Food addiction is an eating disorders, which primarily include anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. Although anorexia, bulimia and food addiction are addressed to some extent apart from each other, they intersect in various domains. Therefore, to have the whole picture, it is recommended to investigate all three disorders, rather than dwell on just one of them. In addition, the same people at different times in their lives suffer from different type of eating disorders.
Food addiction differs from bulimia in that it is not followed cleansing processes. Because of this, people suffering from this eating disorder are often gaining excess weight or obese. However, not necessarily.
As is the case with other eating disorders (anorexia and bulimia), people suffering food addiction experience reduced self-esteem, a sense of lack of control of what is happening, and often feel helpless. At least half of people with this disorder occasionally feel overwhelmed and depressed.
They note that the episodes of gluttony occur during the change of their mood, especially when they experience irritation, anger, sadness, anxiety, frustration, or other difficulties in life.
Psychologists and doctors say that for many food addicted people there is common patter of the behavior and the way they express emotions, including alcohol abuse, impulsive behavior (people with fast response, often acting rashly), and such people do not feel responsible for themselves and their actions.
Overeating itself if it does not affect the person, is not dangerous. However, people with food addiction usually become depressed. They are subjected to stress more likely than others, they often have difficulty sleeping, and they are prone to suicidal thoughts. Such people often feel bad, and because of this, they often lose their jobs, refuse to study, and do not an active social position.
Furthermore, it is obvious that such addiction is unhealthy for the body and carries an additional burden – the body works continuously, almost without rest. This results in a disease associated with obesity, cardiovascular disease, metabolic disease, and increased risk of diabetes, arthritis, and other diseases.
Food addiction is very serious disease, which demands professional help from psychiatrists, psychologists, or psychotherapists.
To date, there are several treatment options for this disorder. Such as psychotherapy and the body-oriented therapy to help regulate emotions, exercise in combination with psychotherapy, as well as support groups.
Some people react positively to medication therapy, such as antidepressants or a series of drugs that reduce emotional outbursts. They certainly do not solve the causes of overeating, but help in particularly critical cases.
Sometimes, people with such an eating disorder suffer from obesity, that is why they have to resort to surgery to surgically remove excess fat. Of course, so they reduce the weight of the body, but it does not solve their internal problems, often causing their weight returning after a while.
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