Have you read part 1 of this dessert series yet?? If not, check it out HERE!
Many people who follow rules about dessert tend to break the rule on accident and then decide to “go all in” and keep breaking the rule…this is bingeing.
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You tell yourself that you are not allowed to eat sugar. You successfully avoid all sweet confections for 5 days. On the 6th day, your mom brings home a chocolate cake to eat after dinner. You pass on taking a slice when it comes around to you. You leave the table, thinking and obsessing over how good that cake must taste. You go back to the kitchen a little while later with a fork. After one slice, your brain is in dopamine overload and wants it ALL. 10 slices later, you feel sick, ashamed, angry, sad, and promise to never do it again. No dessert, and this time you’re gonna make it past 5 days.
If not, AMAZING!
If yes, keep reading…
The way that I’ve found to be the most helpful with breaking down the desert bingeing cycle is to realize these two things:
1. No dessert is THAT special.
2. Dessert can be a part of your daily life.
Let’s start with the “specialness” factor.
When you encounter a situation where you have the opportunity to eat your favorite caramel fudge brownie, you’re gonna want a bite. When this situation turns into a manifestation of fear, anxiety, and lack…you binge.
If you believe that this brownie is so special, difficult to attain, and doesn’t come around that often, your brain will panic and want to eat it ALL, and NOW, because it’s not sure the next time you’ll get it. It’s too special. You’re in a lack mindset. Fear of not having enough is fueling your actions.
However, the truth is this: it’s just a brownie (delicious, for sure), but you will be able to have it again. You can eat a portion that feels satisfying and yummy and stop when you’re full. You believe in the abundance around you and know that the brownie is not going to disappear forever…you can even find a copycat recipe online and make it again tomorrow!
It’s not that special.
When you accept an abundance mindset (i.e. this isn’t the only time I will be enjoying this sweet, this dessert is beautiful and I am grateful for it, this is one component of my amazing day, a yummy dessert brings joy to my body, more of this will come my way soon) there is nothing to fear about missing out on eating “enough” of the dessert.
You may not realize how much importance, specialness, and POWER you’re giving to your dessert, but think about it in this example:
Sally is at a pregame, and someone brought Oreos! Yum! Sally hasn’t had Oreos in a long time, and she’s trying to do a sugar-free diet. She sees the Oreos and has an intense internal battle – should she eat one? but that’s “cheating”! can she keep up her will power and avoid the table with the Oreos? but they look soooo good!
Sally goes over and eats an Oreo – dopamineeee explosion in the brain! WE LOVE SUGAR!
She decides to say “f*ck it” and eats a couple more, and then a couple more, and then a couple more. Now, in this moment, Sally is in a LACK mindset. She’s thinking things like:
I already cheated so I may as well make it worth it
I don’t know the next time I’ll have Oreos (because I MUST be more strict with my sugar-free diet starting next week) so I better enjoy it while I can
I can’t believe I’m doing this to myself
Let’s back it up now…suppose Sally had no dessert rules or fears of sugar and sweets. She still loves Oreos, and she’s at the same pregame. She eats a couple, enjoys them, and moves on! A couple days later when someone offers her an Oreo, she takes that one and enjoys it too. In this moment, Sally has an ABUNDANCE mindset. She’s thinking things like:
Yum! I love Oreos! Since they sell them right down the street, maybe I can go get some later
This is delicious and my sweet tooth is satisfied
I’m full now and not thinking about the Oreos anymore
You see, when you recognize that the dessert isn’t THAT special, there won’t be a rush to eat it all, or anxiety about missing out on it. You will eat slower, enjoy and savor it, and eat until you’re satisfied and not past your fullness point.
Got it? FAB!
A few more tips for incorporating desserts in your daily life while still feeling amazing and on track with your health goals:
Serve yourself! It can be hard to stop eating your favorite ice cream when you’re going at the pint with a spoon…instead, scoop yourself a portion, put it in a bowl, and go sit down at the kitchen table. When you give yourself a proper serving, you can focus on the amount you have in front of you, and THEN go back for seconds if you still want more after your first portion.
Slow down! Have you ever inhaled a meal so fast that you barely even tasted the food? Yeah, not great. Dessert should bring you pleasure and enjoyment, so take the time to ENJOY it! Savor every bite, and try to slow down.
Make good choices! If you are lactose intolerant, it’s your responsibility to find yummy dairy free options that you’ll love. Sure, you may pop a lactaid pill or deal with the tummy pains every once in a while, but if you’re having dessert every day, you’ll want to make sure you’re eating something that makes you feel good. I love baking my sugar free chocolate chip banana bread, paleo brownies, or chocolate mug cake because I know they make me feel good! I’m also always down to try GF vegan baked goods wherever I go. I make the choice that’s right for me, and eat the “normal” stuff from time to time too!
Normalize it! Develop the belief that dessert is a part of your daily, healthy life. Once you fully accept and believe that truth, the anxiety about rules or restrictions will slowly subside. Your internal language and belief systems dictate your external reactions and reality, so you truly do have the power to ease away yours fears and anxieties by doing the inner brain work too! Write a new story for yourself, one that includes daily dessert, and embrace that new version of your healthy life.
Does this help? I want to know!!! If you’ve ever struggled with food fears, rules, restrictions, or anxiety (particularly around dessert) then I want to hear from you and chat about how these blog posts have helped you. DM me on Insta or shoot me a message via email. I can’t wait to hear about your revelations and ah-ha moments…happy dessert eating!