My name is Beth and I am a Food Addict.
The idea that a person can be a food addict has probably not crossed a lot of peoples minds. Unless of course, like me, you are a self proclaimed food addict. I do not need a Dr or Psychiatrist to tell me that I am addicted. I already know …. as she stuffs another piece of pizza in her mouth.
What most people don’t know is that for we food addicts the reward and pleasure centers of the brain that are usually triggered by addictive drugs are for us, triggered by food; especially highly palatable foods. These highly palatable foods are rich in; Sugar, Fat and Salt.
Like addictive drugs, these highly palatable foods trigger the feel-good brain chemicals such as dopamine; and once we food addicts start experiencing pleasure associated with the increased dopamine transmission in the brain’s reward pathway from eating certain foods, like Pizza, we quickly feel the need to eat again.
This is another vicious circle because the reward signals from these highly palatable (and highly addictive) foods can override the other signals like fullness and satisfaction. As a result, we keep eating, even if we are full. I know for a fact that I can lose control over my eating and I often find myself spending excessive amounts of time involved with food and over-eating. And if I am not eating, I am thinking about when I can eat again.
Food Addicts will continue to eat despite negative consequences, such as excessive weight gain. And like people who are addicted to drugs, us food addicts will have trouble stopping this behavior, even if we want to or have tried many times to cut back.
This is not going to be an easy road. Food Addiction has been a major part of my life. In fact a part of my life for almost 14 years. Whilst I know it is a long road ahead, with the help of my Surgeon and my Nutritionist I know I can get off this merry-go-round. I can beat my Food Addiction. I can succeed.