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Weight Loss
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Can't stop eating when I start. How do you stop

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I am new to CC. I can't seem to stop eating once I start. Any suggestions? I try to eat around 1300 calories a day and I ended up eating 2000 calories yesterday! How did some of you break the cycle?
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When I feel like this...I take out what I plan to eat and put the rest of the food away.  If you leave it out in the open (ie cookies) you'll always want more...well at least i do.

kind of out of sight out of mine...
I was able to shrink my stomach some by breaking up my calories over several small meals. After eating, I would wait 20 minutes, at least, to give myself time to feel full.

Then I would drink water, reminding myself I would be eating again soon. Willpower in little doses, you know?
Before I eat anything, I try to drink a full glass of water. Then I make sure that I halve all of my portions and put the half that I *WILL NOT BE EATING* ( I make sure to tell myself that! :) ) away, like in the fridge all wrapped up.

When I get *the munchies*, I really have to try and figure out if I'm actually hungry or just bored, or maybe even thirsty! That's why I drink a glass of water. Usually that's really the signal my body was trying to send and then I get the hell away from the kitchen! (Or the pantry, or the grocery store, or the lunch room where there's always goodies at work!).

The thing is to make sure you're prepared BEFORE you put food in your mouth. 'Cause you're right, once you starting chowing, it's hard to stop!
I am so with you on that.  Once I start nyaaming, I just can't stop.  One night I had some friends over for a few drinks and after they left I decided to have a granola bar as a snack.  Well, I ended up having four.  It totally blew my healthy dinner away. 

Also, remember that you're probably going to be annoyed with yourself once it is over.  (That never stops me, of course...)
I agree. You have to make sure you are really hungry first. Then you have to set a limit, like 2 cookies, and eat them. Then, if you are still feeling hungry, tell yourself to wait 20 or whatever minutes and ask again...
Some suggestions...

Drink a glass of water before you eat.  Measure out servings.  Pre-plan all your meals.  Fix your plate with everything you plan to eat then put everything else away.  Don't leave pots and pans on the stove.  I sometimes clean the kitchen before eating.  Don't eat straight from the bag, box, etc.  I have printed and taped motivational sayings to my pantry and refrigerator doors.  If your still hungry after a meal, drink another glass of water and wait 10 minutes.  Sometimes the full sensation takes a little while to kick in.

You'll probably get many more ideas from others.  This is just what came to mind fairly quickly.
I also found myself eating less when it takes time to prepare my meal. If it's already made, I just don't think about it and eat to much. If I have to cut vegetables, boil water, etc... I have time to think about how much I'm hungry and how much would be a portion.
I have had the same problem in the past. Now I put everything I am going to eat for the day (besides dinner) in my lunch box. I only eat out of the lunch box. Hope this helps.

seems to be a good idea. I really can't keep treats in the house. It's worse when my roommate brings home stuff and offers me some
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You have to play with your brain becuase it is the brain that is controlling everything. When you have eaten half your food (the amount you are supposed to eat) - take one minute break. Stop eating for one minute, this is enough time to signal your brain whether you stomach is full or not. If you still feel like eating, eat quarter more and do the same thing. Most likely, you won't feel like eating. This has worked for me wonderfully.

another thing that you can do is to eat a lot of fiber throughout the day. This keeps the stomach full becuase whe the fiber goes in your stomach, it expands.

High fiber breads and Metamucill is the way to go. If like green veges, then that is probably is the best.

I am from Canada and I pick up a High Fiber Pita bread from Loblaws. It is 20 grams of carbs in which 10 grams is fiber. I eat two three of these pitas to get at least 20gm in my system everyday.

All the best.
thank you for your tip. =)
Hi Jasmin,

I've found some foods seem to tigger a desire for me to gorge myself, so i am working very hard to stay away from them. Sugary foods- like cake and ice cream seem to make me want to eat a lot of them, and then i'll want something salty- like fried chicken! White rice makes me wild! I can eat like 5 bowls of it- with gravy and chicken of course. so I've found other foods dont ignite this response- like brown rice, chicken breast w/ stir fried veggies, eggs, soy burgers- seems i eat enough to be full- then thats it- not sneeking back for more. and the more I eat this stuff- the less I crave sweets. there may even be some scientific basis to this- ala the glycemic index stuff. whatever the case is- seems to work for me.
Not sure if it starts with something like a chocolate craving.  If
it does the easiest way to cure those is to eat a pickle (only around 5
calories).  Something about the vinegary taste instantly kills
your craving :-)
I know exactly how you feel!  I have a history of binge eating and it is worse when I am hungry.  If I have the traditional "American Dinner Plate" I feel obligated to eat it all, even if I notice I have started to feel full, or it is yummy and I just. want. more.

My husband and I (well, me more than him but  he is eating "diet" for support) are trying to change how we eat and lose weight.  We started following the eating plan of another girl (6 meals - really meals and snacks) but I very quickly found out that it was not going to work for me unless I did the other part of her plan: one mass cooking day and prepack all the meals. She works crazy hours so she packs hers for time management but for me it really helps my binging. 

I grill all of our chicken and boil up the potatoes or rice for the week.  I put the chicken (half breast) and carb (small potato) in the square tupperware and then dump a healthy cup of frozen veggies on the side.  I stack them all in the fridge and just pull one out when I am ready to eat. For flavor sometimes I use low fat plain yougurt on the potatoes (like thin sour cream but I still get yogurt perks), lemon juice on veggies, or curry powder on chicken, whatever I feel like for the day. I have found that on the days that I didn't have one made or didn't have one with me - look out - I will eat anything that is "ready to eat".  

If I have already made my lunch, I have controlled my portion size before I got to the point of hungry and tried to decide what to eat then.  What is in the container is what I eat.  If I still THINK I am hungry, I make sure to get a glass of water and wait at least five minutes.  Usually the water will make everything settle and I realize - holy crap am I full!

For dinner, the chicken is already cooked and we just nuke some veggies and make a salad.  Sometimes I even cut all the salad veggies up at the beginning of the week too.   I really hope that helps a little.  Trust me, I know how hard it is to stop once you start.   

It might sound boring to eat the same thing every day for a week, but I am not in it for the flavor.  I am on a mission! 
I still struggle with that at times. a few things that have helped me:

Use a smaller plate, the average American dinner plate is about 50% larger than neccessary.

Measure everything until you get used to what a healthy portion size really is (ie half a cup of mac and cheese not the whole box, or even half of it, for example).

Always drink a large glass of water with every meal, unlike other beverages it actaully fills you up some what. If not water than skim milk. Jucies are okay on occassion but even though they are healthier than soda they are still largely sugar and can mess with your insulin.

Always make sure the bulk of your plate at meal time is fruits, veggies and grains. When I eat lunch at work I almost always have some kind of dark leafy green salad before my main coarse (no iceberg lettuce, but any greens with high nutrient content will work). 

Make sure your grains are whole grains they fill you up and are slow to digest keeping your blood sugar in check .

If you find yourself really craving something. stop to think about how hungry you really are physically. Rate it from o to 10, with 0 being so hungry the furniture is startint to look tastey and 10 being so full that you are ready to explode (think Turkey day dinner). If you aren't at least a 5 or less go do something else. It will pass. Go for a walk, have a cup of tea, blog in yiour joiurnal, work on your hobby anything that isn't food related.

Do some soul searching. Do your crave certain foods at certain times, or during certain moods? Do you associate certain foods with certain events (for example almost everyone associates popcorn and movies.) Do certain foods bring back certain memories (for example chocolate chip cookies remind you of happy childhood memories, or lasagna remind you of your gramma's kitechen). What is it you really want when you crave these foods. How do they affect your mood? Do they temporaily chase the bad feelings away, give you a lift?  What would happen if you didn' t give in to the craving? How would you feel if you didn't eat the food?

Don't buy or bring home the foods you know are hardest to resist. Its a lot easier to restist it once at the store than have it calling your name from the refrigerator all night.

Make sure you are eating balanced meals so yoiu are getting your nutrients, this includes healthy snacks to keep your blood sugar steady.

Remeber we are here for you, if you need a buddy. If you have a friend you can talk to on the phone or in person even better. If it works for AA, it can work for a lot of other things.

When you are done eating make sure all food is put away and the dishes washed. A clcean kitchen is less inviting to eat than one that still screams come and eat. Also the more work you have to do to eat something, the more you will have to be conscous of what you are doing and think about it.

When you do eat, make sure you set a place and sit at the table, mindless eating in fromt of the tv or computer encourages over eating. If you sit at the table (turn on slow music if you want) and pay attention to what you are eating you will probably eat less.  Be conscious of what your are eating.

Make sure you get plenty of water to drink all day.  Brothy soups are also great for filling up, with very little calories.

Over time your tastes will change and your body will get used to functioning on much less food. But not over night.

Think of calories as a budget, much like you do with our money. YOu can't afford everythign you want, and certain bills have to be paid. You have to have certain foods in your diet for the nutrients to be healthy, but you stil have some wiggle room for pleasure. However just like if you spend all your money on new clothes there is nothing left for electricity, if you waste all your calories on one meal, you won't have anything left for the enxt.

Make sure your goals are reasonable, and that your caloriie allotment isn't so low as to leave you starving at bed time.  The best weiight loss programs recommend one or two pounds a week as your diet isn't a temporary program but  a change in lifestule that you need to be able to live with for the rest of oyour life.

Don't try to make too many changes at once. Our bodies don't like big suprrises. Make little changes gradually. Theyu will add up.

Don't beat your self up, if you have a set back. Like all of us you are human. Humans goof up, and make mistakes and bad choices. Its part of the package. Just get back on ther horse and keep riding.

Tell yourself you deserve better, you are a valuable human being and deserve to treat yourself well, so that you can be healthy and live a long time, and have a good quality of life. 

REmember you CAN do it.

Whoa.. didn't mrean to write a book.. sheesh I'm talky tonight.
i plan what i'm going to eat ahead of time and get my stomach ready for that... i also put away the food once i eat it so i won't eat more than i really need...
Gum has recently helped me a lot. (I'm currently chewing some as I write this. :) ) I've used Trident gum. The flavor lasts for a really long time and there's less than 5 calories in each little stick. If you have a craving for something, just pop it in your mouth and enjoy!

Another thing I do is to dance with my stuffed plush doll! I know, you're thinking 'what'? But it has helped me out and for me, when I notice I get into a craving feeling, it's usually because I'm bored and have nothing to do. So pump up the volume on some of your favorite songs and you'll forget ever having a craving and also burning calories too! ( I recommend a catchy song. Something that'll you'll actually dance to.)
I chew gum a lot. Also brush your teeth when you feel a craving, i usually dont like to eat right after I brush my teeth. Try keep yourself busy, always!
wow, quite a few great tips from everyone here! I am really glad I found this site. I managed to have 1400 calories yesterday, compared to my 2000 on friday,

thanks again guys!

That  tooth brushing technique really works!  I heard it hear on CC, and now I implement it!

In the evening, when I am craving those late night snacks, I just run upstairs and brush my teeth.  Then I hope into bed and start reading my book or watching TV.  This always works.  And then I congratulate myself for beating the cravings!

*Important to congratulate yourself after you beat the craving*
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