Learning to help others with food addiction with a health education masters degree
Giving up drink, drugs or cigarettes is seen as a huge undertaking, and rightly so. It is widely seen you can be addicted to nicotine, alcohol and various other drugs. However, losing weight is rarely treated with the same gravitas, despite the fact that people can, in fact, be addicted to food.
In this case, trying to change a lifestyle and losing weight is often dismissed by others as just dieting or trying to “cut down”. The person doing so, however, could be battling a food addiction, where simply lowering intake is not an option and instead more serious measures such as hypnotherapy for weight loss need to be taken into consideration.
Food addiction works along the basis that a person feels gratification after eating copious amounts of food. It’s common knowledge that eating releases endorphins into the brain, making the person feel happy. In this case, getting that endorphin high is very similar to that a drug addict would achieve through their substance abuse, and therefore equally as addictive.
Overeating can also release serotonin, a naturally produced chemical that contributes to feelings of happiness and well-being.
Taking all this into consideration, a person who suffers from a food addiction will experience similar feelings of happiness and elation after eating as a drug or cigarette addict when they get their fix.
In this case, diets and exercise can do little to the person in question, and will be decidedly harder for them to endure than for most. Instead, measures should be taken to treat the problem at the source, to alleviate their dependency on food and allow them to live a life free from the addiction.
Hypnotherapy to treat food addiction would involve training the brain to stop feeling such chronic cravings, and alleviating the emotional hunger for the release of endorphins. In doing this, a person can feel their need for overeating to subside, and allow them a life where feelings and emotions are not so entirely based on the ingestion of food.