Food addiction involves a compulsive need to consume food despite its unnecessary and negative consequences. While food is a universal source of pleasure and sustenance, food addiction can lead to distress and harm.
Often misunderstood and mislabeled as a lack of self-control or greed, food addiction is a complex issue that requires understanding and proper treatment. This page will delve into the causes of food addiction, available treatment options, and how to seek help for this condition.
How Does a Food Addiction Develop?
Like all behavioural addictions, a food addiction develops due to several reasons. Often, the food groups that people with this condition gravitate towards have a powerful effect on the brain’s reward centres, such as highly processed foods high in sugar, salt and fat. These foods interact with the dopamine levels in your brain, similar to the way drugs and alcohol do. This makes it difficult to give them up.
People often turn to food in times of stress as a relief. This is because the temporary feel-good feelings from eating provide short-lived relief from any pain or stress they may be experiencing. That’s why somebody who has experienced or is experiencing pain, trauma, or severe stress is at higher risk of developing a food addiction.
It is also known that some people can be more susceptible to addictive personalities than others, which can be inherited, so there may also be a genetic component to food addiction.
Am I Addicted to Food?
Recognising when you have lost control over your eating can be difficult to pinpoint. People with this addiction have often lost touch with their hunger and satiation signals. This means it’s not always clear whether you are eating out of hunger or something else entirely.
Some indicators that your relationship with food has become strained and you may be living with a dependency are:
- Fixating on specific foods or kinds of food
- Eating a quantity of food that makes you physically uncomfortable or sick afterwards
- Eating despite not feeling hungry
- Eating in secret
- Being preoccupied with obtaining certain foods
- Experiencing problems at work or school due to eating
- Isolating yourself
- Buying very high quantities of food
- Experiencing energy problems and sugar spikes
- Having trouble paying attention or staying focused
- Sleep problems
- Gastrointestinal issues
- Sudden weight changes
Some of these symptoms could also indicate other mental and physical health conditions. So, if any of these resonate with you, please seek help and get in contact with us today.
What can I expect from food addiction rehab?
In rehab, you will receive professional support and guidance to address the underlying factors contributing to your food addiction and develop strategies to regain control over your eating habits.
Food addiction rehab at Oasis Bradford typically includes:
Our rehab programme aims to address any underlying emotional, psychological, or trauma-related issues that may encourage your food addiction by using dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT) that includes a cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) approach allowing you to identify and change unhealthy behaviours related to your food addiction.
At Oasis Bradford, we use a variety of approaches to help treat food addiction. These include:
Holistic approaches promote mindfulness, self-awareness, and emotional regulation, making it a valuable tool for managing and enhancing awareness of triggers and behaviours related to food addiction.
After your food addiction rehab programme, it can be triggering to re-enter the normalcy of everyday life. Oasis Bradford provides aftercare to enable the support you need through this transition is readily available via continuous therapy sessions and support groups.
Approaching rehab for your food addiction
Food addiction is multi-layered, as physical, psychological, and social factors contribute to it. At Oasis Bradford, we understand that re-establishing a healthy routine around food and reducing your consumption of highly addictive foods is not easy and battling addiction can be incredibly isolating, but we are here to help you.
If you are ready to break free from the grip of food addiction and transform your life, get in touch with us at Oasis Bradford. We can help you invest in your well-being and take that courageous step towards recovery.