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  1. #1
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    Definition of Normal Eating

    "Normal eating is being able to eat when you are hungry and continue eating until you are satisfied... It is leaving some cookies on the plate because you know you can have some again tomorrow, or it is eating more now because they taste so wonderful when they are fresh. Normal eating is overeating at times: feeling stuffed and uncomfortable. It is also undereating at times and wishing you had more. Normal eating is trusting your body to make up for your mistakes in eating. Normal eating takes up some of your time and attention, but it keeps its place as only one important area of your life. In short, normal eating is flexible. It varies in response to your emotions, your schedule, your hunger, and your proximity to food."

    Ellyn Satter (1987)



    does anyone else have any definitions they'd lack to add???

  2. #2
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    [list][*]not stressing about whether or not to eat[*]not feeling guilty about eating or not eating[*]not feeling as if you have anything to hide from other people about your eating[*]not feeling as if there's something wrong with you because of something linked to your eating habits[/list:u]

  3. #3
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    That all makes sense to me. What about restricting something from your diet ie) vegetarianism? Many people do this either because of morals, preference or health reasons (not necessarily to stay thin). Say for example a person really enjoys fish, but then just eliminates it from their diet for ANY of the reasons above. What if everyone is at a seafood restaurant and that person is craving the fish, but refuses to eat it? Is that abnormal eating? Or, say someone feels uncomfortable every time they're asked out to dinner because they don't eat meat? Just curious as to what you think.
    There's also the great importance that we put on schedules. It's supposed to be more healthy to eat breakfast. But, what if some people are really truly just not hungry at breakfast time, so they wait until lunch to eat? Who's eating is more normal. The person who eats breakfast because they're "supposed to" or the person who waits until they're more hungry?
    One more thing. It's abnormal to dwell on your eating and think about it too much. However, sometimes not thinking about it enough leads to health problems (obesity, malnutrition, diebetes).
    Have we come so far away from being able to listen to our bodies, and our minds and bodies working as one? I'm really not sure, I'm just bringing up questions I've had in my own head.

  4. #4
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    Who's eating is more normal. The person who eats breakfast because they're "supposed to" or the person who waits until they're more hungry?
    I have personally found that my body acclimates to just about any eating routine. For example, if I am not in the habit of eating breakfast, I will not be hungry for it; alteratively, if I usually eat breakfast I am very hungry pretty quick after I wake up. I have found the same thing with night time eating. It seems like the key is pretty much to make yourself have the eating habits you want at first and eventually (pretty quickly) your body will get with the program too.

    That's just my opinion though=)

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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    Yes, I agree. The same thing happens to me. Unfortunately, people with eating disorders can use that to their advantage. You can get yourself used to eating less and skipping meals. OK, you might still be hungry and you might not be functioning at your best, but it becomes easier to do. I guess because your body does it's best to adapt to the situation.

  6. #6
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    I don't know what normal eating is. I don't think I have ever eaten normally. I remember being hungry a lot as a child and my eating disorders really started when I was probably 12 or 13 or around that time.

    There are times when I think I eat normally, but it doesn't feel right and I usually go back to the old ways. I have just accepted the weird eating as part of me like the color of my eyes.

  7. #7
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    I never eat breakfeast, I'd be sick if I did, I have two glasses of water and then a cup of tea later on, and then eat around 10.00/11.00. My dad use to make me eat a full cooked breakfeast before school, he would literally force me to eat it, I would get into trouble if I didn't. I use to feel so ill in the morning after that and use to be physically sick.

  8. #8
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    Normal Eating- what is it?

    Diana- I think that people who are vegetarians still have 'normal' eating habits, unless they either do it for the wrong reasons (ie. to lose weight) or if they don't know how to properly balance their diets. In terms of not eating fish or meat and then being in an uncomfortable situation b/c this particular food is there, I think again it does depend on why the person eliminated the food from their diet. If someone chooses to do so b/c or moral, religious, health reasons then that has become 'normal' for them. A vegetarian may feel uncomfortable when meat is around but I don't think that makes their eating 'not normal'. This is where the confusion w/ 'normal' comes in... what is normal? Is my normal your normal, etc? I think the definition that I threw up here was trying to say that there's all kinds of different 'normals' for everyone, depending on so many different factors, but in the end, there's some kind of trend, and this trend is not detrimental to the person's health, emotionally or physically. So if someone chooses not to eat breakfast that doesn't make their eating not normal, but if they chose to do so to lose weight then they deviate from their normal and the norm of taking in enough nutritients to sustain your body. Some of my friends don't eat breakfast, some do, in the end they're all 'normal' in terms of eating, sometimes those who don't eat breakfast tend to eat more later anyways.

    As you said, abnormal eating also includes the thoughts and feelings that come w/ that, and it can mean an excess of food intake or a lack. If someone has a disease and their body is unable to properly digest food their eating would still be abnormal but the reason why their eating is this way is different- and that reason makes all the difference btwn someone w/ an ed and someone w/out one. I think the more you do this, have this mind set of someone w/ an ed, the more you're unable to listen to your own body, your own needs... so if you feel sad you eat, or don't eat instead of dealing w/ the emotion.

    It seems like the key is pretty much to make yourself have the eating habits you want at first and eventually (pretty quickly) your body will get with the program too
    this might be true. but things are a little bit more complicated w/ ed's; as Diana said w/ anorexia for ex. your body adjusts to the lack of food and you're less hungry, but your life still revolves around food. even for someone w/out an ed, say someone who is obese and wants to lose some weight simply for health reasons, just wanting to be more healthy won't allow them to "make themselves" do so...

    There are times when I think I eat normally, but it doesn't feel right and I usually go back to the old ways
    I totally know what you mean. it's like everyone else's normal isn't our normal anymore. so even if eating does improve if everything else isn't dealt w/ (underlying issues, reasons, other probs) then it just doesn't feel right... I was trying to explain this to the counsellor that I saw those few x's... that my kind of binge isn't a binge as it is defined but say 1/2 meal and then a little bit of a snack later one... I know this isn't 'normal' per say in terms of what's healthy or what the majority of people would consider normal, but for myself it seems 'normal', but then again not even, b/c even that feels wrong. does this make any sense?

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