Food addiction is a compulsive disorder affecting millions of people around the globe. Disordered relationships with food and body can lead to dysfunctional behaviors when it comes to eating, diet, and exercise. Some critics have claimed that food addiction is less to blame on mental illness and more to blame on the food system itself. Foods which are the most popular outside of diet trends are usually the most bad for us. High fat, high salt, and high sugar foods are incredibly unhealthy for us. Curiously, they are also the foods we most deeply crave. Craving is one of the phenomenal parts of addiction. Indeed, similar to cocaine, heroin, or alcohol, the brain can crave certain food types even to the point of withdrawal. Give a small child a ton of candy and watch them act with the same erratic hyperactivity of someone who has just taken crystal meth. Similarly, after that candy has worn off, witness the dramatic, emotional meltdown as the brain comes off of sugar. Tears will fall and temper tantrums will be thrown as the child helplessly begs for more. Adults are not immune from food responses which make them act like “candy to a baby”. Rather than experience total highs and total lows, adults experience a subtle and ongoing addiction as well as a powerlessness over food.
Doctors use the Yale Food Addiction Scale to determine what foods might be acting like an addiction in your life. Questions include:
Do you continue to eat even when you are full?
Do you make a special trip or go out of your way to obtain a certain food when you do not have it in your home?
Do you find yourself unable to control how much of a certain food you eat once you start eating it? For example, eating a box of cookies when you intended to eat one.
Do you experience undeniable and insatiable cravings for certain foods?
Other questions revolve around overeating and how it might impair regular lifestyle.
Common addictive food types are:
Foods with refined sugars
Aurora Recovery provides nutritional counseling and education to patients as part of a comprehensive program healing mind, body, and spirit. Strong recovery requires a strong body, healthy lifestyle requires healthy lifestyle choices! Recovery starts with you. Start your recovery with us. Call 1-844-515-STOP today.