Why Food Addiction is a “Disease” of the Mind

Authored or posted by | Updated on | Published on May 14, 2015
Cherry Chocolate Ice Cream

Image credit: flickr.com/photos/stevendepolo/4605024313/

Food addiction is a psychological disorder that causes us to behave in a way that is hard for us to resist food. A century ago, food addiction was a minor health problem, even in families that had money to buy an abundance of food. Today, food addiction has become such a major health issue that nearly every family has someone who has a food addiction problem.

How do we get addicted to a certain food? A food addiction often starts during our early childhood years. There are many things that can cause us to be addicted to a certain food. One of the common things is pleasure. For example, during your early childhood, you may have discovered that when your parents are screaming and yelling at each other, turning to eating ice cream makes you feel better.

After many times of relying on ice cream to make you feel better, it becomes a subconscious behavior. In other words, your mind has been conditioned or programmed to eat ice cream for pleasure. As a result, when you experience certain negative emotions, your mind automatically stimulates your body to crave for ice cream. This is why food addiction is like a disease of the mind.

People with extreme food addiction generally rely on food to solve many of their emotional problems. Unfortunately, turning to food to solve emotional problems often leads to other health issues, such as obesity, mental breakdown, and low self-esteem.

Why food is hard to resist

Food is something that we need to survive, but if we are not careful, it can lead to an addiction that can destroy our health. Back in the early 1900s, food addiction was a rare problem. Nowadays, it is becoming a pandemic due to the availability of junk food.

One of the main reasons why junk food is so addictive is because it triggers the release of the chemical dopamine in the brain. Dopamine plays a critical role in the function of the central nervous system. However, too much of it can lead to food addiction because it is a chemical that makes you feel good. This is why dopamine has been linked to many other addictions, including drug and alcohol addiction.

The first and most important step to break food addiction is to recognize and accept that you have a problem. The second step is to take action by seeking help from family members, friends, and food addiction experts.

Three effective tips to overcome food addiction

Addiction, whether it has to do with food or not, is basically a misunderstanding of the desires that make you temporarily happy. When you do not understand your desires or are not aware of them, it is easy for your ego to make you addicted to these desires.

Here are three effective tips to help you understand and overcome your food addiction:

Breaking food addiction tip #1: Learn to manage your stress

Stress is your body’s way of responding to certain unpleasant things. Experiencing stress every now and then is fine, but when you have too much stress, it can cause your body to produce too many anti-stress chemicals, causing chemical imbalance. This can lead to depression and other psychological disorders.

When you are in a state of stress, your mind likes to look for certain things to counter it. Junk food is often one of them because it causes your brain to release dopamine. This process can help reduce the effects of stress. However, relying on food to help you cope with stress often leads to other problems. Because of this, if you want to learn how to stop food addiction, you need to reduce stress as much as possible.

For some effective tips to manage stress, read this article titled Stress and Anxiety Symptoms: How They Drain Your Energy.

Breaking food addiction tip #2: Take control of your emotions

Your emotions play a big role in how you behave and thus it can help you overcome food addiction. When it comes to food, your emotions can act like magnetic forces that push you to eat food that you know is not good for you.

We all have experience a moment when we see our favorite junk food at a store and our emotions automatically take over our decision making process, causing us to unconsciously take the action to purchase the junk food. By learning how to take control of your emotions or becoming more aware of them, you can prevent your emotions from causing you to make a bad decision.

To learn how to control your emotions better, you need to know what they are. This empowering article about emotions will explain what emotions are and their powers.

Breaking food addiction tip #3: Turn off the TV

When you watch your favorite shows on TV, pay attention to the commercials and you should see that nearly half of them are related to junk food. Many of these food commercials contain food-related subliminal messages that are designed to stimulate your appetite at the subconscious level.

A subliminal message is information that is created for the purpose of stimulating or reprogramming your subconscious mind. It is often used in a way that negatively affects your mind. Subliminal messages are hard for the conscious mind to detect. However, the subconscious mind has no problem detecting them.

Because the conscious mind has a hard time detecting subliminal messages, they are great to use for manipulating your thoughts and behaviors without your knowledge. If subliminal messages did not work, do you think companies would spend millions of dollars per year to incorporate them in ads?

Here is an interesting short video that does a great job of explaining how subliminal messages are used in advertising:

Subliminal Sex Messages – Disney Cartoons & Advertisements

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Category: Chronic Disease & Health Condition

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  1. indi says:

    Psychiatrists also claim that someone who eats responsibly has a mental problem. When our food is processed and depleted of nutrients, our body looks for ways to compensate this deficiëncy by eating more. Eating more empty calories and proteïns that harm the lining of your gut is obviously not the way. Live food can bring about a change within 4 weeks. Stop using wheat in any form, no sugar or hfcs, no artificial sweeteners, no bad oils and transfats! Eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, drink green tea and clean water. Food addiction is caused by the foodindustry and not by a diseased mind.