What to Do After a Binge

It is natural to feel overly full, bloated, irritable gassy and even headache after binging on food. The effect is not just physical; you may even struggle with uncomfortable emotions that may include frustration, shame, regret, hopelessness, or anger. Do not bash yourself; things are not as bad as you might think. Everyone binges once in a while–some do it when they are hungry and others do it when they feel bored. You will not get obese overnight. Knowing things to do after a binge will make you feel normal, and that is what you will learn in the following sections.

What to Do After a Binge

You may feel bad about yourself after a binge, but you can take certain steps to shake that feeling. The following 12 tips will help relieve you from a binge.

1. Do Not Be Overly Critical

It is common to feel bad after a binge, especially if you have been counting calories for some time, but it is definitely not a crime to indulge. Understand that you are only human and there is no need to feel mad at yourself. Dwelling on it is only going to make matters worse. You have to forgive yourself and learn to move past the guilt.

2. Drink Plenty of Water

It may not seem wise to guzzle down water when you are already feeling bloated and super full, but you have to do it to feel better. Staying hydrated is important because it accelerates binge recovery by promoting digestion and prevents gas-induced bloat. It also helps improve metabolism. Be sure to drink a glass of water before you go to bed and drink another one the next morning. Continue drinking more water for the next two days to help flush out salt and toxins.

3. Take Some Sleep

Getting quality shut-eye is one thing about what to do after a binge. You need to sleep for at least 7 hours to get back on track. Studies show that you are likely to eat less if you get more sleep. Getting nine hours of sleep after a binge will make it easier for you to turn down carb-laden food the next day.

4. Eat More Fiber and Protein in the Morning

Your breakfast should include protein and fiber to minimize the effect of a binge. Many people feel more ravenous in the morning after having a big dinner. This happens because the levels of insulin go up after a big dinner, which is followed by a drop in your blood sugar level. This makes you feel hungry the next morning. A balanced breakfast with the right mix of carbs, protein, and fat will help satisfy your hunger and make digestion easy.

5. Stay Active

You may find it difficult to stay active after a binge because that bloated feeling makes you lazy. Exercising will help deliver oxygen to your digestive tract and make it easier for food to move through it. Jogging, walking, or another cardio exercise for half an hour will help immensely. Yoga is another great option because stretching and twisting a bit after a binge will get things moving and improve digestion.

6. Do Not Eat Hard-to-Digest Food

It is important to avoid anything that is hard-to-digest if you are experiencing post-binge digestive stress. You should not opt for dairy products, gluten, refined sugar, coffee, and carbonated beverages. It is also important to avoid acidic foods like pasta, fruit juice, chocolate, and fatty meats. Stick to vegetables, fruits, almonds, green teas, avocados, and lentils because they are more alkaline in nature and are less likely to upset your stomach.

7. Be Sure to Eat Clean Foods

Eat clean is another tip about what to do after a binge. While you do not need to go on a full-blown cleansing routine after a binge, it still makes sense to eat clean whole foods to feel fresh again. This will also help you get back in a positive frame of mind. You can enjoy a grilled salmon fillet with three cups of leafy greens and one cup of quinoa–add lemon dressing and olive oil to leafy greens for better taste.

8. Do Not Starve

Do not think that you have eaten a lot already so you should avoid eating anything for some time. Do not starve and be sure to eat something if you feel hungry between meals. If you skip your regular meals after a binge, you will feel tempted to overeat again. Try snacks loaded with protein to feel full–organic turkey slices and avocado, Greek yogurt with berries, and a Quest Bar are some good options.

9. Forget the Scale

Do not reach out for the scale after a binge; you are going to see a number higher than what you actually are. This is mainly due to more food sitting in your stomach. This can be misleading and make you feel stressed, so avoid doing it.

10. Do Not Keep Leftovers

This tempts you to eat more and increase your caloric intake. Many people do the same after holidays and end up dealing with that post-holiday bulge. You can portion the leftovers out and take to social events, care homes, homeless shelters, or give it to your neighbors.

11. Keep Healthy Food in the Refrigerator

Keeping fresh vegetables and fruits in your fridge will inspire you to eat healthy food. Consuming light meals after a binge will help. Try fruit and vegetable based snacks, meals, and juices. Avoid all sorts of sugars, alcohol, and processed foods.

12. Determine Your Goals

Knowing what to do after a binge also includes determining your goals after overindulging. Rewrite your goals again and push yourself to meet them. Set achievable goals to make you feel motivated. Review your old goals but do not delve too much in how overeating may have hurt them. Try a fresh start now!

Above all, you need to stay positive and motivated all the time. One way to do it is to be a part of a support group. You can have friends, family, spouse, or coworkers around you to feel motivated and get back on track with more ease. Repeating positive affirmations will also help improve your mood and give you the strength to get back on track.

When to See a Doctor

There is no need to see a doctor after one day of overeating. You may need to see a psychiatrist though if you cannot stop overeating. This may happen because of certain medications that increase your appetite or due to any psychological disorder, such as binge-eating disorder which causes symptoms such as eating without feeling hungry, eating large amounts of food in one go, feeling ashamed, feeling depressed, and rapid weight gain. See your doctor in this case to resolve the issue.

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