Food addiction is defined as a disorder pertaining to preoccupation of food, the anticipation of pleasure of eating and simply the availability of food. It involves a loss of self-control over food or depriving oneself of food and a preoccupation with body weight and image.
There are 3 types of food addiction: Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, and Compulsive Overeaters.
- Anorexia Nervosa It is defined by an intense fear of gaining weight. Behaviors include excessive weighing oneself, excessive measuring of body parts, and consistantly using a mirror to check body size. One’s self-esteem is dependent on body shape and weight.
- Bulimia Nervosa Also known as binge eating, bulimia is another type of food addiction that is used to prevent weight gain. Sufferers become ashamed of their eating behavior and try to hide symptoms through rapid consumption of food. They will until they become too full (painfully so) or stop if they are intruded upon. 80-90% of bulimics will make themselves vomit. Other behaviors include using laxatives, fasting and excessive exercise.
- Compulsive Overeaters Those that are compulsive overeaters demonstrate uncontrollable binge eating without weight control and see that as normal behavior. They become addicted to food and lose control over the amount of food that they eat. Overeaters typically are moderately to severely obese. The average binge eater is 60% overweight. Unlike bulimics however (who “do” something about the food they have consumed), compulsive overeaters believe what they are doing is, as previously stated, normal.
Are you addicted to eating? Take the Food Addiction Self Test to see your results!