It is crucial we not sublimate our addictive tendencies on any other behaviors in early recovery, as well as to identify any hidden addictions which may still be lurking in our lives now that we are no longer actively abusing drugs or alcohol. One such behavior which often presents in addicts involves excessive eating. A food addiction can be just as life threatening as a drug habit, causing all sorts of health problems which lead to an early death. How can you determine whether food has become a problem for you in early sobriety?
Food should be a source of energy and nourishment, not an activity to alleviate boredom or negative emotions. If you find yourself turning to food as a means to relieve your boredom or anxiety, this is a strong indicator you have developed an unhealthy relationship with food. The specific foods you are choosing to eat are also important, as a diet heavy in processed or sugary foods is a sign you are seeking to stimulate the pleasure center of your brain rather than seek nourishment from the foods you are eating.
If you believe you are forming an unhealthy addiction to eating, what can you do about it? Obviously we cannot abstain from eating like we can drugs or alcohol, as food is necessary for our survival. Just as you did with your addiction to drugs or alcohol, you should admit to yourself and to your sponsor that food has become a problem for you and ask for help to restore healthy eating habits in your life. Establishing a set schedule of healthy, properly portioned meals is a great way to get back on track in your eating, cutting out those unhealthy sugary snacks which you have been indulging in to relieve stress or discomfort. Above all else, you must maintain your rigorous honesty with your sponsor in all area of your life, including your eating habits. Hiding your unhealthy eating will only serve to open you up to the possibility of relapsing on other addictions in your life.
It is natural for our addictive tendency to seek another source of satisfaction in early sobriety, and many of those recovering from substance abuse find themselves forming an unhealthy relationship with food. This addiction to eating is detrimental both to your health and to your progress in recovery, as it is an unhealthy coping mechanism allowing you to repress those feelings which you should be processing as part of your program of recovery. At Evolutions Treatment Center, we understand the dangers of forming an unhealthy relationship with food in early sobriety, and offer dietician counseling as part of our holistic approach to substance abuse treatment. If you are struggling with an addiction to food, especially if you are in recovery from substance abuse, call our Admissions Counselors today at 833-818-3031 and inquire about enrollment in our outpatient program so you may receive therapy and counseling for your food addiction. So long as you seek to do something about your unhealthy relationship with food, you can continue on in your recovery journey and achieve lasting sobriety!