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Guilty about feeling full. Help?


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Sorry this is so long, but this has been on my mind.

I have done a lot of yo-yo dieting over the last 6 years, gaining and losing the same 20-30 pounds that I originally put on thanks to emotional eating (mainly fast food. I lived not too far from Tom D. in Atl, and there were a ridiculous number of fast food and sit-down restaurants near me) during a stressful time in my life. Probably like a lot of people here, I'm hoping to lose weight and better understand and control the psychological hold that alcohol and food have over me.

I'm not technically overweight, but I'm many pounds heavier than the weight I've maintained for a good part of my life. I lived in a part of Asia for 4 years where the people disliked sweet food, so I was forced to limit the amount of sugar I ate. I did drink alcohol and eat some of the other banned foods, but not in the amount I eat in the US. And little fast food. My body settled into a weight about 34 pounds lighter than I am now, and I wasn't hungry. (I actually thought I needed to GAIN about 5 pounds when I moved back because I was beginning to look gaunt as I got older.) So I feel very uncomfortable in my body now.

One of the things I'm having trouble with is disassociating feeling full (not stuffed, but satiated) with gaining weight. When I think of weight loss, I think of always being slightly (or a lot) hungry. I associate that hungry feeling with burning fat and losing weight. It doesn't help that I tried to clean up my diet earlier this summer without starving myself for about a month and lost 5-ish pounds (water weight, I assume) rather quickly and then stalled. I became discouraged, ate everything in sight for a month and gained 7 pounds.

I'm looking at my food diary (what I find helpful about MyFitnessPal), and I see sugar (flax seed peanut butter, salad dressing, ketchup, small 'indulgences' of dark choc) , grains (oatmeal, GF bread), and dairy (string cheese) during my diet 'clean-up'. So I obviously know Whole30 is different. But I can't shut down that part of my brain that thinks there's no way I'm going to lose weight on a Whole30, 60, 90 or ever because I'm not hungry. Has anyone else dealt with this? I guess I don't know how to just eat anymore like a regular person without it being tied to a lot of psychological chatter and guilt. And realizing that is making me so sad right now. How is it possible that food can cause all of this.

Any advice is welcome. Thx.

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You are not alone! I recently noticed that I have started waiting way too long in the morning before having my first meal, waiting until I am REALLY hungry. I also started leaving out one meal per day (food restriction), and I wasn't eating veggies more than MAYBE once a day.

It took me about a week to truly become aware of what I was doing, and then i decided to fix it.

I re-read much of the book, "It Starts With Food," and i resolved to participate more on these forums--especially asking for help--and to take things one meal at a time. This morning I ate within 30 minutes of getting up, and i had eggs, potatoes, bacon, and a ton of asparagus.

Here's what I have realized: Left to my own thoughts and decisions, I gain and lose the same 20 to 40 pounds over and over and over. Clearly, I know how to lose weight, but I DON'T know how to eat in a healthy, non-disordered, non-restricted way, long term. If I keep doing it my way, the outcome is very predictable: weight loss, then weight gain. So, I'm going to take a leap of faith, follow the W30 meal template, and--perhaps most importantly--acknowledge and TOLERATE my mental discomfort with feeling full, amounts of fats, etc. (True physical discomfort is different; I could not finish all my eggs this morning because I was STUFFED after finishing the asparagus.)

I can go back to my old familiar way of eating any time I want to. Today, I don't want to... so the W30 meal template for me today.

(I'm sure others will remind us that the W30 is NOT a weight-loss plan. It is designed to help me identify food sensitivities, and change my relationship with food... and that's what your post, and my recent experience, are all about... our relationship with food. Hang in there!)


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My body settled into a weight about 34 pounds lighter than I am now, and I wasn't hungry. (I actually thought I needed to GAIN about 5 pounds when I moved back because I was beginning to look gaunt as I got older.)


Read what you wrote here - you went several years, maintaining your body weight, and you were never hungry.  Did you feel guilty then? It doesn't sound like you did, so why should you feel guilty now?


Those years of not feeling hungry clearly worked for you, so why would you be comparing how you feel now (satisfied) to how you felt for years of dieting (hungry/unsatisfied), which clearly did not work? Focus on that - you are doing what works for your body. There's no need to feel guilty about that.

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