Updated: Mar 27, 2021
Food addiction is a very difficult and embarrassing topic that grapples with most people in the world. In most cases, they either don't realize it or are already aware of it, but don't have the strength, courage or motivation to do something about it and change it. The mechanism of addiction is always the same, but we have different source and different results of these sources. Addiction can be drugs, alcohol, but also food or computer games. Personally, it took me a long time to get to where I am now. You've heard more than once that people eat stress, emotions, fill themselves up, cannot control the bouts of gluttony ... Even so called healthy food can become an addiction. And we do not want to constrain ourselves, do we? We want to be free.
How to check if you are an food addict? Lets take coffee into consideration. If you drink coffee from time to time only, and can live without it even when everyone else around drinks it and you don't (and you are ok with that and have your inner peace), then you are ok. But if you need to drink it every day, or whenever you see or smell it your body is craving for it, then it is a bad sign. Are you ok with not eating pizza (doesn't matter whether vegan, raw or other), while everyone is eating it (and you have already had your meal, you are full)? Can you spend your evening in front of the TV without the need to snack something? When stressed, can you get over it normally, or do you need to eat untill you explode (that is until your brain do not think about your problem, because all of your energy went to digestion. By the way, did you know, that 80% of your body energy goes for digestion? Can you imagine how much energy would you have, when adjusting your body to eat less and not so often?)
It is all closely related to our mind. What is mind? The mind is a separate entity. We are not our mind. We, as consciousness, possess the mind and we can guide it. But very often it is the mind that guides us. Just being aware of this has given me a lot. Because from our mind comes addiction to food.
The most important step to take everything into your own hands is: first, throw away all beliefs, rigorous rules, restrictions, programs, absolutely everything, whether it is true or not (I mean only the beginning of this path. Intermittent Fasting is super important, but if we fixate on it and look stressfully at the watch to keep the eating window, that's not the way). Restrictions put even more pressure on us. When you feel free, everything will start to let go. Secondly: find yourself in the heart space and accept the current state. It is what it is, and you must accept it. For example: you want to stop eating eggs, but you keep coming back to them anyway. Stop fighting. Take note of this situation and accept it. Find in yourself the positive intention for which you want to make this change (stop eating eggs) in your life / diet. If you keep punishing yourself, blaming yourself for failing again, then you won't get very far from that level.
Let us remember that it is important that if we want to unlearn something to eat, we have to get rid of it from the house so that we are not tempted and not expose ourselves to situations in which we will have chocolate in the reach od our hands and nose (at least at the beginning). If the family wants to eat chocolate - go ahead, but outside the home.
We have an incredible amount of food-related programs that have been crammed into our heads over the years. For example: "I have to eat eggs because it's a vitamin hero", or "I have to prepare a full table of food for Christmas", or "I eat tomato soup because I associate its taste with childhood" and many others. Situations related to eating emotions or stress, or eating out of boredom or an evening movie, repeated for some time also become an addiction, a pattern that our mind will remember and activate when the opportunity comes. Being able to notice it, observe it, reject it, and visualize our intention in its place takes a long time, but it is extremely important in the process of breaking free from food as an addiction.
It is worth replacing old habits with new ones, for example, instead of evening snacking, let's read a book, take a walk or have sex with a partner. We need to distract us from thoughts about eating. Let them be and go. Don't resonate with them, don't give them meaning or break them up. You have to unlearn everything you have learned. The "Intuitive food" I wrote about on the blog comes in handy here. I strive to be free from food, in meaning to eat when I'm actually hungry, not when my mind wants to.
Let us remember, however, that you cannot fight the mind. You have to work with it, talk (literally) as with another person. The mind likes clear rules and when everything is written down - why not establish some basic rules of the game with the mind, so that it knows when is the green and when is the red light?
For example, we write down that we set an eating window in a specific time interval, or we specify to our mind where we can and where we cannot eat (for example, we eat only at the table, not at the desk, on the bed in the bedroom or on the armchair where we read a book in the evening. ).
My biggest food programm started always on when we went for holiday. Aw yes, then I let go of everything and I started to eat more cooked food, baked food, fried food, sometimes gluten as well. After holiday, it took some time untill everything came back to normal again. The good thing is that I am on the finish line of this programm, and it disapears effectively.
Remember that YOU control your mind, not the other way around. Make changes slowly, step by step. If you strive for raw food and eat mostly raw, but when you get hold of cooked food, you eat without restraint and move on to eat more, then you have moved too fast. Sometimes it's worth taking a few steps back in order to be able to move forward effectively. Give yourself space, freedom. Do not pigeonhole yourself in the labels because they limit you. Give yourself permission to eat something your mind craves once in a while. Don't demonize it. Let the mind know it can. That you don't take this pleasure from it forever. But let it be sporadic. Where there is no struggle, peace, understanding and changes begin.