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Are You Addicted to Food?

I was busy as always writing strategies for people's relationship with food, and then something dawned on me. For some of you, it's not just about "Hey, cut back on your portions," or "Just eat real and living food." What about "stay away from fast food and nuked food"? My list of do's and don'ts is a block long, but in a lot of cases, it's not that simple.

Food is a drug, and a lot of us are addicted to it. We get stressed, we reach for a donut to soothe our souls. Lonely? Pizza is a warm companion. Feeling bad about ourselves? Ice cream eases the pain. It's a fact that the craving for sugar affects our brain the same way the need for heroin does. No wonder we turn to food — it's legal, we can use it in public, and it's relatively cheap.

If you've tried everything to conquer your food addiction and it's not happening, then it's time to try a new strategy. We don't expect alcoholics to "get over it" on their own. Bulimia and anorexia are classified as diseases for a reason. So why do we think we can throw a list of foods at someone and expect them to deal with it by themselves?

First, you have to acknowledge that you don't have the will power on your own. The cravings and callings are bigger then you (for now). What can you do about it? Get help. Go see a doctor or nutritionist that will put you on a program. This is not about failure or being a bad person, this is about finding a way to get healthy and strong. Nothing else. Beating yourself up is not going to do anything. Love yourself enough to feel you deserve a little help.

Your program should include checking in with someone weekly and having someone you can talk to daily if you need to. I mean, how long have 12-step programs been around? When alcoholics get sober, they still go to meetings. It maybe something you have to deal with for the rest of your life, and that's OK. Remember, it's about staying healthy. Getting clean and staying clean. In this instance, clean doesn't mean giving up the Jack Daniels, it's about stepping away from the burgers and fries (and milkshakes).

Once you start this process, you must commit to it! Even when it's difficult, keep your eyes on the goal and don't look back. We're all human, and we all evolve. This doesn't mean we're perfect — it means we work on improving every day. So stop being hard on yourself and do something to make a difference in someone's life who matters — YOURS.

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