As Memorial Day approaches, CardioMender, MD remembers and honors the brave men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country. As we rejoice in our country’s freedoms, CardioMender, MD wants to help you break free from food industry traps and food addictions.
What Is Food Addiction?
When a person is addicted to something, such as alcohol, drugs, food, gambling or shopping, it is due to the ‘feel good sensation’ they experience when they get what they’re seeking. This sensation involves the reward pathways in the brain and provides rushes of feel-good chemicals to “reward” substance use.
Food addiction is very real, and unfortunately, an alarming number of the world’s population is swallowed up by it. The effects of specific foods on the brain can make it challenging for some people to avoid them and stop eating, resulting in weight gain and, consequently, other serious health issues. The most problematic foods include processed food and junk foods like candy, sugary soda, and fried foods.
Break Free From Food Addiction
Here are a few ways you can break free from food addiction and get on the road to a healthier you this Memorial Day weekend and beyond!
Know Your Trigger Foods
Trigger foods are often eaten when stressed, bored or simply out of habit, not necessarily hunger. When a person eats a trigger food, it usually leaves them craving more and more; it’s a vicious cycle — the more you eat, the more you want. It is important to know your trigger foods and eliminate them from your environment as much as possible.
Most people are aware of what foods are difficult for them to stop once started, but if you are unaware of your trigger foods, try creating a food journal and write down exactly what you eat and how you feel for a week or two. This will help identify if there’s a component of food addiction going on.
As they say, “out of sight, out of mind,” so best to keep your trigger foods out of sight.
It’s easy to fall off plan when you are starving and don’t feel like cooking. With all the choices we have nowadays, you can get anything you crave delivered directly to your home in minutes or by pulling up to the nearest drive thru. To prevent falling off the wagon, create a list of healthy foods that you like and eat regularly and prep them for the week and always have a Plan A, Plan B and Plan C.
Meal prepping is great for preparing portioned meals for the week that will help you reach your nutrition goals. If you are feeling lazy, your pre-portioned meal will already be cooked and ready to eat. And don’t forget to stock up on quick-fix meals available in our Pantry and online!
Cut Out Sugar
Did you know that sugar is one of the most addicting substances on the planet? This is because sugar releases opioids and dopamine in our bodies, which play a key role in the “reward circuit” mentioned earlier in this article.
Every time we consume sugar, certain pleasure centers are activated in our brain. This can lead to a vicious cycle, resulting in negative consequences like weight gain, headaches, hormone imbalances and so much more.
When you cut out sugar and artificial sweeteners from your diet, your brain will no longer crave them and your desire for ultra-sweet dessert will substantially diminish. You may even find yourself craving nutrient-dense foods.
Having a support system may help you fight those cravings and overcome your food addiction once and for all. At CardioMender, MD, we are here to help you break free from food addiction and become the best version of yourself, inside and out. We provide the tools to help you improve your energy levels, activity levels and eating habits so you can achieve your weight loss goals.