These 4 Strategies Will Help You Stop Weekend Binge Eating

Wondering how to stop weekend binge eating once and for all? Overcoming binge eating is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight. But there are some steps that you can take on your own or with a coach to deal with this struggle and finally find freedom around food!

Written by Jenn Hand, Holistic Nutritionist, Board Certified Health Coach, NBC-HWC, Binge Eating Coach

Weekends used to be one of my biggest challenges when I was stuck in the diet/binge cycle.

I would be SO good during the week–I stuck to my food plans, I exercised religiously, and I’d say no to all sugar.

But come the weekend? Rules were off the table. It seems as if I spiraled into a weekend binge and couldn’t control myself.

Now that my weekends look balanced and “normal” when it comes to eating, here are the four strategies I’ve found that helped me and my clients the most to stop weekend binge eating!

1. Explore whether you’re being too rigid during the week 

A big cause of weekend bingeing is the rebellion of being “too good” during the week.

This was a big one for me, as I ate according to very strict rules, and it backfired come Friday. Where can you relax your food rules a little bit during the week so you don’t need to rebel and let off steam via a binge?  

2. Gently plan for the weekend 

Typically, our weekend routine is much different from the work week.

Embrace this! It doesn’t mean it’s better or worse, it’s just different. We can plan around the more relaxed nature of a weekend schedule. Do you have gatherings, parties, or obligations? Be sure to gently plan a regular cadence of eating leading up to them, so you don’t arrive starving (and end up overeating.)

Maybe you want to switch up your usual breakfast to try some nutritious protein pancakes or something new.

See if you can have a gentle plan for your day, taking into consideration errands, obligations, and other activities. This will help you know the rhythm of the day so you don’t get too hungry and end up overeating. 

3. Find the balance of permission and structure

When we’re working to stop dieting and find our normal, it can be confusing to know how to eat.

A part of this process is learning to find what balance of permission and structure we need. This is something that is unique to each of us–do we need to relax a bit more around food?

Do we need to loosen our rules because we end up bingeing over them? Or do we need a bit more guidelines and planning to help us come back from feeling like we are out of control? Explore what amount of each you need–that sweet spot is what will help you let go of weekend binge eating! 

4. Remember–pretty good is perfect! 

Aim for progress, not perfection.

You don’t have to be perfect around food–in fact, there isn’t really a perfect way to eat. Life is messy and food isn’t black or white. Be gentle with yourself and aim for “pretty good” when you’re working to stop bingeing.

This will help you be more compassionate with yourself and help you learn from the times you do end up overeating so you can take that feedback into account for next time! 

Common Questions about Weekend Binge Eating

How do you stay on track with eating on the weekends? 

Four actionable tips to help you feel balanced around food on the weekends are eating enough protein every time you eat, making sure you don’t skip meals or go too long without eating, throwing out rigid rules and diets, and addressing the emotional reasons why you eat. 

How do I eat healthy on the weekend?

Instead of making a rule to eat healthy, see if you can aim for balance.

Asking  “how do I eat balanced?” helps you pick food choices not from a rigid rule based mindset, but from a nourishing, calm space inside. 

Is it okay to have “cheat” meals?

For women who’ve struggled with food, I’m not a big fan of cheat meals.

It can mess with our minds and keep us stuck in the diet/overeat cycle. The reality is that weekend eating does look a little different than during the week, simply because our schedules are different. This is okay!

Maybe you’re a bit more relaxed around food on the weekends–that’s okay too. You can keep yourself balanced by finding the “right” amount of how much permission vs structure you need.

Read More:

🌷3 Things To Do When You Have A Weekend Of Bad Eating

🌷Are Your “Food Rules” Holding You Back?

🌷Another Year, Another “I’m Going on a Diet”?

🌷 How to End Binge Eating Forever

Work with a Emotional Eating & Holistic Nutrition Coach

Overcome Bingeing and Emotional Eating, and Break Up with Yo-yo Dieting

Working with a emotional eating coach and holistic nutritionist can help you get free from the frustrating binge and restrict cycle and stop yo-yo dieting.

You don’t have to be obsessed with food or have a million rules around eating to find your natural weight and learn to love your body. Ready to actually see a lasting change and experience true freedom?

Schedule a 20-min Call

About the Author: 

Jenn Hand has been helping women like you become normal eaters since 2015.

She’s worked with thousands of women, helping them to balance their bodies, end bingeing, stop obsessing over food, and start feeling amazing again.  As a board-certified health coach and holistic nutritionist, Jenn knows how to support you in making real positive changes that last.

Her articles have been published on Mind Body Green, Tiny Buddha, Thrive Global and other local and global media platforms. She’s the author of How to Be a Normal Eater and the creator of The Normal Eater’s Club program. Listen to Jenn’s advice and tips on the Cake Doesn’t Count Podcast, or read more of her articles for free on the Food Freedom Blog.

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