent to eat? Aaaaand because realistically, if peanut butter made it in to my apartment I am 100% confident as soon as I opened the jar I’d eat the whole thing, sigh. I still really miss it though…
    As for stockpiling food, I totally thought I was the only one who does that! I had a chocolate bar in my car for ages, just knowing it was there made me feel better. Car got broken in to, they stole the chocolate bar (among other things) and the loss of the chocolate bar really upset me because I can’t bring myself to buy one (it was a gift) and it wasn’t that I was going to eat it, but having it there made me feel better. Stronger. Because I had been resisting it.

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    1. I’m sorry your car got broken in to, but at least you know there are people out there that understand about you being upset about the stolen chocolate bar! I worked peanut butter back into my life and it was worth the effort- I highly recommend it!

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      1. I told a couple friends about the chocolate bar being one of the things taken and they think I am joking. In reality I’m all “dude, that crossed a line!” *rolls eyes* I’m using a powdered peanut butter right now, it isn’t as good but it helps with the void the missing peanut butter left. Maybe one day I’ll eat the real stuff again…maybe…Congrats to you being able to get it back in to your life! That is awesome! 🙂

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  4. Remember my post of when I got home from treatment, went grocery shopping and had FULL cupboards and fridge for the first time in memory? So yeah, I get this completely!! I am much better at it now; not perfect by any means, but I’m able to have foods in my flat that I’d previously never dream about keeping. I honestly don’t know how I’m able to do it. Some of the foods are still risky. Maybe it’s the expense that stops me? Who knows… but it IS possible. I simply don’t know how, if that makes sense.

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  5. Pingback: The nak’d bar (nearly) everyday challenge – My quiet roar

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