19 May Breaking The Emotional Connection with Food
I have discussed in the past how as addicts in recovery we have to be careful not to trade one addiction for another, and how exercise is great unless it becomes an unhealthy addiction. Food is another addiction that we have to be wary of. We are used to stuffing our feelings down with drugs and alcohol, but when we no longer have those outlets sometimes food becomes our new drug of choice.
We have to learn to not self-medicate with food, to look at food as nourishment and not comfort-we have to make an effort not to ‘eat our feelings’. In the US especially we have a hard time with differentiating food from feelings. We even have specific foods that we describe as “comfort foods”, and generally speaking those foods are carb-filled, greasy, or sugary; mac and cheese, pizza, donuts…foods that may give us momentary “comfort” but then induce sugar crashes, indigestion, and feelings of guilt. Binging and overeating is incredibly common-and leads not only to all sorts of physical ailments but contributes to depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses as well.
We have to retrain our minds to look at food as something that our bodies need to function rather than something that temporarily fixes how we feel. Remove the emotions connected to foods. Obviously this is easier said than done, but just by being more aware of the feelings you have around your food is a step in the right direction!
Sober since 2007, Maya is a mother, wife, and writer for the lifestyle blog ‘My Life As Maya‘. She is also a freelance writer and resident contributor for several other blogs in the fashion, fitness and parenting spheres.