Is there really such a thing as a Food Addiction?
I know from my academic studies of addiction that there are basically 5 addictions:
1) Drugs and alcohol, 2) Sex, 3) Gambling, 4) Work, and 5) Food.
Here’s where I might be nit-picky, but I’m trying to make a point:
People who are food addicts will often report that once the start eating they can’t stop. I question that. I know that I am a sugar addict. I know that once I start eating sugar (or something that turns to sugar), I struggle to stop. But refined sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners are not foods. They are man-made drugs packaged in such a way that society accepts them as food.
I doubt very much that anyone is addicted to broccoli, kale, apples, grass-fed meat, avocados, or basically anything on a Paleo, or other diet that eliminates sugar, refined carbohydrates, food additives, or any of the other drugs or drug-like “foods” that people crave.
People who feel they are food addicts crave, jones for, and can’t stop eating, sugar, cookies, macaroni, soda, Doritos, pizza, ……the list is endless, but it certainly doesn’t include fresh vegetables, fruits, seeds and nuts (unless chocolate-covered), healthy meats and fats.
The argument has been well-made in books such as Wheat Belly and Grain Brain (be watching for my new book, Bun Buns), by medical doctors, that the wheat that we consume today, even before it is processed to eliminate the healthy bran and germ, has been severely genetically modified. By the time we eat it it is no longer a healthy, God-given, food, but rather a drug-like chemical that proves to be highly addictive, inflammatory, and gums up our bodies.
Because these non-foods are like drugs, it is very difficult for people to get off of them with out going cold-turkey and making the lifestyle choice (perhaps only by the grace of God, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the blood of Jesus!) to completely eliminate them – FOREVER. We can not take the “everything in moderation” approach, or the “cheat day” approach. These concepts don’t work in people battling drug and alcohol addiction and they don’t work in people battling “food addiction.”
Okay, my main point is not to say that there isn’t such a thing as a food addict. By definition, I IS One. But while you will never find me in the gutter clutching a piece of roasted broccoli cooked in coconut oil with roasted garlic and sea salt….. if I get off my game, you will find an empty bag of Doritos and a Hostess fruit pie wrapper, hidden in my back seat. THEY ARE DRUGS. THEY ARE NOT FOOD.