22 December 2016

Changing Your Life After Food Addiction

Food addiction is often misunderstood, and many people refuse to believe that it is an actual addiction. However, it is all too real and thousands upon thousands of individuals around the world have found this out the hard way. Food addiction can lead to a host of health issues including diabetes and obesity; these are conditions that can have a detrimental impact on the affected individual’s life. One woman from Texas learned that a food addiction had many negative consequences that could only be turned around once the addiction was conquered.

Severe Food Addiction

Forty-four-year-old Lynn Cofield from Texas found that she had developed a severe food addiction after ballooning to 19 stone; her diet consisted of chocolate, sweets, cookie dough and wines, often adding up to more than 5,000 calories every day. Nevertheless, she knew that she needed to make a change upon reading an article about the negative effects of sugar in 2013; she was stunned at what she discovered and on that day, she emptied three large bin liners of junk food from her cupboards.

Settled Emotions with Food

Lynn explained, “I was crying as I threw everything out, but at that moment, I felt better than I had done in a long time. Before, I’d always settled my emotions with junk food; I was miserable in my marriage and upset; I was taking care of everything and everyone except for me. I snacked constantly; there was no concept of not allowing myself to eat whatever I wanted. My diet was nothing but sugar, junk, cookie dough, wine, pizza, cookies, chips, candy, KitKats, Reece’s peanut butter cups and cereal – it was all filled with sugar. I was probably eating around 5,000 calories a day at my worst, but after reading an article about how sugar is killing us, it made me think for the first time about my diet. I read all of our food labels to find out the sugar content and just couldn’t believe how much sugar was in everything.”

Vicious Cycle

Lynn suffered from social anxiety as a result of her food addiction, and because of this, she would overeat, which she felt held her back. She said, “The only control I had in my life was food; it made me feel better until I would look in the mirror, then I’d comfort eat – it was a vicious cycle that I couldn’t get out of. For me, eating out of hunger was never an option because I was always eating, I would have junk food whenever I was bored or feeling sad. Before, my weight was holding me back; I was too embarrassed to go to social events because I didn’t like how I looked.”

Lynn said that she made the ‘insanely drastic decision’ to do something about her food addiction after she read an article about having a sugar-free Christmas.

Extremely Challenging

She admitted that beating her addiction once and for all was extremely challenging, and she experienced uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms; she suffered uncontrollable tremors, but after these had passed, she felt better than ever. Lynn managed to lose a massive six stone after cutting out sugar completely from her diet, and she went on to lose a further three stone after starting weight-lifting. Lynn has been sugar-free for three years now and has successfully overcome her crippling food addiction.

She was inspired by the world’s oldest female body builder, Ernestine Shepherd, and began exercising six times per week. She said, “Her story just struck me; I thought: ‘Oh my gosh, look at this woman, if she can do this, surely I can too. I taught myself how to lift weights and learned how to fuel my body by incorporating complex carbs and got into a solid routine. Everything could have changed up until that point; I could have gone back and flipped to old habits, but it became an addiction.”

Driven by Fear of Failure

The only sugars Lynn consumes are natural sugars from fruit, and she now weighs in at a slim ten stone 3lbs. She is now a personal trainer who specialises in educating people on nutrition. “Before I was quiet, isolated and would never have introduced myself to anyone, but now I’m confident, strong and have even been travelling on my own. Old me would never have had the guts to start a business, but now I have over 180 clients; before I never would have entertained that or believed it could be possible. I’m still driven by a fear of failure, the previous girl was failed and saw herself as a failure, now I’ll never let myself go back to that.”

Help and Support for Food Addicts

If you think that you or a loved one might be suffering from a food addiction, then contact us here at UKAT. We specialise in dealing with food addictions, and our staff are fully trained so that they can explain the consequences and nature of addiction in a way that can be understood. If you would like any further information on our clinic, staff or treatments, then please get in touch today, and we would be more than happy to assist in any way that we can.

Source: Obese woman sheds 9st after ditching ONE thing from diet (Daily Star)

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