Obesity levels, on a global scale, are continually on the rise, even though now more than ever we have easier access to healthy foods, virtual exercise regimes and overall holistic techniques.

In tandem with this, food addiction diagnoses are also establishing a trend in association with binge eating habits, increasing its familiarity as an addiction.

Through the rise of both food addiction and obesity levels, questions are beginning to be raised around their association with one another.

Naturally, obesity is defined as a disease where excessive levels of body fat reside, down to poor exercise, health issues and unhealthy eating habits.

In turn, food addiction is driven by the ongoing cravings of sugary foods, junk foods and processed goods, down to biochemical responses within the internal reward system.

By considering causations and side effects, it’s easy to see how similar both conditions are. Yet, the topic of conversation is, how impactful are both food addiction and obesity, on one another, with a focus on intensified habits.

At Asana Lodge, we’re all about holistic healing, helping to heal the mind from addiction, which in turn promotes all-round recovery.

Through our approach, we’re keen to highlight the impacts that food addiction, both physical and psychological forms have on obesity levels, along with effective strategies of food addiction and obesity prevention.

If you’re struggling with either a food addiction or a degree of obesity, we invite you to contact our team for professional support.

Alternatively, here’s our latest blog on food addiction – impact on obesity, along with ways to tackle their independent and mutual effects.

 

What is food addiction?

Food addiction is seen as a controversial diagnosis, especially as it’s categorised under the same umbrella as the likes of substance abuse.

For the majority of people, food addiction will come across as an unrealistic likelihood, where control and concern over nutritional balance are prioritised.

Yet, for some individuals, food addiction is their reality, where excessive consumption of junk foods, of high fat, salt and sugar ingredients, and where processed meals are misused.

Like any other addiction, food addiction will begin with initial use, where trigger foods may have been heavily consumed to tackle stress, to curb cravings, or simply through an uncontrollable lifestyle.

Once trigger foods have been consumed, the brain will rely on their artificial presence of dopamine and serotonin, causing the brain to go into overdrive within the reward system.

Down to the positive effects that junk foods have when considering mood, many individuals fixate on those effects, similar to drug abuse, making it challenging to avoid consumption.

Withdrawal from food addiction will resemble a similar process as substance abuse, as tolerance will be present, where existing damages have been made to the body, brain, wellbeing, weight and fitness.

This alone showcases how real food addiction is, as withdrawal can be challenging, as can breaking the cycle, even when consequences are present.

 

Food addiction – Impact on obesity, wellbeing and mental health

It’s easy to see how a food addiction can materialise into greater obesity ratings, down to the fact that consistent, ongoing consumption of unhealthy foods is experienced.

For someone who is already clinically classified as obese, the presence of food addiction can be detrimental, placing significant risks on health, with a focus on the body’s vital organs and functioning.

This clearly shows how food addiction – impact on obesity is a damaging correlation, which can make an already challenging lifestyle to overcome, that much harder.

On the other end of the scale, obesity as a standalone condition can aggravate a food addiction. After all, those who are obese commonly consume high calorific foods, which in turn, can aggravate the symptoms of food addiction.

Ultimately, at face value, both food addiction and obesity result in similar actions. Yet, obesity is commonly down to voluntary health choices, while food addiction is uncontrollable, down to brain connectivity.

The dangers of this correlation are that those suffering from obesity already display behaviours of those with food addictions. Their lifestyles and diets will mirror the uncontrollable actions of fixation of junk foods.

Once a psychological association is made, where the emphasis is placed on the internal reward system, those actions will be paired with thoughts, feelings, outlooks and cravings, turning lifestyle choices into habitual behaviours.

Enabling the impacts of food addiction, on overall wellbeing and mental health is also a key concern, as the side effects of excessive and uncontrollable exposure to junk food can result in severe health problems, such as diabetes, depression, eating disorders and cardiovascular issues.

This showcases the necessity to tackle a food addiction, through specialist guidance, which isn’t a necessity for someone suffering from mild obesity.

 

Tackling food addiction and obesity

Down to the concern of both standalone conditions, and their impacts once combined, it is very important that efforts are made to learn how to overcome food addiction, while also working through the common causations of obesity.

Working with specialists is recommended as each case will have different initial causations, where food may have been abused for emotional purposes, or where a lack of nutritional knowledge may be present.

Through professional support, the likes of food addiction therapy can be worked through, helping to identify trigger foods, which will ultimately also have a positive effect on obesity.

In turn, the work that is invested in tackling food addiction will directly improve health and wellbeing, helping to balance common struggles linked to obesity.

Nutritional guidance, motivation around exercise, mental health support, and food addiction relapse prevention plans will be recommended to alleviate the symptoms of both food addiction and obesity.

Obesity is a commonly thrown around diagnosis, which places emphasis on unhealthy choices around diet and movement. Yet, down to the habits linked to obesity, the likelihood of developing a dual diagnosis of food addiction is common, which carries even greater complexities and difficulties linked to withdrawal.

For those who start off with a food addiction, correlating evidence suggests that obesity will be a progressive diagnosis, again down to habit, down to consistent abuse of junk food, and down to routine lifestyle choices.

Alone they are damaging conditions, while combined, they heighten one another even more.

If you’re suffering from food addiction, which is negatively impacting your health, it’s time to consider relevant forms of therapy here at Asana Lodge.

Alternatively, for more information on ‘food addiction – impact on obesity’, contact our team, here to guide you through addiction and mental health issues.

 

Sources:

https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight

https://www.nature.com/articles/npp2016221

https://www.healthline.com/health/fast-food-effects-on-body

Raffa Bari

Raffa Bari (Bsc, CertEd, CELTA, NLP Prac, BAAT) has an extensive background in addiction recovery, specialising in areas such as Integrative Art Psychotherapy (BAAT Registered) for addiction treatment. Using her incredible dedication and passion towards personal transformation and recovery, Raffa has helped truly transform the lives of so many individuals. It is this extensive knowledge and hands-on experience in everything to do with addiction recovery that makes her the perfect author for our site. Raffa will be posting regularly with new updates and information on the latest industry topics to do with addiction and mental health.

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