7 ways to deal with binge eating during festivals

Diwali season means binge eating for most of us, but it can really cause a ton of health issues. Here’s how you can stop yourself from going overboard!

Come Diwali, we all enter the festive mode. Card parties, late nights, and lots of food and drinks make an appearance in our lives! Of course, enjoying those barfis and ladoos, as well as samosas is a given, but sometimes, we tend to go overboard and that can wreak havoc on our health. It is also known as ‘binge eating’, because you eat something in large quantities.

But why does binge eating really happen, and are there any ways to tackle it? Parul Malhotra Bahl, Nutritionist and Certified Diabetes Educator, and Founder at Diet Expression shares his perspective with HealthShots.

binge eating
Stop feeling tempted with sweet and salty delights during the festive season. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Why does binge eating happen during the festive season?

“People often overeat on occasions or festivals, but people who binge eat regularly might have an eating disorder, which must be given medical attention.

During festivities, people binge eat due to their social obligations, and/or due to their emotional connection with food. But many also binge due to additional underlying factors like stress, anxiety, extreme dieting or even depression, she adds.

But what are some consequences of binge eating, be it during the festive season or otherwise? Bahl explains, “Binge eating at any point in time will leave you with unwanted discomfort, as it leads to indigestion causing acid reflux and gastric issues. It can even lead to hormonal imbalance, because the body ends up working more, in order to metabolize excess food. This results in increased secretion of hormones to maintain balance. Binge eating can also disturb your sleep pattern, and further affect your hormones and metabolism.”

Also Read: Feeling guilty about binge eating? Here are 4 damage-control tips to get you back on track

binge eating
It’s your own stomach, after all! Avoid the binge eating if you can. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Are there any ways to control binge eating?

Absolutely, yes! These simple tips recommended by Bahl can really help you in the long run:

  1. Eat mindfully: Watch what you are eating. Try and pick healthier options like dry fruits over mithais, roasted snacks over fried foods, lemon water over cold drinks etc.
  2. Portion your meals: Pick a small plate to eat and have smaller meal portions.
  3. Eating slowly will help big time: The body takes time to respond to getting full, so eating slowly will give time to your stomach to respond correctly.
  4. Listen to your body for when to STOP
  5. Learn to politely say NO to social pressure: This is important, especially when it comes to drinks. A smart way to is to keep one glass of drink in your hand and sipping on it through the night. Seeing a drink in your hand, no one would ask you for more.
  6. Eat small and frequent meals throughout the day, so that your stomach is full and you don’t hog on food later at the party or function.
  7. Don’t miss your workouts or walks: Exercise will ensure your body’s metabolism and sleep pattern stays on track.

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