I ate too much: What to do when you’ve overdone it

I have a burning passion for Terra root vegetable chips.

I love them.

I love them like a son.

When it comes time to party, I’m there with my hummus and veggie chips all. night. long.

So the other day I had a party.

Now, I didn’t plan to eat the whole bag. (Who does?)

But they were so good and I kept munching and before I knew it there was only a handful left – so why not finish it?

Apparently an entire bag of chips is too much, even vegetable ones. My party ended with a bloated tummy and a firm resolution to never. again.

Sigh.

Sadly, this isn’t a one-time episode. And I imagine I’m not alone.

Have you ever over-indulged?

Maybe it’s not veggie chips and hummus. Maybe it’s chocolate, ice cream, or those dang girl scout cookies. But once you start, your will power ends. Good resolutions crumble and indulgence wins.

What do you do when you’ve overdone it?

You may feel like hating yourself, swearing off everything you love, eating kale and water from now on. Because you’re a BAD person with no self control.

But here’s the deal:

Food is not a right or wrong, Sydney-or-the-bush thing.

Food is nourishment. It’s flavor. When shared, it’s fellowship.

And food is a choice. Your choice.

There’s no moral high ground. No perfection to be achieved.

What you eat can hurt or heal you, but – still – who wants to eat healthy all the time? You decide when a splurge is worth it.

(You get to decide!)

If you’ve over-indulged, here’s my advice.

Though it may sit heavy now (especially on the stomach), know that it wasn’t “wrong.” It was your choice. At the worst, you learned that you don’t want to make that choice again.

Throw out the guilt.

But you may be asking “What do I do? It’s well and good to have no guilt. But I feel like a bloated pig. WHAT DO I DO?”

I’m glad you asked. I happen to have a little checklist.

7 tips for recovering when you’ve overeaten:

  1. Sip lemon water (or diluted apple cider vinegar). This gently supports the acidity of the stomach to get things moving. Instead of…sitting.
  2. Give yourself recovery time. If it’s midday, take at least a four-hour fast to let things settle. If it’s late, wait twelve hours, or until breakfast. (Ahhh, tincture of time cures a many ills.)
  3. Get moving! Gentle exercise will encourage the *cough* bowels to move. Which is soooo much better than letting it sit.
  4. Sip on some herbal tea. My favorites are peppermint, dandelion root, and lemon-ginger. If constipated, senna tea provides relief. (Be wise – it’s very…moving.
  5. Take a nap. Yes, succumb to the carbo coma. If you’re drowsy take a break, and let your body focus on recovery.
  6. Gently massage the stomach clockwise. This is my favorite if I’m plugged up after overeating. Start between your belly button and right hip, and work up to the rib cage, across to the left, and down to between your belly button and opposite hip.
  7. Keep a regular eating schedule. DON’T starve yourself. Yes, a short fast helps, but skipping food for too long will 1) put your body in starvation mode and cause it to store fat and 2) give you mad cravings. (Which won’t help the will power.)

I wish you the best, friend. May your recovery be quick, your willpower strong, and your joy in occasional second servings of dessert be undiminished.

Because sometimes you should have your cake and eat two, too.

Love and health,

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