A therapist migth be helpful. That said, I definitely had some issues along the same lines as you and did not need one. (Not as extreme, maybe, but if someone made cupcakes I would most certainly be eating 2-3 of them every day until they were gone, and it seemed like I would never be able to stop doing that. I'd eat just to get rid of the temptation, I'm sure you know the feeling).
I had a really strong motivation to start saying "no, I don't eat those things"; I thought I had a bad blood sugar problem, and though it turned out I didn't, by then I had already kicked the habit, so to speak. I'm not sure what you can find in your life and your goals to do the same. But I do know that simply NOT eating stuff like that -- not any of it -- for a while can all by itself make you lose the compulsion. (Edit: and similar with things that are not unhealthy but you might over-eat anyway -- it is possible to break the habit if you can grit it out for long enough.) At times I have gone for weeks or months with formerly-problematic foods right there in the refrigerator or freezer and never been seriously tempted. Mostly I just don't think about it, exactly the same as would someone who's never had such a problem at all. So if you are able to give cold-turkey a try for a month or so you might be surprised at the results.
Do you *need* a therapist? Probably not. Would it make your life easier if you talked to one at least a few times? Almost certainly.
Therapy is one of those things that falls into the "if you can get it, get it" category. If you're still in school and you can talk to counselors free or at low cost, grab for the opportunity. You paid for it through your student fees already, so absolutely use what you've got. If you're not in school but you have a strong enough income that it won't put you in debt, do it. If you work for a company with an employee assistance program, find out if this type of therapy is part of that.
But if you can't really afford it and don't have low-cost access, you can most likely work through this on your own. It's not a weird thing; some of us are just more interested in and attuned to food than others. Some of it may be personal history, and a lot of it is probably genetic. Depending on where your ancient ancestors came from, knowing when there was food around and wanting it was probably a big part of the reason their genes survived to produce you. I kind of think that being disinterested in food may in fact be a sort of de-evolution. Those of us who are food-aware are probably the normal ones; it's just that our environment has changed in the last century so that it's no longer an advantage.
The best approach to dealing with this type of situation probably is to make your environment as similar as possible to the last century. Don't buy food; buy ingredients. If there's pizza in your fridge, you'll eat it. If there's flour and yeast in your pantry and tomatoes and mozzarella (or better yet, milk and rennet) in your fridge, you will have to go to some work to make pizza, and you're likely to wait until the appropriate time. You know yourself; you can decide what foodstuffs you can allow in your environment and which ones you can't have around.
And be sure to convince yourself that your roommates' food is NOT yours; eating their stuff would be stealing. They almost certainly don't feel that way, but tell yourself that they do, so you exclude their food from your psychological environment even if you can't remove it from your physical environment.
You probably should see a psychotherapist -- not because this is so weird, but because it's an issue that's holding you back. There's a certain degree to which we all get this -- if we "shouldn't" have something, it suddenly looks very appealing. But if you can't have any food around at all, by all means talk it over with someone.
When I was growing up, my parents had very little money and my mom suffered from deep depressions. Days would go by with almost no food and us kids would just have to fend for ourselves or go hungry. We would eat the same thing -- the cheapest day-old bread the grocery store sold plus margerine -- for several days in a row. When I got out on my own, I bought a lot of food and always had a pantry stacked to the ceiling. I still buy too much.
We all have our food issues. Therapy could be great for you.
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People are different, and have different urges. My guess is some of this is psychological, but some can certainly be biological. We do not all have the same hormonal in/balances, for instance.
I for instance, always have food in the fridge, and it never tortures me, but by god if I know my hubby has bought candies I like for his "secret" stash, I'll be hovering around it like a moth to a flame..
If you think a therapist could help you, why not try talking to one?
Here's a question that even Google could not answer for me. I'm very curious of the psychology / biology behind this.
I can't keep leftovers (or really any snacks) in my apartment because I will eat them immediately. Even if I went to a large pizza dinner, I cannot bring home extra slices because they would be gone before bedtime. I can't even keep dry cookie mix because I'm fine adding a little water and then it's cookie dough.
However, I've noticed many of my roommates have no problem with this. They can keep pizza slices in the fridge for days until they end up stale. The interesting part is that they are not trying to control themselves (it doesn't seem) -- they simply have no DESIRE to eat this excess food. For me, if I knew I had food in the fridge, it would be all I think about, but this doesn't seem to torture their thoughts.
Why? I have even considered hypnosis / therapy if there is a psychology root for this. I just don't understand.
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