#138 How to Deal with Guilt and Shame after Compulsive eating: Bariatric Mental Health Q & A

bariatric surgery success podcast

HOST: Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Dr.

Susan Mitchell 


When was the last time you ate so much that you felt stuffed? Was it a big Thanksgiving meal or when you celebrated your best friend’s birthday with that ginormous cake and ice cream? Maybe after a bad day, you almost finished a half gallon of ice cream along with some cookies while watching TV. How did you feel afterward? Frustrated that you ate so much you made your stomach hurt or did you play the guilt and shame game? Overeating every once in a while is normal. However, in compulsive eating, food is often the way of coping with negative emotions. Then you feel guilty, ashamed or depressed. These are different feelings than when you just ate too much at Thanksgiving. Bariatric psychologist Dr. Connie joins me to talk about compulsive eating and how to deal with those feelings of guilt and shame.

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Guest: Connie Stapleton, PhD

Website: http://www.conniestapletonphd.com

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Listen now for a lively discussion. Here are the questions Dr. Connie and I discuss on today's episode:

Let’s start by explaining the difference between compulsive eating and binge eating disorder also called BED.

Today, our focus is on compulsive eating. I often see compulsive eating start as a result of diet restriction where foods are seen as either good or bad. When you don’t allow yourself certain foods, at some point it’s easy to say, forget it and eat way too much of that restricted food. Other times, it starts as a mindless habit like munching in front of TV instead of eating a meal of protein food and other macros on a regular schedule. From your perspective how does someone typically start compulsive eating? Are there underlying emotional issues or a negative body image? 

What stands in the way of asking for treatment for either compulsive overeating?

How common is compulsive eating in the bariatric community?

Before someone is cleared for surgery, do they need to be treated for compulsive eating first? 

Let’s get specific. How do you overcome guilt and shame? What are your best strategies?

What haven’t you said that we need to know?

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