Western experts say: it's time to consider the psychological dependence on food, or rather the goodies that beckon us from the windows of the gastronomic and culinary departments, along with alcohol, nicotine and even drug addiction. Is the problem really that serious? Why are such frightening terms used: "dependence", "slavery"? After all, it's just about the food!
Food Addiction: The Roots of the Problem
The problem is that modern man's food has lost its original purpose: satisfying the body's physiological needs for nutrients. There are a lot of reasons for this, and they come from antiquity. For thousands of years, "satiation" was perceived as a sign of social status and wealth. And only during the last century, with the development of food technology, the inhabitants of entire countries were able to eat to their fullest. It would seem - it's wonderful! But a paradox arose: in modern people, physical activity and energy consumption have decreased, and the number of calories consumed has increased. As a result, several generations of people appeared, including our peers, who are overweight or even obese.
At first glance, this is not a problem: after all, following elementary logic, it is enough to reduce the number of calories and those extra pounds will disappear. Alas, everything is not so simple! Because in addition to the physiological role, food has acquired a lot of other statuses and functions. Today, food is an indispensable attribute of communication, family holidays and a sign of hospitality. Some food products become "fashionable", "glamorous", with their help it is advised to relieve stress, tension and use them as aphrodisiacs. And since they are now available out of season and out of place, food has become dangerous. We very often eat in order to eat, and not in order to get enough. And we become addicted to food.
Are you addicted to food? Test
It is possible to see the signs of addiction in the early stages. There are certain "diagnostic signs", so it's easy to test yourself. If you notice three or more symptoms in yourself, this is cause for alarm, because bulimia is not far off!
- Predilection for both sweet and fatty foods (chocolate and cream pies).
- Compulsive overeating under stress - food helps to calm down.
- Quick meal (eating hastily).
- Eating "for the company" (forced food) in the absence of hunger or appetite.
- Consuming food to the point where there is a feeling of a very full stomach.
- "Bouts" of overeating occur at least twice a week or more often.
- Feelings of guilt that appear after an attack of gluttony.
Food addiction: not to be confused with appetite!
Appetite and hunger are very complex reflexes. And if in a newborn they are regulated according to a relatively simple scheme: a deficiency in blood glucose levels / a satiety center of the brain / a feeling of hunger, in adulthood a lot of other “layers” are superimposed on it. Among them are the appearance, smell of food, advertising slogans and bright packaging, memories of how good it was after tasting the product, etc., etc. Therefore, we can say that addiction is more of a psychological nature. That is why it is very difficult to deal with it, and one desire to “stop eating” is not enough.
Of course, you can give yourself the appropriate order "do not eat." Only most often such a decision visits us while relaxing on the couch after a hearty dinner. Several hours pass, a day and the body urgently begins to demand food. After all, the very process of eating accompanies the release of hormones of happiness - endorphins. If they are absent or not enough, we feel unhappy, crushed, or vice versa, irritated. After all, the brain is deprived of its usual substances and begins to “strike”. Indeed, on any diet you feel that way!
Food addiction: what to do?
After all, if we proceed from the fact that a person has become addicted to cakes and custards due to circumstances/family traditions/nervous work/etc, it seems very difficult to simply stop eating them. It's almost impossible to stop! This is the main reason for the ineffectiveness of strict diets, such a terrible emotional state during the diet, and the return of weight to the "initial" numbers after it is over. Even if you managed to get rid of 3-5-8 extra pounds, after returning to your usual diet, they will definitely return. And it’s good if they don’t double, which happens very often! It looks like there is no way out...
But, of course, there is a way out! Let's go in order. First: you decide for yourself that you really want to lose weight. Here everyone will find arguments and suitable methods for themselves - diets, consultations of psychologists and nutritionists, fitness, yoga ... Then you must understand what is really real weight loss. By which they mean a stable and confident decrease in body weight and keeping it in a certain size, it cannot be a one-day process. A nutritionist will not promise “10 kg in 10 days” to any of his patients! After all, in order to learn how to independently maintain weight in the right parameters, you need to develop new eating habits, learn to eat the way, then and then, as your body needs it.
And most importantly - you need to get rid of food addiction gradually. A piece of rye bread with a teaspoon of honey and a glass of milk will bring much more benefit to your body than a cake with cream. And in order for it to cease to be a forbidden fruit, you need to get used to “not wanting” it step by step.