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Midnight Munchies/ Binge Eating
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Dr_Steff
Level

Join date: Jul 2010
Posts: 4

I've been working on building my physique for the last year, and have been following Christian's carb cycling program for a few weeks. I'm noticing some nice muscle development, which is great, but I'm having some issues with late-night eating. I eat really clean during the day, but I find myself eating late at night, not really because I am hungry, but just out of boredom.

Occasionally, I end up in an all-out binge, and I feel like I've just ruined my entire day's progress and need to work out twice as hard the next day to cancel out the binge. I end up eating lots of carbs when I go on these binges, so I am wondering if this is just from craving carbs as a result of the strict diet, or should I be concerned about a more serious eating disorder?

I know the easy answer is to just not eat at night and not give into the cravings, but can anyone suggest any ways of avoiding the cravings in the first place?

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njrusmc
Level 4

Join date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1118

I think an option would be to bastardize CT's program a little and have a few of your cheat-snacks during the day. Binging before bed will do much more damage than daily moderate snacking. Maybe add a half-serving of your snack of choice after each meal. This will perhaps give you perhaps 2 servings of snacks daily, spread throughout the day.

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debraD
Level 1

Join date: Jul 2008
Posts: 7317

Whenever I've had the problem it's been around carbs.

Blueberries and high fat greek yogurt do a good job and keeping me from devouring all the ice cream. Also a square or two of dark chocolate. Sweet and rich enough to feel like a treat but not so sweet and to drive you crazy for more.

I find if I'm determined to not have any more carbs that makes it harder to follow. But if I admit I'm going to have some and allow for some less detrimental ones, like fruit for example, then I can handle it better.

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ACTrain
Level 5

Join date: Oct 2004
Posts: 817

One way to avoid the binging is to keep the foods out of the house. If your craving ice cream at 11pm and you'd have to drive to the store to buy some, you are less likely to binge. There is nothing wrong with having something to eat at night just keep it to healthier snacks like nuts or fruits.

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-mc-
Level

Join date: Sep 2007
Posts: 194

or stop trying to be extreme.
consider picking up a book like Martha Beck's the four day win to build up some skills/habits and self-support around that process. she talks about binging and it's not totally about the food. Likewise susan roberts of tufts talks about our wiring for carbs - esp when we've been in denial. so beck would be a great help for these strategies for success building.

hope that helps

dr mc schraefel, phd cscs

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SmilingPolitely
Level 4

Join date: Aug 2009
Posts: 1499

ACTrain wrote:
One way to avoid the binging is to keep the foods out of the house. If your craving ice cream at 11pm and you'd have to drive to the store to buy some, you are less likely to binge. There is nothing wrong with having something to eat at night just keep it to healthier snacks like nuts or fruits.


I know this usually sounds like an easy fix for the problem, but i have noticed if I am craving something and don't have it in the house I will systematically go through everything that I do have in the hopes of satiating the desire. Therefore, instead of a small portion of ice cream I end up with a smorgasbord of less satisfying alternatives.

I agree with what Deb said about greek yogurt; awesome for late night cravings that stuff is. I sometimes crush up some nuts to mix with it as well. I have no idea why, but for me at least greek yogurt kills the craving. And for what its worth, I smoke pot and the yogurt even works on the munchies!

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AlisaV
Level

Join date: Apr 2009
Posts: 2655

I'm not by any means an expert in nutrition, but the first thing you want to check is if you're eating enough -- it's really common to go on a "diet", undershoot on calories because you feel ambitious, and then cheat because it's actually too little food for you.

I'll second the greek yogurt and nuts and fruit. Also cottage cheese, or beef jerky (jerky and raw vegetables are practically the only low-carb finger foods, and one of the inconveniences of a low-carb diet is that it doesn't involve many easy-to-eat snacks.)

But then again: maybe it isn't about food. What are you doing at night that has you so bored? Are you staying up too late? Could you substitute a fun activity for a midnight snack?

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zerocarbs
Level

Join date: Jun 2007
Posts: 5

Sometimes a slice of sprouted grain bread ( the kind with no flour) and egg whites can help!!
Unless your husband goes and gets Ben and Jerrys just because...: )

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lia67
Level

Join date: Nov 2010
Posts: 526

Dr_Steff wrote:
I've been working on building my physique for the last year, and have been following Christian's carb cycling program for a few weeks. I'm noticing some nice muscle development, which is great, but I'm having some issues with late-night eating. I eat really clean during the day, but I find myself eating late at night, not really because I am hungry, but just out of boredom.

Occasionally, I end up in an all-out binge, and I feel like I've just ruined my entire day's progress and need to work out twice as hard the next day to cancel out the binge. I end up eating lots of carbs when I go on these binges, so I am wondering if this is just from craving carbs as a result of the strict diet, or should I be concerned about a more serious eating disorder?
i had a similar problem .there aint no quick fix . i was craving carbs at night , sweet cereals (cheerios etc)and ice cream .
i tried everything .
in the end i just said f it and went on a month bulking phase and pigged out on what i craved after one month i could not stand the idea of eating that crap and have not touched for about a year .
its a long process but so was being strict then f ing up all the time .
all i know is it worked for me

sorry i posted it wrong .
i basically went on a month bulking phase and pigged out on all the things i was cravin sweet cereals like cheerios and ice cream .
after 1 month of that i couldnt touch the stuff and have not for about a year .
all i know is it worked for me .

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