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Identifying Your Addictive Foods

Similar to emotional eating, treating food addiction involves a therapeutic process of gaining insight and awareness into unresolved emotional issues. Besides that, the food addict must also identify and stop eating the foods he or she is addicted to.

A food journal can be a valuable tool in this process. Try writing down the foods you're eating, as well as your thoughts and feelings before and after eating. You'll also want to record your physical symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, fatigue, hunger, pain, irritability and anxiety.

After a week or so, reading back over your answers is bound to reveal some patterns. For more clarity, support and guidance, bring your food journal to a therapy session or an appointment with a dietician who specializes in food addiction (contact us for referrals).

Here are three questions that may help you hone in on foods that are addictive for you:

  1. While I'm eating this food item, am I already thinking about the next time I will eat it?
  2. When I finish eating this food item, do I feel a sense of loss or panic because it's gone?
  3. Do I think about this food item many times through the day?

For a more comprehensive food addiction assessment, click here to take the Yale University Food Addiction Scale.