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message 1: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (last edited Mar 05, 2010 07:29AM) (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I admit that I talk a lot about eating healthy, but I don't always succeed. My name is Kim and I am a food addict. There, I said it. I love food. I am an adult picky eater, and mostly vegetarian (although the list of veggies I don't like is longer than what I do). I think that changing the way that you see food is the hardest thing to do.

For me, for the longest time, food was a way of coping with my life. When I was 10, a friend of the family was murdered. He was the middle child of my mom's best friend. He and I were the same age. I saw my parents cry for the first time. My dad was a good one for threatening me with physical harm and I never knew when he would lose it and let me have it. It didn't happen often, and since this was the 70's, it wasn't abuse at the time. Now, it would be considered mental,emotional and physical. I was the tallest in my class, I was the biggest, and I was the first one to wear a bra (in the 3rd grade).

All of these things combined caused me to eat to hide my feelings, to give me a feeling of love, of companionship, of filling a void that I felt I had. Some of my feelings were of my own creation, some caused by my peers. I ate because I was fat, and I needed comfort. I had friends, but I was convinced at times that they were only my friends because they pittied me. (Not true)

Food was constant. It didn't judge, it didn't yell, or hit, or did anything to me but made me feel good. After the attempted rape, food gave me a lot of comfort because it gave me a sense of love. I ate, I felt good. I don't think that I over ate per-say, but I ate a lot of things that release seratonin, a natural anti-depressant. Food was and is still to a point, my drug of choice. I don't smoke, I have never taken anything stronger than as asprin, and I don't really drink (not a teatotaler, just don't do it).

So, that left and leaves food. I have been trying to change how I see food and I am making more serious effort to reach for healthy alternatives to junk and such. It's not easy, and some days, well let's just say that it's a good thing that there is always tomorrow to try again. I eat when I am bored, upset, hungry, etc.

They say the first step in getting help for a problem is admiting it. So, I have. I am working on it. It will never be a complete process, I need to eat to live so I can't exactly not be around people who eat, unlike a smoker/drinker/drug addict who are trying to quit and can avoid situations of tempation.

I am a work in progress. I will always be a work in progress.

I think I may re-teach myself how to see food,see it not as a friend, or an enemy, but as nutrition, and only as nutrition.

Maybe someday.

message 2: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (last edited May 24, 2010 10:43AM) (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I must also confess that I have been a secret eater in the past. I have known myself to eat something I shouldn't in a vast quantity and hide the evidence so nobody would know what I had done. Now, I wonder who I really was hiding that from. My friends, family or myself. I think it was that last one. I was ashamed of what I had done, and needed to hide it from myself. If I hid it, maybe it hadn't really happened.

Before I became more vegetarian (personal choice, not political), I ate fast food. I would eat 2 Big Macs, a large fry, and a large pop. I would eat 1/2 doz doughnuts in 1 sitting. Sometimes, this would be in 1 day, mostly not. I have tried in the past to change my eating habits, to try to lose weight, but I think that I had the wrong reasons. I would then become frustrated or something would happend in my personal life that would cause me to go back to the way I was.

I am trying to not do that anymore, but I did find myself indulging in a small secret eating moment last week. I ate 2 small fruit pies, and not the commercial kind that Hostess makes, but real fruit pies made by a local bakery that uses only fresh and organic products. (Only slightly healthier than all the fake stuff.) I bought them with the intention of sharing them. Never happened. By 2 that afternoon, they were gone. If food can taunt you, it does me. I have trouble with certain foods in or not in the house. It it's not there, I will obsess until I get it, if it's in the house, I'm not happy unless I'm eating it.

I do have a tendency to crave foods and eat them until I am sick of them. I obsess about certain things. I have trouble staying away from certain foods and restricting myself from eating too much of them. I know I am not alone in this, that others have secretly eaten in the past and still do, that others have beaten the food craving obsession and have survived.

I'm trying. My name is Kim, and I am a food addict, and I am trying to get better, 1 day at a time.

message 3: by Paul (new)

Paul (merman1967) | 228 comments I am right there with you. And I really feel that it is one of the hardest addictions to confront because you do not NEED cigarettes to live. You do not NEED alcohol to live. You do not NEED drugs to live. You DO need to eat to live, and the psychological and physiological changes that happen with the consumption of food can be very profound, so yes indeed it is an addiction.

message 4: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (last edited May 24, 2010 10:44AM) (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
How many times is food tied to events in our lives? Birthdays, weddings, funerals, graduations, re-unions, or hollidays? We are tied to food from the get go, having enough, how we feel when we eat, etc. Add all of that up, add stress, hardship, etc. and you have the ingredients for stress eating, compulsive eating, emotional eating, etc. How do you stop from falling into that trap when you need food to survive?

Again, it is something that I am working on and hopefully one day, I'll get to the place where food is just food and not a friend.

message 5: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I saw an ad at my library the other day for a program that has been inspired by Recovery, a 12 step programs for addicts. They have now modified it for people with food addictions. I am thinking about going to a meeting and seeing what they are about. It's free all the time.

Maybe it is the next step I need.....

message 6: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (last edited Sep 03, 2010 07:18AM) (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
Went to rfa website at They are based in a nearby suburb,and there is no fee. I read over the mission statement, I and I do not feel that it is for me at this time. They belive that there are foods that are as addictive as drugs or alchol and I do agree with that idea. I, however, and not ready to change my diet so drastically yet. Since I am a veagetarian already, to follow what I belive they would suggest (since one thing they list is wheat) I would have to give up my whole grain breads and pasta which I enjoy. Giving up doughnuts, coissants, and the like probably wouldn't hurt.

That's where I agree some foods can be addictive since those are the things that I go for if I tell meyself "never again!", because, sure enough days or weeks later, there I am chowing down on way too many of whatever it was.

Maybe this in not the group for me. I am going to see where the nearest Overeaters Annonymous is and look into that. Maybe that's the next step I need.

message 7: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (last edited Feb 07, 2013 07:21AM) (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I was flipping stations yesterday and I saw a clip of a show that I found interesting. This larger teen, who I later found out is 324, was sitting in her car eating fast food as fast as she could. Then, she hid the bag, with many others,under a coat, so that no one would see her throwing away the bags in public.

That could have been me I was watching.

I have mentioned before that I have had those days and I still do. I am *trying* to be healthy, but I feel like I am in a losing battle here. Sometimes it's depression, PMS, life or other things that cause me stress that make me what to eat EVERYTHING in site. It is so easy to revert back to old behaviors because they are comforting.

This time of year is hard for me. The weather changes, the Halloween candy is out (smaller fun sizes so you can eat MORE!)and the subsequent holiday season is hard for me to deal with because of the food. I guess this is whatever-anonymous' are all about. The Serenity Prayer and all that. It is about what I can change and what I can't. Some days it just seems easier not to fight it. See, this is why a diet is not something you are on (it's not a bicycle) but what you eat. That should be an easy fix, right?

It is getting your brain to see it that way that is the problem. Your brain controls addiction. We are born craving sugar because sugar meant life saving calories,and bitter meant poison (most of the time). Sometimes cravings are your body's way of telling you you need something, like craving peanutbutter may be that you need protein.

So what?

This is the hard part. Letting go of the shame that comes with going off your diet, of feeling the need to just eat 6 doughnuts and be done with it. We have all had the looks in public the "you're eating THAT?" looks. So, we are taught shame about food. We seek out those feelings of comfort that food has given us over the years. Sometimes family and loved ones sabotage you out of fear or ignorance. Fear that if you change,you will leave them behind. Sometimes we sabotage ourselves because we are afraid of who we are if we are not the "fat one".

Food has been my friend for a long time. It didn't yell, hit,make me feel bad, feel ugly,stupid. It doesn't make me feel like a burden, or a loser who can't get a job, or feel bad for being fat. I have hidden and still do hide behind food because I am afraid. I am afraid of never working again, of being alone, of dying young because I can't seem to get my act together and get healthy once and for all.

Maybe some day, perhaps sooner than later, I will FINALLY get the help I need, either through my own volition, or through Over Eaters Anonymous. I may have reached my point where I need help, I don't know. I have my good days and my bad. It just seems that lately the bad ones are winning. Maybe someday I will not have any bad ones and my secret eating will be a thing of the past.

I look forward to that day.

I hope it's soon.

message 8: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I was reading an article today about picky eaters and how to handle them. It was suggested that parents not fall into the "here eat this so you eat something" trap vs. the authoritarian trap of "you will eat what is front of you.Period" and finding a middle ground. Now, I watch kids and know how this goes. Sometimes it's a texture thing, sometimes flavor, other times somebody at school made a comment or started a rumor about a certain food. It's a phase that kids (mostly) out grow.

One of the suggestions was eating as family, which you should be doing anyway, as this may help kids with so much, including fighting obesity. They are finding that children with parents who are authoritarian in their approach, regardless of family meal time or no, have higher A-1C levels than kids who are in a more relaxed setting.

Where was this study when I was a kid? Not that my dad would have paid much attention to it,but still.... My dad grew up in rural Ohio,and my grandpa (whom I did not know, he passed when I was 2)was of the mind that you eat what is on the table or you don't eat. There are foods to this day I will not eat or am not thrilled about eating due to my dad's attitude on food. If it was on your plate, you ate it. If you were at a buffet or group setting, eat what you take. So this has led to me hating eggs (I got a big spanking for not liking hard boiled eggs and not wanting to finish it one Easter), and strawberries are another thing I'm not crazy about, due to a childhood allergy and another spanking for not wanting to finish a strawberry that tastes nasty. (It was in front of me, so I had to eat it.) There have been other foods that I developed a loathing for, some for what they are, others for bad experiences associated with the food, and I have never tried them again.

I try really hard with my charges to give them a choice. I only ask that they try it before they decide they don't like something. I know there are veggies they don't like, but mom and dad insist that I give them to the child, so I make a deal with the kids for x number of bites,then I cut up a larger portion of the veggie into the agreed number of bites. It works pretty well. I am not above using cheese, ketchup or giving them "dip" (i.e ranch dressing or the like) to get them to eat. I don't drown the food or smother it, just enough to make them think they are getting away with something.

So, does the picky eater stage lead to over eating later in life? Possibly, depending on how it was handled. Food is emotion made real. How many memories are stored in food? Too many.

Maybe I'll try an egg, someday.

message 9: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (last edited Feb 07, 2013 06:48AM) (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I read, well sort of read, a new book yesterday. I say sort of read, because I got the "hear my self roars" that may self-help books get and I got bored and flipped to the actual 3 step plan in the book. "The Hunger Fix" by Pam Peete, M.D. is a 3 step version of a 12 step program for good addicts. First off, the doctor herself is a recovering food addict, and does not limit food addiction to size. She is mostly size friendly (in the parts I actually read) and offers sound advice on how to recognize binge foods, foods that are healthier "thrill" foods (my term) and is realistic on her length of time that each of the 3 steps may take. I respect that.

While the book is not for me at this point and time, it may be worth a second read, an actual read every word and fight the boredom type of second read. Perhaps I got bored because I am not ready to follow the book or perhaps since I am already aware of my triggers, binge foods and am working on avoidance, I don't need as much help as I thought.

Perhaps,I am in need of more help and this book will prove to be the help I need when I am ready for it down the road.

message 10: by Kim, Proud Queen of the Fat and Fabulous! (new)

Kim (MrsNesbitt) | 1031 comments Mod
I was reading a fiction book not too long ago in which a character owned a healthy gourmet/take out style eatery. She was a food addict herself and saw this place as a way to help others be healthy and help keep her self on track. She has a food coach (for lack of a better term) who had helped her with her food problems. Under a lot of stress she ended up eating food that she shouldn't and later on craved food she didn't need to be eating. The food coach gave her some advice that surprised me, but I get the feeling that the author had really gone through this, so it rang true.

She was told to got get the food (cupcakes in this case) in any flavor or amount that she wished. Then, she was to eat slowly and with purpose, enjoying every bite, and them quit when full. This was a good way to binge without binging. You got to satisfy the craving/stress reflex without blowing every bit of work you had been doing.

It has had me thinking about binge foods and how I react to those binge foods. I have begun to rank foods based on "mega high', "high", "medium", "low", and "not a problem". Mega high are foods like Pringles that I cannot leave alone until I see dust,which means a can lasts less than 24 hours. High are things like Barbara's Bakery Baked White Cheddar Puffs which last about 24 hours or so if I'm really good,which is hard to accomplish as they are very tasty. (These were hard to find at one point as we only had one healthy grocery store at the time, and if the east side location didn't carry it, then the west side one didn't either, which may have led to their high status)

Medium status is for things like Garden Salsa Sun Chips that if they are out of the room for storage after opening,like in the kitchen and I'm in the den. If I fail to put the bag away, I will keep picking at it until they are gone.

Low are ones that while I crave it, I can leave it alone. Really good dark chocolate, pizza, and the like usually are things that I can make last for weeks (in the case of pizza, I freeze it, so it's out of immediate range) Chocolate can move to medium, but that is usually during high stress or PMS, so it's temporary.

Not a problem is obviously.

So what does this mean?

Mega high means I try my best not to buy it or have it around so that I'm not tempted and same with high, although that does not always work as I am human. I have tried a new thing lately, when the impulse to obtain a mega high item, is to put it into my cart, walk around with it for a while and then put it back. I will tell myself that the cart is full of things I need so I can't afford this item right now. It seems to work most of the time, but I have slipped.

I am learning to try the eat with purpose method and forgiving myself for when I do slip up, as opposed to beating myself up, feeling guilty and giving up entirely on any efforts to control what goes into my mouth.

Food has been a false friend to me for so long now,that trying to leave it behind is hard. I think it is harder than exercising and that is saying a lot. It is so easy for others to tell you to lose weight by counting your calories or just eat healthy options instead, but the siren song of a Boston Cream Doughnut is sometime stronger.

Is my system perfect? No. Is it working? It's a work in progress like me. I have my good days and bad like anyone else. The new trick is,not letting it hold me back, but push me forward.

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