Why A Binge is so Detrimental

Binge eating is something that I struggle with, although not as much anymore since I’m doing intermittent fasting. But this ugly habit is something that I always need to keep in check.

I used to think that a small binge (say eating an extra 1,000 calories a day) on occasion wasn’t a big deal. But when my weight remained the same for so long, I had to take a look at what the problem was. 

When I looked at the true effects that binge eating had on my calorie counts, it became clear how detrimental even one small binge is. Let’s take a look.

Suppose you can maintain on 2,000 calories a day, but eat 3,000 one day. To get back on track you would have to eat 1,000 calories the next day to balance things out. But that rarely happens. For me, eating 1,500 can be a struggle. And I’d have to do that for the following 2 days – and that’s just to maintain, not to lose.

When we’re limiting ourselves to 1,500 calories a day, we expect to lose weight. But if we’re “balancing out a binge” we won’t lose anything. And that’s discouraging.

And let’s also consider how many calories we really consume when we have a binge day. 1,000 may be a very low estimate. Consider the fact that a medium Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Blizzard has 1,130 calories (that’s a medium, not a large). If you’ve eaten a little more that day for lunch, a few extra snacks in the afternoon and then ended your day with that DQ treat, you may be as much as 2,000 or 2,500 calories over your normal count that day. (I’ve been there and done that!)

Then the math would be much worse. You’d have to “diet” all week just to maintain your current weight. And that’s no fun.

So now I’m training myself to have a mini Blizzard instead of a medium one. Allowing myself that indulgence helps me not feel deprived. And others must feel the same way too. I came across this article from Eat This Not That. It turns out that DQ has some reasonable options.

Regardless of what our binge food of choice is, we’ll be less likely to binge if we realize just how long it’s going to take to use up those calories.


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