Is Stress Lurking or is Fear Knocking? – Dr. Lisa Ortigara Crego

Is Stress Lurking or is Fear Knocking?

Weight Control

Let Me Help You!

This morning I was enjoying a leisurely power walk  while listening to Joanna Penn’s podcast, The Creative Penn where she talked about how often we struggle with distractions as writers. 

The guest on her show, Nir Eyal, spoke on steps to overcome this problem.   #470 – How to Focus and be Indistractable with Nir Eyal

I thought about the show and our current Corona virus pandemic as it spreads around the globe. The series was from months back, January 13, 2020 when we were just settling down from the holiday season looking forward to planning out the year. So much has changed since then in just a few short months. 

I live in South Florida where we are darn good at preparing for hurricanes–but something like a worldwide pandemic, I noticed people swaying back and forth in their purchase decisions, not certain on what they should buy. Loads of chips, water…and toilet paper seemed to be in their carts. The feel was odd, as it was a hurricane mode feel, but at a wider panic.

So, wherever you are when you’re reading this, whether in  front of the virus or behind, I wonder what you are struggling with. Often I get in the groove of writing my blogs and maybe don’t ask my blog readers what they’re struggling with, so now I ask you, “What are you struggling with?”…perhaps I can help you.

As a writer I think my friends are almost welcoming a shut-in to get some writing time in. All the distractions mentioned in the podcast seem combatable, at least on some levels.

One question discussed in the Podcast was, “Is it our fault that we’re so distractible?” And of course the answers are many depending on what’s going on in your life. I find the eating disorder population, my area of expertise, is distracted by the food obsessions and brain fog from eating poor quality foods. So imagine trying to write a constructive sentence when your in a fog and on top of it fearful of what’s going to happen with this virus.

Fear also brings on distraction. Fear of success whether it’s about success in writing or success in releasing obsessions with food, weight, body image…etc.

Though the listeners of Joanna’s podcast are writers, my blog readers might be a combination of writers, practitioners, and mostly readers with weight and body issues. And though the podcast points out that the writer feels like it’s a personal failure, that they are somehow weak and pathetic when they don’t work on their writing, the eating disordered person feels the same.

What I found fascinating while I was listening to the interview was that Nir made it clear that he only writes books for problems that he has. That was a bingo for me. I only write about problems I had, and problems I personally resolved, in all of my blog posts and books. And like Nir, I buy every book and listen to every podcast on the subject as I power through to find answers. Sometimes I do find exactly what I need and sometimes it opens up more questions.

So though I was listening to the Podcast to gleam some writing tips, I also ventured off thinking about this virus pandemic and the current book I’m writing, Release Your Obsession with Aging, Heal from the Inside Out and found all three meshed together. With this crisis in front of us the population I work with may slip into anxiety and fear hence turn to food to calm the jitters.

So rather than getting distracted from our health goals, or writing, for those of us that write too, perhaps we need to pull it together and become more proactive in powering through some scary weeks ahead as we fact the Corona virus head on. Like Nir says, “Anything can be a distraction,” and I believe that to be true. Some distractions are excuses and some are driven by pure fear. I believe the virus distraction is real and quite scary for most.

I Once Weighed 234 Pounds…

When I was 234 pounds and bingeing on sugary, starchy foods I didn’t know how to stop my wild consumption…at that time I had no idea I was a food addict suffering from binge eating disorder. I know, I know…that’s a scary title…perhaps we can soften it and call it compulsive eating.

Anyway,whatever you choose to call it makes no difference as you already know it’s truly awful regardless of the name. Worse yet, millions of people suffer with it and it’s only getting worse as more and more processed foods line the shelves at the grocery stores across America. And with this pandemic foodies are turning even more to the foods to calm their fears. And of course we know it will only do the opposite.

Needing Somebody to Talk to…

I wish I had somebody I could tell when I was up to my eye balls with no way out of my total misery. I had no way out…or so I thought.

I was scared.

I was lost, in a panic and totally alone with my secret.

I felt shamed that I could accomplish so many great things with my life, even in the toughest of situations, yet I couldn’t handle food appropriately.

Can I help you? What are your struggles?

You Always Have A Choice!











Dr. Lisa’s Struggles….

My list of  things I struggled with…perhaps your list looks the same.

1. Once I ate anything with sugar, flour, and wheat I was off and running and could not stop eating.
2. It seemed I could not lose weight no matter what I ate…especially when I got older.
3. Nobody seemed to “get” me or help me.
4. My weight would come off initially but I always gained it back.
5. My emotions were all over the place…up and down…almost felt bipolar but knew somehow I wasn’t.
6. People didn’t understand why I could not eat just a smidgen of sugar.
7. People invited me to drink alcohol, which was never an issue for me, but because of the sugar it sent me into a tailspin with food and they didn’t understand…nor supported me.
8. My family of origin didn’t understand. Take my beautiful 91 year old Italian father who couldn’t “get” why I wouldn’t eat bread or pasta…almost sacrilegious to him.
9. I didn’t know how to begin the journey of letting go of processed foods.
10. The thought of preparing “real” foods seemed daunting to me.

Any of this sound familiar? I’m betting it does and that you could add to this list big time. And then imagine this list with the fears of the Corona virus and it’s quite destructive…or even distracting…

Today I live such a different life… than when I was in the food eating any sweetened,salty or fatty foods I could get my hands on. I thought I’d die without fast foods, doughnuts, cakes and cookies but I didn’t. I lived and changed my whole way of thinking and my relationship with food. I never ever would have believed that these cravings would go away and I’d eat like a “normal” person weighing a “normal” weight.


Where do you begin?

1. Start with your first meal and make sure it’s real and not processed…meaning it doesn’t come out of a box or bag.
2. Record what you eat so you can see your pattern.
3. Note which foods are giving you a hard time: cravings
4. Take small walks when you feel uncomfortable.
5. Practice breathing techniques to get calm
6. Get all junk foods out of the house
7. Fill your refrigerator and cupboards with real foods.
8. Drink lots of water
9. Never skip meals
10. Reach out and let me help you with whatever you struggle with

Reach Out for Help…

Please feel free to reach out and ask me for help. I’ve been working in the field of eating disorders for more than twenty years, and counseling at Weight Watchers thirteen years and suffered from binge eating disorder starting at the age of 13…leaving me with a whole lot of years of experience and knowledge on how to get you off the whirlwind of binge eating and all that comes with it even during a crisis such as the Corona Virus. 

I’m glad to walk in sync with Southern Grace my Swiss Shepherd to the positive Podcast of  Joanna Penn who always teaches me something and today was no different…

Do you compulsive eat?

Who or where do you turn for direction with regards to food, weight, and overall health?

Have you lost and gained the same weight over and over?

Please share your thoughts…simply scroll down to the comments section and let me hear your story…let me help you…

Stay tuned…you never know where my mind will wander…

You can leave a comment by scrolling down to the section that says leave a reply.  I look forward to hearing from you!

Hugs to you, I care!

Dr. Lisa

Check Out My Latest Books:

Release Your Obsession with Food: Heal from the Inside Out

Release Your Obsession with Diet Chatter: Heal from the Inside Out

Release Your Obsession with Cheat DAZE: Heal from the Inside Out

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Check out my newest book and explore why you eat out of control when it’s a holiday, birthday, vacation or just your plain ole “cheat day.” Learn the what and why about the foods you eat to better understand why food can cause your moods to swing, your cravings to soar, your weight to increase, your self-esteem to plummet, and your fatigue to rage.

No More Diet Mentality!

About the Author Lisa Ortigara Crego

Speaker, writer, licensed clinical psychotherapist, PhD in addiction psychology, eating disorder professional, hypnotherapist changing the view about compulsive eating one addict at a time.

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