Can Food Be An Addiction?

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Can Food Be An Addiction?

We often hear about substance use addictions, such as drug or alcohol addictions. We even hear about gambling addictions or sexual addictions. What is often not spoken about as much is an addiction to food. The National Institute of Health says that food addiction involves “binge eating behavior, cravings, and a lack of control around foods.” There are many symptoms of a food addiction. Here are a few:

Binge eating behavior

Binge eating involves eating large amounts of food in a short period of time. The individual may have trouble eating around other people because of their binge eating behavior. In order to binge eat, the individual may stash food and move their schedule around in order to be able to binge eat. These abnormal eating patterns cause someone to develop a food addiction.   


Everyone gets cravings from time to time. For people with a food addiction, however, their cravings are to the point where they cannot control themselves. They are not eating because they are hungry; they are eating for pleasure and because they need to. These cravings lead to a…

Lack of control 

For an individual with a food addiction, they are not able to control their eating. They must eat a large amount of food in a short period of time to satisfy themselves. They will not be satisfied forever, though. They will become unsatisfied and need to binge eat again. 

Excessive eating

Another thing that goes along with a food addiction is excessive eating. Eating in moderation is okay, but those with a food addiction are not able to eat in moderation. Instead of eating two or three cookies, they eat the whole box. When they crave, they eat excessively, to the point where they feel sick to their stomach. This, then, leads to… 

Guilt and excuses

Once a person with a food addiction eats excessively, they then may find themselves feeling guilty for the behaviors they have just done. They know they probably shouldn’t have eaten that much food in that short of a time, but they can’t help it. This is where the shame and embarrassment comes in. In order to squash it, they may make excuses to themselves about why they ate so much in that short period of time. 

Lying about eating

Individuals with a food addiction may also feel guilty around others. This may lead to them lying to those around them in order to protect themselves and their feelings. They may lie about what they’ve eaten, how much they’ve eating, and where they stored their food. Just like any other addict, lying about their behavior is a part of the process. 

If you find yourself doing some of the things on the list, you may have a food addiction. Talk to our staff at Pinnacle Recovery today at 1-866-301-0573. We want to hear from you and help you through your addiction. 

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