It is estimated that as many as 10% of all Americans suffer from food addiction and a variety of treatment options are available. Before undergoing any kind of addiction therapy or treatment, it is important to identify the symptoms and to seek professional advice about whether the person should be treated with medication or not.
Food addiction can cause extreme cravings for unhealthy foods, which can lead to obesity. Like other addictions, this one can take over the way the body processes food and may cause severe nutritional deficiencies that may extend into the physical and mental health of the individual.
If you are suffering from food addiction, there are a few basic rules that will help you to determine if you are suffering from a true dependency or simply a desire to eat. By observing the following three areas, you can begin to build your understanding of your situation.
Know The Difference Between Hunger And Cravings- Another Way To control Food Addiction
How do you feel when you are feeling hungry? To be clear, you should not feel hungry for long periods of time and it is important to know that cravings are not hunger. Rather, cravings are craving something at the exact same moment, but that something has now changed its identity.
Look at your food choices when you are hungry and think about the “wants” they might be for. What is the first thing that comes to mind? Is it food, or is it a fleeting thought?
Are snacks a frequent treat or a reward? In the world of addiction, there are typically five things that a person is addicted to food, drugs, alcohol, gambling, sex, and shopping. In most cases, cravings are similar to the urges associated with a reward, except that the feeling is much stronger. For example, when a person uses a drug, he or she is literally craving it and cannot function without it.
Other Symptoms Of Food Addiction
Other symptoms that may indicate food addiction include binge eating and poor sleep habits. The person may begin sleeping six hours a day, eat to soothe the feelings of hunger, and eat excessively throughout the day. For some people, food becomes their primary activity and a regular part of their daily routine.
People who are addicted to food may not see a problem with eating foods high in fat and calories. But they may have problems with certain types of food or may even have poor physical health. Additionally, people who are emotionally attached to food may suffer from depression or anxiety. This results in overeating and possibly physical problems.
While many addicts argue that they only drink alcoholic beverages and snort cocaine. Alcoholics are often depressed and angry when they start suffering from withdrawal symptoms. This may cause the alcohol addict to take an excessive amount of action to deal with his or her emotions. When the cravings hit, the alcoholic can be highly reactive and abusive towards himself or herself and lose control of his or her life.
Depression and anxiety are also common in people who suffer from food addiction. The person may be overly anxious about eating because they are scared that they are going to eat too much or too little. They may feel hopeless and unhappy, even though they may still be hungry.
Depression and anxiety can make overeating very easy. The person begins to equate their loss of weight to their depression and anxiety, leading them to continue eating more.
Individuals who suffer from substance abuse are also more likely to engage in impulsive behavior. If a person has been abusing drugs for a long period of time, he or she may try to beat the withdrawals with a cocktail of substances. If the same drug is used to combat the withdrawal symptoms, he or she may suffer an overdose.
Individuals who have been struggling with a food addiction should consider seeking professional help, before taking any major decisions about addiction treatment. And those who want to learn more about food addiction and how to cure it should seek out guidance from their family. Or friends, a trusted therapist, or a support group.