Did you know that sugar might be as addictive as drugs? Foods that contain the right mixture of sugar, fat, and salt can light up our brain reward centres and perhaps even make us into addicts. The world is full of these foods so it’s important to know how to resist them and how to cut them out if necessary.

If there is a strong stimulus that makes your brain reward centre produce a lot of neurotransmitters like dopamine, it can change how you behave. You start craving that stimulus again, more often, and in higher quantities. And it doesn’t have to be a drug, highly processed foods can do the same thing. If you have a good restful sleep, nutritious meals, daily movement, healthy relationships, a meaningful job, and lots of laughter and play in your life, there’s very little chance you can become a food addict. But if one or more of these things are missing, you might start compensating with junk food and that could be the beginning of food addiction.

My Advice: Don’t be afraid to ask for help

If you feel like a certain food makes you lose control and you overeat every time, yet you can’t seem to cut it out of your diet on your own, ask for help. It can be as simple as asking your family or the people you live with not to bring it home and hold you accountable for not eating it. If that approach is not possible or fails, you should turn to an experienced nutritionist or better yet, a lifestyle coach that can help you come up with realistic a plan. If that’s still not enough, go to a doctor or get referred to a psychologist who specializes in addiction. Food addiction can have serious health consequences if left unchecked.

In this series, we will look at some useful tips for breaking food addiction on your own. If you follow our advice you should have a good toolkit for quitting sugar or any junk food you’re struggling with. You can test how knowledgeable you are about food addiction in our quiz.

1/5

Can this person be a food addict?

2/5

Will this breakfast reduce cravings throughout the day?

3/5

Would most people find this food addictive?

4/5

Can poor sleep make you a food addict?

5/5

Would most people find this food addictive?

Results

50%
Correct
7/10
50%
Wrong
3/10

Next up in Breaking Food Addiction series

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