To The Girl With Binge-Eating Disorder

To The Girl With A Binge-Eating Disorder

Food isn't the problem.

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Wake up. Go to class. Nibble on a snack. Go to my other class. Study. Eat a granola bar. Write a paper. Drive home. Pull out whatever leftovers are in the fridge and eat until I'm satisfied, right? No, I ate a little more. After all, I was starving because I hadn't really eaten all day and was making up for the calories I didn't consume earlier. "If I just eat a little bit during the day, then I can eat whatever I want when I get home," I lied to myself. "The calories will all balance out."

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This was my life for several months when I was in college. I commuted to class every day and didn't want to buy the expensive food on campus, so I just brought a couple of snacks with me and called it good. I was also struggling with the fact that I gained weight since graduating from high school and starting college (but who doesn't?). Being involved in sports my entire life, I never had to watch what I put into my body. That is until college came around and I wasn't nearly as active as I had been. Feeling my clothes getting tighter and not liking what I saw in the mirror, I decided that food was the enemy and I needed to defeat it.

Photo by Volkan Olmez

The Mayo Clinic says: "Binge-eating disorder is a serious eating disorder in which you frequently consume unusually large amounts of food and feel unable to stop eating." The Clinic goes on to explain that while we all overeat sometimes, especially during the holidays, for some people this becomes a regular way of life. I was never diagnosed with a binge-eating disorder, but I certainly could have been if I kept going down the path of eating way too much. Thanks to close family members and friends, I developed a healthy view of food, realizing that food is not the enemy. My issue was that I felt like my academic performance and getting outstanding grades was the only thing that mattered. I put my identity, worth, and my all into having impressive grades. Every other area of my life, especially my physical health, suffered because of it.

Photo by Kendal James

Binge-eating disorder often occurs in people who are trying "to deal with anger, sadness, boredom, anxiety, or stress." If this is you, I want you to know that I see and I get where you are coming from. I would get angry when I didn't receive the grade I wanted on an assignment. I was sad because my social life was practically nonexistent due to my obsessiveness with near-perfect grades. I was bored with school, I was anxious, and I was stressed about what I would do after graduation. If you feel yourself falling into that pit of despair and like there's no way out, know that 1. You're truly not alone in this. And 2. You're going to get through this if you seek help. Talk to your doctor, talk to someone who's close to you, and ask for accountability. You can do this.

Photo by Ben White

Lastly, remember that food isn't the enemy. Eating too much is just as unhealthy as eating too little. Both are extremes on opposite ends. Know that you are "fearfully and wonderfully made." You may have heard that before and rolled your eyes (I certainly have), but when you read the entire Psalm where that verse is found, Psalm 139, you begin to understand a lot more. Our bodies, our lives, and everything we have belong to the Lord. It's not for us to abuse or call worthless. Don't let the real Enemy creep in and whisper lies to you. God knows who you are and that's all that really matters.

Photo by Amadeo Muslimović

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These Are 4 Proven Ways That Vaccines Cause Autism

Stock up on those essential oils.

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Let's just start with the first (and main) point.

1. They don't.

Susan in your anti-vax group is not a scholarly source (despite her hours and hours of Google research).

2. But in case you still believe Susan...

Maybe you'll believe Autism Speaks who says, "Scientists have conducted extensive research over the last two decades to determine whether there is any link between childhood vaccinations and autism. The results of this research is clear: Vaccines do not cause autism."

3. And if Autism Speaks still didn't convince you...

Feel free to take a look at this comprehensive list of studies that all say that there is no relationship between vaccines such as the MMR vaccination and the development of autism.

4. But here's what you should know...

There have been a few studies lately that have shown that autism develops in utero aka before a baby is even born AND before a baby can even receive vaccinations.

Vaccinations have prevented COUNTLESS deaths and illnesses. Vaccination rates are continuing to fall and do you know what that means? Measles will make its way back. Whooping cough will come back. Rubella, mumps, and polio will come back and there will be no way to stop it.

So, now that you know that vaccines do not cause autism, you're welcome to go tell Susan from your anti-vax group that as well as tell her that the Earth isn't flat. But, don't forget to mention it to her that her essential oils and organic foods are not keeping her children safe from the measles or tuberculosis.

Vaccinate your children. And, besides, even IF vaccinations caused autism, wouldn't you rather have a child with a developmental disorder rather than a child who died from the measles?

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8 Taco Recipes That Go Way Beyond The Basic Tortillas And Salsa

You can make tacos out of sushi, ice cream and everything in between, you just have to get creative.

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There's no denying tacos are awesome. That's probably why an entire day of the week is dedicated to them. If you're looking for a new way to spice up your Tuesday night, or you just want to try a new twist on an old recipe, you are definitely in the right place.

1. The Bacon Weave Taco

It's a scientific fact that bacon makes everything better. If you're looking for a way to amp up your tacos, what better way than with a bacon-weave shell?

Don't worry, making the shells is super easy and only takes minutes. Once baked, they will hold shape and are ready to be filled to the brim. Stuffed with eggs, chives, cheese, avocado and a touch of salsa, these bacon tacos are sure to satisfy your cravings for everything savory.

2. The Sushi Taco

If you love sushi, why not try it in taco form? These sushi tacos are super easy to make and can be whipped up in less than 30 minutes. The recipe recommends using salmon and tuna but you can always swap them out for your personal favorites.

You'll need a few specialty ingredients, like nori seaweed, which is fried into a shell and sriracha sauce for the spicy mayonnaise. You'll also need sushi rice, which is cooked in a mixture of rice wine vinegar, sugar and salt. The result is a delicious dish you'll want to recreate again and again.

3. The Greek Taco

Yes, it's a gyro, but it's also a taco. If you want a taste of the Mediterranian but can't afford a flight, bring Greece to you with these delicious Greek tacos with lamb and tzatziki sauce.

The sauce, a combination of plain yogurt, lemon juice, garlic and grated cucumber, is simple to put together and can be premade. Once the lamb is cooked, you can assemble your tacos with toppings like spinach, tomatoes and avocado. Don't forget that tzatziki, though, it's literally the best.

4. The Sweet Potato Taco

If you're looking for a tasty new vegetarian recipe or just don't feel like a trip to the grocery store, consider trying these sweet potato and black bean tacos.

The "meat" of these tacos is a mixture of sweet potatoes, onion, garlic, corn and black beans. To get the flavors mingling, honey, lime and spices like cumin and paprika are then tossed in. Once the potatoes are soft, serve the mixture warm over heated corn tortillas.

5. The Cheese Lover’s Taco

Do you call yourself a cheese connoisseur? Are you always looking for the best pairings? If you can't get enough of the orange stuff, then check out these tacos with shells made entirely from cheese.

The shells are simple to make, best done by laying a pile of shredded cheese on a silicone mat and baking for five to seven minutes. Then, the cheese is hung to dry, forming a taco shell shape. Afterwards, you can fill it with your favorite toppings, like ground beef, avocado, sour cream and salsa.

6. The Lettuce Wrap Taco

Choosing between delicious tacos and a swimsuit-ready body can be hard. That's why many of us are looking for ways to cut calories without having to give up our favorite foods. Now, with lettuce wrap tacos, you can enjoy a tasty treat without feeling guilty afterward.

Once you have your romaine lettuce shells, fill the insides with chicken breast cooked with garlic and taco seasoning. Then, top it off with sour cream or Greek yogurt, jalapenos and avocado. You can also substitute your own toppings, like diced tomatoes and feta cheese.

7. The Curry Taco

If you're looking for a taco that can pack a punch, consider trying out these coconut curry chicken tacos. While you'll need the classic grilled corn tortilla to get started, the rest of the recipe is unique.

The chicken curry filling is made with coconut milk, red curry paste and chicken breast. Once cooked, it's topped with Granny Smith apple salsa and mango sauce, which is a combination of mangos, jalapeno chiles and curry paste.

8. The Ice Cream Taco

Tacos aren't limited to the main course. With the right ingredients, like flour tortillas, sugar, chocolate chips and more, they're also a great way to enjoy dessert.

This ice cream taco starts with a regular flour tortilla, fried with butter in a mixture of sugar and cinnamon. Once cooked, you dip the edges of the shell in melted chocolate and allow it to harden. Afterward, fill with your favorite ice cream flavor and cover with toppings like sprinkles and whipped cream.

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