Friday, December 9, 2016

Shrouding — Disordered or Not?

March 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Body Image

Heather’s recent post, “Helpful Hint or Disordered Eating” at Hangry Pants really got me thinking …

As Heather notes in her post, “For some time we’ve debated food destruction – ruining your food with something like salt or hot sauce so that it is inedible. Jillian Michaels pours candle wax on her food (thanks for the link Julie) when she is full, and instructs Biggest Loser players to destroy desserts with salt.”

While I think Jillian’s solution is on the extreme side, it saddens me to admit it’s not something I couldn’t have imagined myself doing back in the day of peak disorderedness.

Sad but true.

Looking back, I see I developed some unhealthy habits that started out innocently enough in college. In our dining hall (which was all-you-can-eat and quite amazing, all things considered — and catered by Sodexho Marriott), my friends and I used to shroud our food when we were done eating. We’d laugh about it and joke about how we were “shrouding.”

We did this because surely no one would dare nibble off their plate if a dirty napkin was on it! And often, we’d over-eaten at TDR (our dining hall) and would leave in a TDR food coma … especially after “Late Night” — which we’d go to a few times a week, usually for unlimited FF fro-yo or cereal … (because everyone needs cereal and fro-yo at midnight ;))

Anyway, that behavior started in college, long before my actual food issues began. Over time, after I lost weight on WW, I got more disordered in my food behaviors — taking a bite of something and throwing it out, putting condiments on something to avoid finishing it, (cringing as I type this) chewing and spitting into napkins (then later the trash or a plastic bag …) And I have to say, though I no longer chew and spit (it’s been exactly a year now!!), I still will sometimes shroud or throw perfectly good food out.

This really saddens my husband, who comes from a developing country where food is a gift and not a given right; it’s something to be savored … not destroyed. It’s very hard for him to see me destroying food or throwing food away. Naturally, he very much agrees with Mark’s perspective and wishes I just would eat what is in front of me or not buy it if I can’t (in my own words) handle having said food around.

But like Heather admits, I, too tend to be an emotional eater (and I’m a compulsive buyer … ) and while I try to recognize how disturbing these behaviors are, I don’t always succeed in stopping them.

I really like what Heather had to say here: “I have a tendency to emotionally eat or overeat eat simply because something is so completely delicious, so I empathize with the food destroyer. Mark, however, does not get that, and my arguments (but Mark, what if you just can’t stop eating the cookies!) fell on deaf ears. But, the more I thought, the more unconvincing my arguments sounded even to myself. Then I realized: food is not an opponent; there should be no YOU v. FOOD. By destroying food you are saying that food is something to be beaten and defeated, but food should be enjoyed and savored.

There’s something ridiculously gratifying about going out to eat and NOT destroying my food; just eating for the sake of eating. It feels right; human.

Ultimately, destroying food gets us nowhere. It just puts power in the hands of an inanimate object, instead of in our own hands, where it belongs.

And when our heads are in the right place, I believe that decision-making process (to destroy/not destroy; buy/not buy; shroud/not shroud) will get easier and easier. I see it happening already. I destroy food/throw out food less and less as time goes on.

I really would love to get to the place where I’m truly living what she’s saying … but I’d be lying if I said I was there just yet. All I can do is give it my best, one day at a time. Eventually, I’ll get there. Because as I always say, I’m worth it. We’re worth it.

How about you? What do you think about these destroying-food behaviors? Do you do it/did you used to do it? Is Jillian’s advice a smart dieting hint or disordered eating in disguise? Or does it depend on who is receiving this advice?

Comments

43 Responses to “Shrouding — Disordered or Not?”
  1. Sarah says:

    I do this. Specifically I toss food all the time, but I don’t consider it disordered eating. I often don’t want ALL of what I have to purchase, the scone, the muffin, whatever. Portion sizes are huge. When possible I always order the small and even then still too much food comes. I’ve paid for it, it is my right to do with what I wish.

    That said, I know this bugs the crap out of my twin sister. She gets on my case about it all the time. Why buy it then she asks me. Why? Because I want some, but not all. I’m pretty happy that I can have what I want and toss the rest. I should note that I toss it after I eat it, not toss half first. If I could buy half a piece I would. Heck, I’d probably even pay more for it. Today I did something similar in fact. I wanted 6 donuts (this has happened to me before) and the lady behind the counter was all, it’s cheaper if you buy 9. That’s fine I said, I don’t want 9 I want 6. But they are cheaper, she said again. Yes, I know, I don’t want 9 donuts. Why did this have to be such a conversation, again.

    I think this advice can be taken too far, but for me, it’s been a helpful tool in maintaining my weight loss for years. I don’t give it a second thought.

    • lissa10279 says:

      Sarah, I think that’s just it … it can be taken too far to extremes if in the wrong “hands” so to speak.

      Like you, I will sometimes toss just because I want just a taste or don’t want the huge American portion of something — and I agree, it can be a helpful weight-maintenance tool …

      But I kinda think there’s a difference between needing to physically mutilate/destroy food simply so I don’t eat it … vs just chucking what I don’t need/want. One is disordered; the other … just being weight-conscious. (which I agree, would serve a lot of Americans well)

      • Sarah says:

        I see what you are saying. So to respond to your question in the post, I’m not sure it is such good advice. We need to learn to live with food. Destroying it as a way to keep yourself from it, that leads down a mental path that isn’t entirely healthy. There will be times when that isn’t possible or will raise some eyebrows, best to learn to live with it I think.

        This post has had me thinking for a couple of days. I’m excellent at ignoring treats my husband buys, because I think of them as his. We all play mental tricks, but sometimes they help you on your way to learning to live with food. But for me they are decided mental… with no acts of physical violence towards my food.

  2. Simone says:

    I also through out extra food to keep myself from picking at it. American food portions are often too big for my stomach, and I know I’ll be tempted to eat everything on my plate if I don’t throw some out. It’s definitely not about weight for me; it’s just a way of ensuring that I feel comfortable after the meal.

    The whole salting your dessert thing is a little weird, but how is it inherently disordered? This is a serious question. I’m open to the possibility that it might be, but I don’t see why it is. As long the person doing the dessert-wrecking is making a conscious choice (instead of responding to a compulsion), and as long as they are allowing themselves to eat enough food, I don’t really see what the problem is.

  3. Simone says:

    …and of course, serious typos, as always. Sorry guys.

  4. Danielle says:

    After years of hating food, hating my body, and in turn being consumed by food… All I want is to be at ease with feeding myself, and not want to self-destruct when faced with a plate full of food.

    For me- it is part of eating disorder behavior because it runs deep into food hate, and hate of myself… I cannot be trusted to be around food, food is the evil that made me so disgusting, if I only eat half of this then I will have reached this many calories, etc. etc.

    I wonder if food were not the enemy/satan if it would end up not being as big of a deal. Could we all sit down to a meal out to eat, and eat what we wanted until satisfaction was reached? Enjoy another’s company instead?

    I have been overwhelmed by food insanity… this is a part of the calorie counting, obsessing over yesterday’s “overage”… it sucks. I wish to not live like this ever again.

  5. sleepydumpling says:

    I used to do some of these things. I now recognise it as part of the disordered behaviour I was engaging in.

    I still do it sometimes. Though not as extreme as the candle wax… that just sounds batsh1t crazy to me.

    Nowdays I either throw it away if what’s left is inedible, or Tupperware the leftovers if it is. In a restaurant I’ll ask the wait staff to take my finished plate away. I’m full, I don’t need it, I don’t want any more so it doesn’t need to be there in front of me.

  6. love2eatinpa says:

    i think that we all need to do whatever we gotta do to get through. if destroying food is what you need to do to stop eating it at that moment in time, then it’s right for you.

    i don’t tink it’s a one-size-fits-all kind of thing.

    is it disordered? well, coming from the perspective of a recovering disordered eater, to me it is a coping mechanism. for people trying to lose or maintain their weight and destroying it is an effective strategy, then i say go for it.

    i wonder if jillian michaels does it just to show as an example or if she is still recovering from an eating disorder? hmm…

    • rita says:

      I remember her talking about this, and if I remember correctly she said it was that willpower is not a muscle. It doesn’t get stronger the more you use it, it just gets weaker. This response was to use the moment when the willpower was present and then not have to keep using it for the entire meal. I wonder about that last question too.

    • lissa10279 says:

      A year ago I might have agreed with you, but at this stage in my recovery journey … I have to disagree — I don’t think it’s right for anyone to destroy food. We might think it’s OK for us at the moment but really, it’s an unhealthy behavior … it’s a coping mechanism, yes … but that doesn’t make it right. It’s better, I think, to learn to deal with food and find that place where we can co-exist with it without drama surrounding it. I’m not 100% there myself — I’d be lying if I said I was — but I can’t agree that it’s OK for me (or anyone) to cope by mutilating food and thinking it’s OK… yet somehow tossing something after a few bites seems less disordered to me — even now. <> It’s all a learning curve.

  7. Nell says:

    I do some of those things. For example, I have the urge to bake in the middle of the night when I’m stressed, and I can’t bring myself to ruin what I make. Logical conclusion? My neighbors find brightly wrapped napkins full of various small cakes, muffins, breads… in front of their doors in the mornings. If I didn’t do that, I’d be eating all that I had made and some more. Strangely enough, that “I need to eat all this” feeling doesn’t come when I bake during the day, then I’m perfectly fine with taste-testing half a muffin.

    In restaurants, I ask for half portions, even here in Europe (which earns me really, really crazy looks)- I want to sample different dishes, and portions don’t allow for that. I throw away what I haven’t eaten the day after cooking. I make chocolate pudding with salt instead of sugar so I won’t like it (I usually make it from scratch, meaning creamcreamcream and chocolate shavings and sugar).

    I realize that some of this is disordered. I know that I’m still trying to get over the need to be something else. I also know that it’s quite the efficient cravings-killer.

    That’s not quite the intuitive eating thing to do, but it gets the job done. Someone forgot the off-switch for my chocolate cravings (I literally eat five 100g bars of most delicious Ritter Sports Alpenmilch chocolate if I allow myself to get them- Germany has permanently killed my stop-eating-chocolate-instinct!). I agree with love2eatinpa- if it helps, do it.

    (maybe while being aware of that not everyone will think of your behavior as sane)

  8. Rita says:

    I too see this as a coping strategy, but it is different for each person and each food relationship.

    Sometimes, I had a moment of sanity while binging, where I could stop, throw out, destroy, whatever I was eating and that gave me the time to stop and breathe and become present again. If I could do this I could stop.

    This was a bridge to be able to become present without destroying and ultimately work on not binging in the first place. I think the important part is knowing how you use this behavior and how it impacts your relationship with food and your body is the key.

    Great post!

  9. tombrokaw says:

    lol. Make smaller portions.

  10. mamaV says:

    Disordered eating. Period.

    This makes me sad, and upset that this behavior is justified in anyway. The goal is to trust yourself around food, learn to see food as fuel for your body–these practices are like killing the enemy.

    Plus, what does it accomplish, a momentarily control of your behavior? One dessert not completely eaten is some victory?

    Americans are out of control with food, we supersize everything, and then chuck the extra in the garbage instead of saving it for a meal the next day?

    The fact that Jillian Michaels is encouraging this proves a show like Biggest Loser is not in anyway a “reality show” that should be regarded as positive, healthy program to follow.

    Girls, I am not judging any of you who engage in this, since the majority appear to understand its not a healthy behavior, I’m just expressing what this sounds like from a recovered ED sufferer.
    Love,
    MV

    • sleepydumpling says:

      MamaV I am SO glad you’ve spoken up. As I read each ladies post talking about how they use these techniques, my heart got heavier and heavier, and all kinds of guilt triggers and stuff went off in my head.

      Please don’t take this as harsh as I don’t intend it that way, but some of the comments on this thread really do sound like those I’ve seen on Pro-Ana boards (which I will admit I lurked in during my most disordered days).

      Normal eating isn’t all these control behaviours and sabotaging yourself in the way of food. Normal eating is learning to find the triggers to stop eating when you’re satisfied, and eat when and what you need to, not what your emotions are telling you to do.

      It’s not just Americans that are out of control. We Aussies have the same issues around food and body image. I’ve lived it and am still living it, it’s really hard to keep going forward when there are so many pressures and triggers in life around you.

      Like MamaV, this is not judgement, I know what it feels like and how the thinking works, but as someone in recovery, certainly not fully recovered, I can see it from the outside looking back in now and see just how screwy and damaging it is.

      I wish I knew the answers to help each of you tip out of these behaviours, into normal eating and a healthy relationship with food and your bodies, but all I can do is offer support and the experience gained from being someone who has been there but slowly but surely raising out of it.

      Sleepydumpling

    • Candice says:

      Unfortunately, I have to strongly disagree. What if you don’t want to eat the food another time? Or what if it’s a muffin or doughnut you treated yourself to but only want 1/4 or 1/2 of? Should I really force myself to save half a doughnut and eat it the next day? I’d rather take the three bites I want and discard the rest. It’s not my fault that the doughnut is 3x bigger than it should be as a “treat.”

      In addition, for those of us that struggle with overeating, I feel we need to take advantage of the moments where we feel strong enough to stop ourselves and say, “Okay, I’m done eating. This is going in the garbage.” That is NOT disordered or restricting. That is exercising control, learning to recognize the moments when you’re full. To me, this is a component of intuitive eating.

      Personally, when I’m done eating, I can’t stand to look at the food in front of me anymore (when I feel full, seeing/smelling the remaining food makes me feel overfull) so I often cover it or (if I’m home) throw out or pack up the leftovers. And I don’t think twice about this behavior or in any way feel bad about it.

      I think it’s not just black and white, too. Putting something in the garbage should be enough. One shouldn’t have to salt or ketchup food in the garbage to prevent oneself from taking it out of the garbage and eating it. That is clearly someone who is not in a healthy eating place, but hopefully it’s just a very quick stop on a journey to healthy eating.

      • lissa10279 says:

        Candice, that’s just it — shrouding or putting ketchup on it to NOT eat it –vs being satisfied and throwing something out b/c you’re done — are two different stories. The latter is healthy behavior; the former disordered … though I guess it’s all subjective.

      • mamaV says:

        Hi Candice: I understand your perspective, I do.

        However, even the thought of just throwing away food, with no awareness of the cost of it or the need for it, bothers me. Perhaps this is partially a mom’s perspective, because with kids a lot can go to waste and you need to minimize it or you will go broke.

        The other side is what Melissa brought up — American’s total and complete disregard and unawareness of poor, starving people in other countries. Like it or not — they don’t have eating disorders because its not an option. What does that say about us

        We look like a bunch of selfish slobs, and lately it has been grating on me. How many people fill up their plates at buffets, take a bite, and just chuck it? Go to Vegas to the Bellagio, the food is amazing, but to sit and watch the total gluttony of people is sad. Mounts of uneaten food, desserts taken only to eat a bite. Its just a sad state of affairs.

        I do understand that a person suffering with an eating disorder, one needs to focus on themselves, and utilize all techniques to help recover, so I don’t say these things to make anyone feel guilty. I am just saying that from a recovered perspective, one that I hope everyone will achieve someday.

        • Nikki says:

          But throwing away food in America doesn’t help hungry people in (fill-in-the-blank developing nation).

          Reminds me of this old routine by Allan Sherman:

          • Nikki says:

            Oh my, I didn’t know the video would appear in the blog comments like that. If the blog mods find the video offensive feel free to remove, I find it one of the funniest videos of all time, but not everyone shares my sense of humor. 🙂

      • living400lbs says:

        If it’s something you’d have to carry with you all day, or that won’t keep, then yes, throw it out.

        But if it’s easy, I’ll put it in a ziploc and/or the fridge for later. “Later” may be lunch the next day, or days from now.

  11. sleepydumpling says:

    I am not referring to throwing things away if you don’t want them, that’s not what “shrouding” is.

    I mean destroying food with salt, sugar, candle wax, wrapping it up, chewing it and spitting it into napkins, destroying it in any way that isn’t just throwing it away. THAT is disordered.

    Tossing out leftovers or things that won’t keep is normal. Engaging in behaviours that are controlling or destructive around food (which is essentially what I believe shrouding is) is disordered.

  12. Lori says:

    Personally, I hate throwing away perfectly edible food. Yes, restaurants have huge portions. I think it’s awesome, because it means that I’ll usually end up getting 2-3 meals out of one order. And, given how expensive it is to eat out, that’s a good thing in my mind. I can rarely eat more than 1/2 of what I’m served in a restaurant–and I’ve got a hearty appetite, so obviously the portions are gigantic–and then I bring home the rest and can usually get a lunch or two out of it (if I manage to get to the leftovers before my husband does!). I’m coming at this from the perspective of somebody who has never had an eating disorder, so the idea of just planning to pack up half your meal may be easier said than done for some people.

    But I’m a leftover eater–I don’t really like cold lunches, so I like having leftovers on hand to warm up for lunch–so I routinely make more servings for dinner than I think we’ll eat, so that I’ll have stuff to save. If we truly hate a recipe I’ve tried, I’ll toss it, but as long as somebody in the house will eat it, I just put it in the fridge. Of course, I also have a 6’5″ husband with a huge appetite who will eat anything and everything–he’s been known to eat what I have left on my plate if I get up to use the bathroom during dinner, claiming he thought I was done–so it’s not like if I only eat half a doughnut, the other half is going to go stale on my counter. If I lived alone, or had a husband who was not a human garbage disposal ;), I might feel differently.

    In general, though, food waste is something that concerns me. I hate throwing away food when people around the world are starving, even though I realize it’s not like I could get my leftovers to them. But I do try to plan our grocery shopping so that we won’t have a bunch of stuff that goes to waste at the end of the week. I actually need to clean out my fridge today, and I know I’m going to be pretty appalled at how much stuff we have in there that needs to be tossed.

    To me, the idea of throwing away perfectly edible food seems wasteful and perhaps irresponsible, but not necessarily disordered. On the other hand, destroying food by pouring wax or salt on it seems disordered. I know it would never occur to me to do that, and I tend to think it’s one of those things that wouldn’t occur to most people who didn’t have an eating disorder or disordered eating habits, although I could be wrong about that.

    • living400lbs says:

      I’ll usually end up getting 2-3 meals out of one order. And, given how expensive it is to eat out, that’s a good thing in my mind.

      This. If it won’t keep I often won’t order it, because why waste the money?

      I have no illusions that taking home leftovers will help the starving children anywhere. But I do feel that if I’m not going to eat it I should pay someone to cook it for me.

  13. Jan says:

    When I was eight years old my mother would put me on strict diets because I was too fat. I would steal food out of the fridge and was punished if I was caught by being sent to bed without any supper. I would creep downstairs in the early hours of the morning and steal food from the bin. Now the only way I can stop myself eating the left overs when they are thrown away by other people (I never leave anything) is to cover them with a squirt of washing up liquid before they are disposed of. Yes it is disordered and yes it is sick but it is a way of coping with my bad feelings. I would rather shroud food than eat it in such an awful way.

  14. sleepydumpling says:

    Can I just share something – the best thing I ever did with regards to getting myself into a recovery process with eating disorders is to get counselling/therapy.

    I know not everyone has it available to them, and I know regular doctors aren’t exactly helpful in many cases, but if you can, if there is any way you can find a professional to help you through this, please utilise it. It will literally change your life for the better.

    My psychologist has been instrumental in me going from a sufferer of an eating disorder to someone who is in recovery from an eating disorder. If nothing else, working through all those screwed up food and body messages from my past with a professional has been one of the biggest helps I have had in this whole shermozzle.

    If you are in Australia, a GP can get you six subsidised sessions with a psychologist/psychiatrist where you are refunded two thirds of the cost by Medicare. Definitely ask about it.

    If anyone has any tips or information on how to get help in the other countries, please share them.

  15. Shhhh says:

    Huh… I didn’t realize that “shrouding” would be considered a bad thing. I feel I’m accomplishing something when I destroy the leftover food on my plate. It makes me feel that I have taken control away from the food.

    Am I wrong? Why?

  16. Kiersten says:

    Shrouding is definitely a disordered eating behavior. I have never done this myself, but I have heard that lots of other people do it. (It surprises me that I never did this, seeing as I had so many other disordered food habits) I’ve heard of people shrouding because of their eating disorders and I’ve heard it suggested to people who are on a diet. I feel bad for anyone who does this because they are on a diet, because behavior like this is only setting them up with some unhealthy food habits.

    No one should ever feel that they have to “beat” the food on their plate. Food should not have that much control over us. WE are the ones in control.

  17. linda says:

    Yes, disordered. How is that form of behaviour ever going to heal your relationship with food or your relationship with yourself for that matter? Even if it’s a coping mechanism for binge eating it simply keeps you in an evil pattern where you see yourself as either being out of control (binging) or in control (restricting). What about learning to trust yourself around food, have faith in your ability to take care of your needs and nourish yourself body and soul. If you’re shrouding you’re basically saying that food is evil and you cannot be trusted around it. How can you ever come to a place of self acceptance if your actions are basically reinforcing the idea that you’re some wild animal that needs to be contained? We can all agree that binging is a form of self-destruction but how is this any better? You cannot fight negative thoughts about yourself and food with more negative thoughts. You need to break the cycle. I’m with Sleepydumpling a lot of people could benefit from therapy. The sad thing about dieting in our culture is that it normalizes disordered eating.

  18. Catgal says:

    The food is inatimate and never had any control at all. We are always the ones in control. Our different issues and disorders or disordered eating are the things that make us do stuff like shrouding. I have a friend that does it, because if she doesn’t, and the plate sits there, she will keep eating. I have occasionally stopped eating a meal at a restaurant, by declaring I’m done and thowing my napkin on the plate. I don’t use it like a sheet to cover the food, but more as a signal to the wait or bus staff that I am done. Putting your fork and knife in the midde of the plate is a cue that you are done as well.

  19. Pauline says:

    I’m just amazed. I didn’t know that Jillian Micheals did that and am not am not sure how to react. I was bulimic for a long time, only after discovering I didn’t have the willpower to be anorexic. So I felt like a failed anorexic, if that makes any sense. But I never shrouded. I used other coping mechanisms for getting beyond the disorder…but when you really top to think about it, a lot of it is just substituting one behavior for another. I took up smoking to “give me time to think and let my food settle” so I would purge. Did I beat the disorder? Sure…but just by the teensiest bit because the thoughts were still there.
    And that’s the ticket-if you throw away your food or push your plate away because you are done and you are done thinking about it, then that’s all fine and dandy and normal thinking.
    If you’re sitting there playing mind games with yourself about how to camouflage the food, destroy the food, or chain smoking so you don’t throw it up, well, then that’s a totally different story.
    Candle wax? I’m just sitting here shaking my head wondering how this kind of thinking is healthy to pass on to others.

  20. Tempe Wick says:

    I’m a compulsive overeater, and from what I have read and heard, some people’s disorder is so strong, they will eat food out of the trash. Let’s say cake is one of your binge foods. Someone brings over a cake. You know you can’t eat just a piece, that isn’t how your mind works. You throw it in the trash, but keep thinking about it and later dig it out and eat it.

    When you’re in recovery, you make an effort not to have your binge foods around. If by some circumstance they are, you put them in the trash and put dishwashing liquid on them to make them inedible.

    I guess I’ve heard these stories often enough, that the idea of shrouding doesn’t seem like a negative behavior. In my world, it’s actually a positive one–you’re taking steps to keep from binging.

    • sleepydumpling says:

      Positive steps would be overcoming the compulsion, not engaging in more disordered behavior to compensate.

      Recovery is all about removing the need to control your environment at all times, and to beat the compulsions that eating disorders hold over us.

      The need to sabotage things to prevent yourself from eating it is disordered. “Normal” eaters don’t need to do that. They can leave it sitting in the fridge and eat some tomorrow, or put it in the bin and leave it there.

      This is what recovery is about – beating all those compulsions and disordered behaviours.

      • wriggles says:

        I agree, if you have an eating compulsion, you need to try and take the pressure off yourself overall, hopefully that will be part of getting your nervous system to adjust your appetite and hunger down.

        Trying to adjust it through food is just trying to correct after the fact.

        It keeps you tethered to your disorder, rather than correcting it.

  21. Tempe Wick says:

    “The need to sabotage things to prevent yourself from eating it is disordered. “Normal” eaters don’t need to do that. They can leave it sitting in the fridge and eat some tomorrow, or put it in the bin and leave it there.”

    That’s just it–we aren’t normal eaters. If we could leave it sitting in the fridge we would. Rather than being disordered behavior, I think ruining food so you can’t eat it is sort of a last ditch, do whatever you can coping mechanism. Ideally, you don’t keep your binge foods in the house. But if you can’t resist the compulsion at the point of sale (supermarket, fast food place, etc.) it doesn’t have to be the beginning of a binge. You can make the food inedible and not go down that path.

    • sleepydumpling says:

      But that’s the goal isn’t it? To BECOME normal eaters? That’s certainly what I am working towards. Those of us with ED’s have to move from disordered eating to normal eating. If we just say “Nope, we’re not normal eaters and never will be.” then that’s right, it’s never going to change.

      My philosophy is “I am a disordered eater. I have been a disordered eater. I am learning to become a normal eater.”

      I think Wriggles hit the nail on the head with:

      “It keeps you tethered to your disorder, rather than correcting it.”

  22. cggirl says:

    I tried to reply to this awhile ago but I think my browser froze…
    Anyway I wanted to say that some here think it depends on whether you’re compulsively doing this or not. But I say, the compulsion is there – the compulsion to eat the food if you don’t destroy it. So this behavior is, to me, evidence of disordered eating, and I’m with mamaV on how sad it is that this is justified.

    This is random but – I remember watching a reality show (silly, I know) where a woman (who’s daughter is beautiful and a bit full figured compared to our cultural “ideal”) is exhibiting this behavior, dumping salt on her fries and saying she does this a lot. This same idiot woman later is getting ready for a big event, and says she feels faint, has low blood sugar, has not eaten anything all day, and is asking for someone to get her a diet coke. She says “I need a diet coke, my blood sugar is low”. DIET COKE HAS NO SUGAR. People are so ignorant they don’t realize that, and they don’t realize having low blood sugar and feeling faint means you need SUGAR NOW. And if you want to be super healthy, and have access to some fruit, you can just have that! But if you eat a piece of chocolate, that still sounds much better than doing nothing or drinking diet coke and swooning everywhere.
    Sorry for the random rant.

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