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Food Addiction Help -Compulsive Overeating

Millions of Americans suffer from compulsive overeating. For some, sugar is the addiction and yet for others, high-fat foods and even carbohydrates are the substances of choice. I say substance becaus...

Millions of Americans suffer from compulsive overeating. For some, sugar is the addiction and yet for others, high-fat foods and even carbohydrates are the substances of choice. I say substance because, in essence, compulsive overeaters use food in a way that closely mirrors drug or alcohol abuse. The basis for every addiction is the need to manage or alleviate emotional pain, and compulsive overeating is no exception to that rule. Accordingly, food provides comfort and serves as a diversion from difficult emotional issues and feelings. Hence, it really can be described as “food for thought” because the compulsive overeater does trade food for thought.

There are, indeed, several components to this disorder which can appear in varying degrees from one case to the next. However, one that is always common is low self-esteem. Folks who struggle with compulsive overeating often struggle with personal identity and personal power. These emotional issues are generally born in patterns of family dysfunction such as verbal, physical and sexual abuse. And, of course, they can also cause depression and/or anxiety. This only compounds the compulsion.

But, if you peer deeply into the minds of compulsive overeaters, I have found that there are generally two main thought processes that drive their behavior.

  1. The food acts as a diversion from emotional issues and feelings. It allows them to burry and ignore issues that have undermined there self-esteem, stripped them of their identity and robbed them of their personal power.
  1. Compulsive overeaters use the food to gain weight in an effort to pad themselves from society or as a means of protection from those who have abused or mistreated them. In essence, it’s the equivalent of building a blockade or fortress around you. Most don’t recognize this dynamic until it is pointed out since it is often driven subconsciously.

Sadly, instead of addressing these core issues, some of the mainstream attempts to make food the issue, which only serves to exacerbate the situation. One area that’s commonly probed is the kind of relationship one has with food. Let’s get something straight here! Food is necessary and vital to our existence. It provides us nutrients, fuel and life force. It is purely sustenance – nothing more, nothing less! You shouldn’t have a relationship with food – period! If you want to evaluate your relationships start by examining the one you have with yourself then move to those in your immediate family!

Another theory that is often at the forefront is hyper-palatable or trigger-foods. The proponents of the trigger food theory state that certain foods like high-sugar and high-fat foods are simply more addictive in nature and for the compulsive overeater can trigger binge or compulsive overeating. This line of thinking is largely responsible for the term food addiction. Theoretically, hyper-palatable foods – those loaded with sugar, fat and salt, stimulate senses and provide a reward that leads to addictive behavior. This theory mirrors, verbatim, the disease concept of drug and alcohol addiction. However, there is no empirical evidence to prove either hypothesis. In my opinion, whether a food trigger actually exists or it doesn’t is completely irrelevant. Conversely, why someone is pulling the trigger, is!

And finally, there are those that insist on making food the focal point. As I stated earlier, food is sustenance, nothing more or less! Yet, many counselors, eating disorder specialists and even well known published authors profess that the key to overcoming an eating disorder lies within the food. It’s as if by gazing down at a plate laden with meat, potatoes and veggies that the secrets of the universe will magically unfold! In addition, some of these folks profess that following a more healthy diet lends itself to better emotional health and even spiritual evolution. Strangely, they ask us to believe that grazing on a piece of kale will lead to enlightenment. I totally disagree! Your emotional health and level of consciousness has absolutely nothing to do with the food you eat. You could eat “Kibbles and Bits, and it wouldn’t make one bit of difference. Ironically, though, the greater one’s emotional health and well being, the greater one takes care of themselves, which includes eating a healthy diet without abusing food.

If you’d like more information on how to overcome addiction, subscribe to my free e-course below……

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David Roppo

The Addiction Freedom Coach

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Addiction Freedom & True Life Purpose expert David Roppo is fiercely committed to helping people; achieve addiction freedom, unlock their true life purpose, and create a life filled with passion & prosperity.

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