Above all, focus on your health -- not "being thin." And understand that while part of the problem is emotional, it's not all in your head. Chemical food cravings can be as strong as other chemical addictions. The sedative affect we get can literally intoxicate us. By stabilizing my blood sugar and raising my serotonin levels naturally with supplements, I was able to lose some of my chemical addiction to food. If you are in treatment for depression, consult your doctor, but keep in mind that you are not limited to prescription drugs when it comes to raising serotonin.
Even if you continue to binge, pledge to eat only real food. Real chocolate and real butter instead of cheap packaged, hydrogenated stuff is actually a big step up. If you develop a list of unrefined foods you like and binge on them instead of pure refined sugar or super high-carb foods, you will reduce the damage from your binges and dramatically reduce your cravings. Forget fat free food. Upgrade your standard food and beverages painlessly and strategically from dawn to dusk. My book, The Truth About Beauty (LINK www.informedbeauty.com) offers dozens of strategic upgrades for every palate. Become a regular at the health food store. Invest in a quality, advanced, broad spectrum multi nutrient supplement regimen (several of the best are listed in the Resource Guide). This will help address cravings. As you look further into your own health issues, you’ll move beyond the weight motivator and focus on correcting issues like blood sugar, hormonal imbalances, thyroid issues, sleep issues and depression. These can all directly affect our weight.
The emotional work is to know yourself more and more, and determine the origin -- the answer to the whole "chicken or egg" phenomena that makes us become obsessed in the first place. Did you grow up with an inherent sense of shame (a family legacy), does it have it’s origins in a painful incident (often sexual), or did you develop it when you first gained weight and reinforce it by bingeing, which compounds things and often obscures the true source of the shame. Are you a perfectionist. A "please-everyone-but-yourself" type person with deep-seeded resentment? Did one of your parents "mess you up." One of mine did, but it wasn't her fault. She couldn't help it. I know that now. What ever it is, you need to "get there" through journal writing, books, therapy and perhaps directly addressing issues with those who have projected or reinforced your negative patterns and self-talk. Don’t wait for apologies or for anyone else to change your situation, though.
If you've got kids, it's hard to take enough time for yourself to figure these things out. I suggest finding books that strike a chord of truth with your family/relationship issues and reading them once the kids are asleep. Look to passages that validate your feelings or bring them to the surface. Turn the light out after particularly good passages after you've written it in your diary.
The last issue as I said, is intellectual. It's about getting objectively informed about what you put on and in your body, so you can begin to live with vigilant self- respect. Act as your own advocate -- your own ideal parent. Refuse toxic products, food and even treatment from others. Just say no. Once you begin to treat yourself with respect it’s hard to stop evolving. One self-respecting act tends to lead to another, and eventually your tolerance for putting up self-abuse may ware thin. If you are making painless, strategic upgrades in all areas of your life, you are weakening the hold of your vice and setting the stage for real freedom.