Food Addiction - No Control

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You may overdose on potato chips or tortilla chips once in a while, but would you consider yourself to be a food addict? The answer is important, because it could be the key to determining what course of action you need to take in order to lose weight. A number of medical experts say that food addiction is just as serious as nicotine or cocaine addiction -- and can potentially be just as deadly.

When you suffer from food addiction, you have an overwhelming desire for a particular food. The desire is so strong, in fact, that if you are unable to consume that food, you suffer from withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, nausea, and depression. Food addicts crave the comfort that a particular food gives them. They also may engage in binge eating. Their cravings for food may be both physical and psychological.

It should be pointed out that there are different varieties of food addiction. For instance, there is compulsive overeating, where an individual goes on eating binges that can last several days. The addict may sometimes lose weight, but tends to gain it back again. Symptoms include eating quickly, compulsively eating alone, and eating when there is no evidence of hunger.

Yet another form of addiction is bulimia, in which an individual overeats, then purges either by vomiting or by taking laxatives. Signs of this condition include isolating oneself when eating, trying to consume huge portions of food rapidly, and being preoccupied with one's weight.