Friday, September 30, 2016
I have always said I was a foodaholic, but never seriously thought about what that meant. I suppose it was more of an excuse for my compulsive eating.
**Wait....you say....but you eat so healthy????
True, that is all true. I do eat healthy when I am on track and focused. I eat simple healthy foods in moderation. I eat organic eggs, and produce. I make lovely soups with chicken. I eat organic steel cut oatmeal. I make protein and fruit slushies and I juice greens. But I also eat out with friends.
**Friend looking at me confused.....But you eat healthy at the restaurant too. You eat half orders of omelets. You take home half your bigger meals. You eat dinner salads when you order the caramel apple pie we split.
True. Because, it is so much fun and so tasty to split that tiny slice of horribly expensive caramel apple pie with you. When we are out, I am focused on healthy eating and treats in moderation.
**Okay....What's the epiphany?
Not so long ago, I ate a whole package of Oreo cookies in two hours. It doesn't end there. Two to five days later I still shoved excess carbs and sugar into my face before I finally felt sated and embarrassed or disgusted enough to get back on the program. The damage was done though. I gained back the three pounds it took me six weeks to lose.
I don't know the triggers. But I do know that I long for the food. I think excessively about mocha frappes, much in the same way a teen does about her first crush.
I am not comfortable till the unhealthy food is consumed and I can focus on other things. It doesn't matter that the food might give me a stomach ache or aggravate some of the pre diabetic symptoms. I just need to eat it so I can stop the obsessing.
Many years ago, a doctor prescribed Xanax for me. I didn't realize it was an addictive drug. I had taken three from the bottle as prescribed, when an addicted love one discovered them. The bottle disappeared. I angrily confronted this person and they confessed to consuming the whole bottle. But this story isn't about them. It is about me. I have had a sister and a husband addicted to prescription meds. As a young child I watched this much loved sister destroy her life with pills. Then I went to her funeral because she fell asleep in the car during the middle of the day. I swore I would never do that to my family. Abusing drugs is abhorrent to me. But....and here is the big BUT....I craved those pills. I wanted them. I couldn't live without them. But, they were abhorrent to me. I thought about them for months, but never sought more out because I refused to destroy my life and those who loved me from drug addiction.
Yes. Compulsive obsessive eating may not be quite as destructive as a drug addiction, but it is destructive. I am about 80 pounds overweight. I can't get around easily to play with grandchildren. I have light flares and viscous detachments in my eyes. I have neuropathy in my feet. I don't fit easily into airplane seats. The dog doesn't walk as far as he wants. I am not well enough or strong enough to work even part time. Luckily, I have good retirement, so not a burden to tax payers.
So, here is my question to myself. Why don't I see gluttony as abhorrent? I was able to not take more Xanax despite cravings and obsessive thoughts. I have even turned down prescriptions offered to me. I need to amp up my awareness of obsessive eating and recognize it as an abhorrent behavior that IS destructive to me and my family, and for me more destructive than Xanax.
I also have the same compulsions with reading, knitting, writing, swimming and road trips. All of those activities are beneficial. I will continue to practice them and substitute them for the food obsessions.
This exercise in writing is to help me understand and move forward in my Mantra:
Every day in every way, I am getting better and better, leaner, cleaner, stronger, healthier.
Gluttony is an unhealthy and abhorrent obsession. I am smart enough and strong enough to make better choices.
Thanks for reading.