Critics Of Food Addiction
Food addiction is not as widely endorsed as the literature suggests.
Some of the main criticisms of the food addiction concept are10Fletcher PC, Kenny PJ. Food addiction: a valid concept? Neuropsychopharmacology. 2018:1.:
- The addictive substances within foods are unclear: This a major problem because the food addiction model assumes that some foods directly affect the brain, hijacking its reward systems. Critics argue that it is difficult to accept claims that food can be addictive if we are yet to pinpoint what the addictive properties are.
- Food addiction = binge-eating disorder: There is a lot of overlap between food addiction and binge-eating disorder, both at the diagnostic level and the symptom level. Given the substantial overlap, critics are wondering whether food addiction is just another fancy term for binge-eating disorder.
- The neurobiological evidence is poor: Critics argue that there is no convincing human evidence showing that neurobiological changes do indeed underlie food addicted behaviours. Also, the same areas of the brain that light up in response to food and drugs may also light up to other pleasurable stimuli.
- Too much reliance on animal models: Although rats show evidence of compulsive eating and a range of other characteristics associated with addiction when given intermittent availability of high-sugar foods, whether these findings can be generalized to humans has been questioned.
How To Overcome Fast Food Addiction
Nowadays, fast food is an indispensable part of the life of many people. The tendency to eat such food has led to the fact that people began to search for efficient ways to deal with this harmful habit, particularly this fast foods harmful consequences. Although there are lots of reasons why you eat unhealthy food, it is important to understand that you can get rid of this habit if you really want to. And Im here to help you today.
Getting To Be A Habit
When words like “food addiction” are bandied about, there are plenty of skeptics who hesitate to put foods like cheese and chocolate into the same category as widely acknowledged addictions such as cocaine or alcohol. But Barnard asks, “What other term would you use for a woman who gets into her car at 11:30 at night and drives six miles to the 7-Eleven to get a chocolate bar, and does it every night? She’s gaining weight, she feels profoundly guilty afterward, and though she resolves to stop this behavior, she does it every night, night after night? That’s a food addiction.”
The proponents of this food addiction theory point to possible differences between the sexes in their compulsions. Women may be more susceptible to chocolate, particularly in the premenstrual period. While some men may have a sweet tooth, many more say that the one food they’re least likely to give up is steak. Barnard points to an April 2000 survey of 1,244 adults, which concluded that one in four Americans wouldn’t give up meat for a week even if they were paid a thousand dollars to do so. “It sounds an awful lot like an addiction to me,” he says.
In an animal study at Princeton University in 2002, researchers found that after rats binged on sugar, they showed classic signs of withdrawal when the sweets were removed from their diet, suggesting that sugar may have addictive properties.
“Yes, people do get into habits,” adds Ayoob. “But the good part is that habits can be changed.”
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The Pain Of Addiction
Those who have never experienced it, cannot ever really comprehend the misery that addiction creates. The situation is serious every aspect of your being is compromised. When you suffer, rational thinking and the ability to summons effort towards long term goals is difficult. The pain of addiction is the equivalent of a leg spurting blood onto the ground. It is an emergency that must be solved now. We can SEE, logically, that ceasing the addictive behaviour would cause our happiness levels to normalise and set us freebut when we are caught in the trap, it seems too hard. We thrash in quicksand, unable to see the solid ground beside us. As with any addiction, junk food addiction creates gradual, incremental physical damage and social ostracism, slowly eating away your lifebut the unbearable part is that we feel to blame. We did through our own actions. This knowledge creates unbridled hopelessness and shame. We know that something is wrong, something so confusing and terrible that all of our effort seems only to have made it worse and for some absurd reason, we cant quite put our finger on what is wrong. We know we must, must, MUST fix it. We must get rid of this pain and hopeless and ridiculous behavior, but we dont know how. Please, get rid of it now? So we do. We make the pain vanish, for this moment, using the only way we know.
This is the trap of addiction.
Please dont despair. There is a way out.
How To Overcome Food Addiction In 10 Steps
Overcome food addiction the food addiction, like other addictions , relates to the difficulty in preventing or controlling the behavior, in this case, food intake.
Overcome food addiction If you tried to start making several diets without success, because you consider yourself a / addict / aa food, you should continue reading this article.
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Why Can Eating Become Addictive
The story begins with a chemical neurotransmitter called dopamine, which is made by our bodies and used by our nervous systems to send messages. Dopamine is often discussed in the context of drug addictions, but less frequently discussed in relation to eating.
To put it simply, when dopamine is released, it positively impacts the areas of your brain associated with pleasure and rewards. Even simpler: It makes you feel good!
So why does eating release dopamine? Letâs think about this from an evolutionary perspective. Our human ancestors had to scavenge for food to survive, and their lives often depended on their ability to do so. To encourage us to continue pursuing behaviours which promoted survival, our brains made eating a pleasurable experience Dopamine release in response to eating acts as a reward system for taking positive actions towards survival.
In todayâs world, however, food is abundant. Instead of being at risk of not having enough food, we tend to experience the opposite, with a prevalence of harmful foods such as fast food and processed sugars that actually put us in danger .
The main point here is that our addictions to different types of foods donât represent a mental weakness or inability on our part to resist cravings, but rather a physiological mechanism that we have no control over.
Keep Your Fridge Stocked With Healthy Tasty Foods
When you fill up on fresh fruits, vegetables, and poultry, you will help keep your hunger at bay and your fast food cravings suppressed. But in order to eat more healthfully at home, you need to make sure you have plenty of healthy foods on hand to satisfy your hunger. If you dont usually do the grocery shopping, offer to take over that task so you can better oversea which type of foods come through your door.
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Is It Worth It In The Long Term
Visualizing the long-term consequences of snacking or otherwise indulging can help some people to curb cravings.
These consequences may include:
- health risks
- feeling reduced levels of energy and happiness throughout the day
This exercise can also help a person to see the big picture and remember why they are dieting or trying to restrict their intake of certain foods.
Stress can play a role in hunger cravings, and long-term stressors can cause some people to crave foods that are sugary or more calorie-dense.
Finding ways to reduce stress may help to eliminate cravings.
Simple means of reducing stress, such as taking regular breaks from work, or even taking a few deep breaths, can help the body to refocus and calm the mind.
It may also help to try mindful stress-relieving practices, such as:
- breathing exercises
/6symptoms Of Food Addiction
There are certain behaviours that could lead others to believe that you suffer from food addiction. Displaying even a few of these symptoms is a cause for concern.
– Eating much more than you intended to.
– Craving certain foods despite feeling full and having finished a meal.
– Overeating all or most of your meals.
– Feeling guilty after eating certain foods, then eating the same foods soon after.
– Justifying to yourself and others why you need to eat something youre craving.
– Trying unsuccessfully to quit eating certain foods.
– Having to hide your consumption of food from others.
– Continuing to eat in excess, knowing the negative consequences of consuming junk foods.
– Going out of your way to obtain certain foods.
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Know The Truth About Junk Food
Most of us eat junk food without really knowing what we are eating. Finding out the ingredients in your favorite junk food can gross you out and make you crave it less.
For instance, processed foods like sausages and Tang contain carcinogens, which have been shown to increase the risk of cancer.
A quick google search will show you all the gross ingredients in your favorite food. You may even want to go farther and research how these foods are prepared.
Its A Serious Problem
Though the term addiction is often thrown around lightly, having a true addiction is a serious condition that typically requires treatment to overcome.
The symptoms and thought processes associated with food addiction are similar to those of drug abuse. Its just a different substance, and the social consequences may be less severe.
Food addiction can cause physical harm and lead to chronic health conditions like obesity and type 2 diabetes .
In addition, it may negatively impact a persons self-esteem and self-image, making them unhappy with their body.
As with other addictions, food addiction may take an emotional toll and increase a persons risk of premature death.
Food addiction increases the risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes. Excessive weight may also affect a persons self-esteem.
Completely avoiding junk foods may seem impossible. Theyre everywhere and a major part of modern culture.
However, in some cases, entirely abstaining from certain trigger foods can become necessary.
Once the firm decision to never eat these foods again is made, avoiding them may become easier, as the need to justify eating or not eating them is eliminated. Cravings may also disappear or decrease significantly.
Consider writing a list of pros and cons to think through the decision.
Write everything down no matter how peculiar or vain it may seem. Then compare the two lists and ask if its worth it.
If the answer is a resounding yes, be assured that its the right decision.
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Learn More About Nutrition
Some people find that learning more about food and how our bodies use it for fuel can be helpful as they overcome food addiction. Learn about the nutrients we need, and also how our bodies and brains use them. For example, learn how having an avocado full of healthy fats can fuel you in a much different way than processed fast foods with a lot of sugar and fat.
These Are A Few Ways For Beating Food Addiction:
1. As soon as you become aware that youre going to have a problem with something, stop! This is similar to the warning on cigarettes, Smoking causes lung cancer. They put it on there to inform people so that they can make an informed decision about what they do or dont want to do.
2. You need to be as clear-minded and as strong-willed as possible before you need to make a decision. For example, if youre about to eat junk food or something thats bad for you, then dont do it! You need the mindset that Im not going to do this because of X reason. You should also keep things like chips/candy in a place where you have to put in extra effort to get it.
3. Find an activity thats as rewarding as the thing youre trying to stop doing. If you want some Oreos after dinner but dont want to eat them, then work out instead! Youll have a great endorphin rush without feeling too guilty since exercise is good for your health anyway!
4. Try to make things as convenient for yourself. Make your body want the good thing more than the bad thing. For example, people had covered their table in fruit or had raw desserts on hand so theyd be able to eat something healthy first when they were about to do something bad.
6. Learn to recognize when your body is asking for something other than food. If you really describe what youre craving or what emotions are driving you to do something, then you might realize that its not hunger, for example, Stress eating.
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The Slippery Slope Of Food Addiction
Someone doesnt just that she wants to feel out of control with food. Instead, its often a slippery slope that leads a person into an addiction with a particular food. Below are some of the warning signs and common traits among people suffering from a food addiction:
- Changes in mood
- Labeling food as good and bad
- Restrictive dieting
- Thinking about food all the time
- Feeling unsatisfied even after meal times
- Weight fluctuations and/or difficulty managing weight
- Body dissatisfaction
- Feeling disgusted, guilty or upset after eating
- Feeling stressed or tension that is only relieved by eating
Tip #: Invest In Your Knowledge Of Healthy Eating
This is my #1 tip for losing weight and eating more healthy.
Clever tricks to cut down on the amount of food you eat is not as effective as learning about low carb, low calories and high nutrient eating.
Ive just waded through my personal collection of books on healthy eating and Ive included links below where you can purchase these books:
- Grains and Mains by Laura Wilson. This book is my absolute favourite. It includes many recipes for ancient grains such as millet, buckwheat, faro and pear barley
- 100 Best Gluten Free Foods by Love Food Editors
If youre looking for addiction recovery books, check out our guide on the best books on addiction recovery »
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Piecing Together The Facts About Food
The truth is that food can make us feel good by eliciting a serotonin and dopamine response similar to the response that is felt when someone becomes addicted to drugs or alcohol. Remember that overcoming food addiction is not a moral failing, nor is it about willpower. Sure, food is debated as an addiction because we need food to live, so how can we just stop using food the way we would stop drinking alcohol or stop using drugs?
The short answer is that you cant just stop eating. You can, however, stop eating the things that make you feel so good that you cant stop eating them.
Prioritize Making Healthy Choices In Every Area Of Your Life
As humans, we gravitate toward easy solutions. We crave convenience. We can use this preference to our advantage when it comes to making healthier decisions. No, you dont have to throw away your Oreos in order to eat healthfully, but you can be strategic with where you store them in your kitchen! Keep those Oreos, but store them out of sight and up high. Do the opposite with healthy foods and snacks, like fresh fruit or energy-packed trail mix. By decreasing the convenience of the junk food, youre less likely to mindlessly grab the package and start noshing.
The next time you experience an intense food craving, remember that its okay to indulge sometimes! But, if youre really trying to defeat your cravings instead, remember Dr. Fasones tips: think about what you can eat, instead of what you cant engage in more positive self-talk like, Im a good person and can get my eating under control and prioritize making healthy choices when it comes to food and other areas of life, too.
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How To Beat It
Theres no quick fix or magic pill to make you stop wanting sugar or foods that you crave. Ultimately, you crave what you regularly feed yourself. So the only way to reduce your cravings is to take a break. If you regularly have something sweet to eat after dinner, its very natural for you to always feel like eating something sweet after dinner. Youre in a bad habit, thats all. Research has shown that fasting particular foods doesnt increase the cravings like it does with true drug addiction, it actually reduces them.
Changing your habits and behaviour is hard work. So you need to get prepared. Here are are few tips to help you beat the sugar high and get in control of your eating.
Summing Howhow To Overcome Food Addiction
Learning how to overcome food addiction isnt necessarily easy, but its certainly possible. If you want to overcome food addiction, it will probably rely on a combination of creating healthy coping mechanisms, gaining a greater understanding of food and your relationship with it, and possibly getting help from a therapist or joining a support group.
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A Culpable Food Industry
Many people believe the food industry spikes food with processed sugars and flours knowing this will lead to food addiction.
Indeed, many supermarket premade dishes contain more sugar than a bar of chocolate! The sweetness of these dishes is often hidden by an infusion of salt and spices.
In fact, some even say processed sugar is more addictive than cocaine!
I recommend you read the book Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us by Michael Moss.
Studies conducted on rats exposed to junk food prove the rats suffer withdrawal symptoms when the junk food is removed similar to that suffered by rats addicted to drugs or alcohol.
This was particularly the case for rats addicted to sugar. When sugar was withdrawn, the rats suffered several withdrawal symptoms: shaking, anxiety and a change in body temperature.
Scientists say youre least likely to become addicted to unprocessed natural foods such as vegetables, nuts, beans and seeds.