As a person who has extensive experience with addiction, it’s become horrifyingly clear to me that eating food – is yet another thing that many of us are addicted to. Once you spot the hooks, it’s not even subtle – it’s as clear as day.
Now don’t feel bad if this is you – clearly it’s me too – which is why I’m writing this post. I only ever write about what I experience firsthand.
Before I go any further, let me tell you how much of a grip food addiction often has on me. The day I wrote this post, I was feeling light from intermittent fasting. I was disciplined and strong. The day I’m editing it? Right now? I’m not disciplined or strong. I’m full of carbs. This is other me.
I just ate a huge bowl of vegan ravioli with pesto for second breakfast, accompanied by a giant sourdough bread roll and a whole baked oat cake (which was meant to last all week). And I wasn’t even close to hungry. And guess what? After that I ate lunch too.
This post is not to get you to stop your addiction to eating TODAY – or EVER if you don’t want to. It’s about bringing awareness to this sneaky addiction, so that you can observe it in your own life, and when you’re ready, get to the root cause of WHY this compulsive behaviour exists.
There’s a golden key to raising your frequency hidden in the answer to ‘why’ – and this key accesses yet another door to leveling up in the game.
An addiction to eating is actually no different than using drugs or alcohol (and if it's junk food, it's not any healthier either).
Lately I’ve been observing myself eating – not because I’m hungry or need the nutrition – because I don’t. I notice I’m compelled to eat when I’m stressed, or bored. I often eat as a distraction, or I do it to avoid something. I also eat for pleasure.
Exactly the same reasons I used to use addiction for. EXACTLY. How horrifying is that? Old me fell deep into addiction as a means to cope with emotions I couldn’t deal with. It helped me avoid them, and it distracted me enough to keep them buried – for a time. Then it exploded like an A-bomb and incinerated my world.
When I hit my rock bottom in 2016 and moved into my sister’s house, I stopped some of my addictions straight away (like smoking meth and smoking bongs. Alcohol and gambling took longer), but a new addiction formed: an addiction to eating. I ate everything and I put on 13 kilos in 6 months.
Eating became a distraction from my overwhelming horror at what had become of my life. I couldn’t eat enough. My nephew’s snack shelf in the kitchen cupboard was beckoning to me all day. I’d open a 12 pack of chips and eat one pack, then instead of telling my sister I ate a pack of my nephew’s chips (who wouldn’t have cared at all), I’d eat the other 11 packets, and buy a new one like nothing had happened.
When I was stuffing my face, I wasn’t feeling my feelings. And I needed a lot of distraction to keep those buggers away from me.
Like all addictions, NONE of them actually help resolve anything. They actually create an extra problem, while doing nothing to solve the root cause of why we engage in this behaviour in the first place.
The reason I’m so interested this right now, is for three main reasons:
– Because so many of us are stuck in the grip of this socially acceptable addiction. If you know me, understanding addiction is one of my weird hobbies.
– Because it’s making us sick. An addiction to processed food, fast food and junk food is literally poisoning us. I’ve mentioned before how two of my grandparents died from diet-related illnesses (diabetes complications). I also spend way too much time in a cancer hospital where my Mum has chemo, and many cancers are caused by our diet and lifestyle. So yeah, the subject is personal. It pisses me off because our society normalizes this slow poison from a young age, and the physical disease and suffering it often creates is completely avoidable. I think about this a lot. Earth is such a crazy (and highly entertaining) place where so much shit is upside down and we think it’s normal. IT’S WILD.
Food is our medicine, or our poison.
– THE BIG REASON. It’s blocking us emotionally and spiritually. It’s distracting us from looking at something deeper. We are avoiding something. We are suppressing something. The exact same reason that addicts use drugs, alcohol, gambling, gaming, exercise and the whopping list of the rest of them.
It often pops up due to an inability to sit with uncomfortable emotions, old traumas, or programs rooted in fear, lack of self-love or low self-worth.
These root causes I mention, are often hidden in the shadows of the subconscious mind – away from our conscious awareness. We may not even know that they’re there. We do however learn behaviors to keep them suppressed so they stay away from us. Addiction, distraction, avoidance, busyness etc – are those kinds of behaviours.
The compulsion to eat something also regularly pops in as a form of distraction and procrastination when I’m trying to step into any kind of positive CHANGE – when I’m trying anything new that can lead to my expansion. Like when I know I should exercise. Or write a page of my journal. It pops in when I know I should meditate.
I often get the compulsion to eat when I’m doing something where I feel a little out of my depth. Like writing a post, or recording a video. And this procrastination or distraction – is rooted in fear. I’m trying to avoid doing something because some part of me doesn’t think I can do it.
I also notice sometimes I’ll eat a lot of ‘comfort foods’ after coming back from the hospital. I do this as some kind of emotional distraction from fully sitting with the suffering I see at the hospital.
I’m really good with sitting with ALL my feelings now – but deep down, on some days, the compulsion for distraction still appears for a short period of time. If this was old me though? These are the days I’d get really high or drunk as fast as I could.
When I’m in a fasting window, pings to EAT go off all the bloody time, even when I’m definitely NOT hungry.
And this is where I can explore the most. When you’re not fasting you just eat. You give in to the craving. When you’re fasting or abstaining – you don’t. And now you can look at why. I got very curious to know, what’s compelling me to eat if it’s not hunger? What am I feeling? What’s the discomfort sitting underneath there? Get into the shadows of what is hiding there, and dismantle it.
When I come face to face with it and pull it apart, it almost always has a root of fear.
I suggest this to you: Take little fasting breaks and step into observer mode. And when the compulsion pings you to eat something, self-inquire. Are you hungry? If not, what is triggering you to eat? Follow the thread. Do the shadow work. Learn more about yourself. Free yourself.
You’ll find that often compulsive eating is masking low frequency programs and behaviours that only you can clear to raise your frequency. Claim your key and access the next level of the game.