Addiction

"Enough."

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Especially on the level of individuals, perhaps the biggest stumbling block to food addiction’s acceptance as a legitimate problem with specific remedies is that most folks don’t want to think they’re that bad off.

”Sure, I’ve developed a bit of a paunch, maybe, but I just have to be a bit more careful. But an addict? No way.” Certainly that sentiment is true for many people, but in a nation where two out of every three adults are overweight or obese, it may not be true for as many people who would say it.

Food and money

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Perhaps it’s stating the obvious, but like just about everything else is capitalist America, money is at the center of our obesity crisis.

For the food industry, the issue is profit, of course. In such a thin-margin business, the only way to increase profit is to increase sales. No wonder they spend tens of billions on marketing annually.

But as a recovering food addict, I have an entirely different perspective on food and money, and that’s the untold thousands I spent to get my substances, completely disregarding prudence.

Un-dieting advice, part 4 | Do the minimum

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Over the years, people have occasionally opined that the kit of actions that has allowed me to lose 155 pounds and keep it off 20 years is "a lot." 'Course, "a lot" is a relative term, but not a useful one necessarily. "A little" or "a lot" both miss the point of a desired outcome; "enough" is the only thing that matters:

If you want an outcome, are you doing enough to get it?

And how do you know if it's enough? Within a wholesome range, you can judge by results.

If you're getting the results you want, you're doing enough.

A slender silver lining

As you know, I talk about obesity and I talk about food addiction, always trying to make clear that the two aren’t analogous.

You can be obese without being a food addict, and you can be a food addict without being obese. It’s true that there is significant overlap between the populations, and it’s also true that engaging in behavior that leads to obesity can also lead to food addiction, especially if one has the genetic predisposition.

An important, unexpected voice on food addiction

In addition to the video I posted yesterday in which pediatrician Nadine Burke speaks my language, namely “food addiction,” I have been heartened to see the concept of food addiction spread inexorably into the mainstream.

Indiana TV station looks at food addiction

It's a little weird following Indiana TV reporter Jenny Anchondo on Twitter, because she tweets things like "Right two lanes of I-65 SB closed near Keystone Ave. due to crash http://pic.twitter.com/XncxoXMA," and "When @Fox59sjones is happy, everybody is happy. He got a 2 for 1 from the vending machine today. #Score."

Legitimacy for food addiction

This isn't my only thought on the subject, or even the primary one; I expect to pen that in the next day or two. But I see legitimate, informed citations of food addiction — as opposed to dumb tweets such as "OMG, cayenne-encrusted popcorn shrimp balls dipper in cranberry honey mustard, my new food addiction! — almost every day. Here's another one, from Nourish, a short video featuring Dr. Nadine Burke.

My speech on food addiction

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I gave this speech about food addiction last week at my Toastmasters club in Lexington, Mass.

The audio isn't the best, but it IS there. Also, if I were editing, I'd have eliminated the first two minutes or so, and if you want, you could skip ahead to that point. Prior to that, the speaker is my friend, author and public speaker Roberta K. Taylor.

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