Bad Drug

I use food for comfort, stress relief, and even expressions of anger. In other words, much like a drug addict turns to drugs for all of the above, I turn to food.

Not just any food, mind you. It has to taste good. In other words, I don’t console or reward myself with plain tuna or unsalted popcorn. (Ewwww) Think chocolate truffles, macaroni and cheese, or Pepperidge Farm Milano cookies. Think Doublestuf Oreos, Ruffles chips and French onion dip, and loaded cheese fries. Think cheeseburgers, chocolate mousse cake, and cookie dough. But, I digress…

Why do I do this? FOOD for thought… (hahaha)

I was raised a VERY good Southern Baptist. We don’t smoke, drink, or chew, or go with boys who do…

But we EAT.

I can give you a very long list of the “don’ts” I was taught as a child, those sins to be avoided at all costs. Funny, but eating isn’t one of them. I’m sure somewhere along the way, some preacher preached against overeating, but it musn’t have been very memorable because I have zero recollection. I have to wonder if overeating had been as taboo as say, smoking weed or premarital sex, would things have been different? If bingeing on junk food were treated like a bad behavior like going to a bar, seeing rated R movies, or getting a tattoo, would I have developed this habit? Now some of the “bad behaviors” I just listed are things I’ve done, some aren’t, but NONE of them are habits of mine. Then again, there are others who experienced a very similar upbringing and they DO struggle with things like drugs, alcohol, gambling, or sex addiction. That would mean I can’t totally blame my upbringing for my dependence upon food. It still wouldn’t change the fact that I use food much in the same way anyone uses a vice for consolation.

There’s one problem with this method of comfort, of soothing my sadness:

It doesn’t work.

Sure it tastes good while it’s going down. But I eat too fast (read more about that later) and so even that part isn’t as enjoyable as it should be. Then afterward comes the guilt, the frustration, and the stomachache, not to mention the extra pounds and sluggishness. Food is no more effective than vodka when it comes to solving one’s problems, and it’s nearly as harmful in the longrun.

OK, so I’m turning to an inadequate outside source for comfort. What can I do about it?

Here are my ideas:

1) Realize that food isn’t doing the job I’ve assigned to it. It isn’t a good enough provider of comfort and solace. I’ve simply given food a task it can’t perform.

2) Find something else to which I turn for comfort. (Hear God going: “ME ME ME!!!”)

3) Figure out what’s bothering me so much and see if I can eliminate or solve any of those issues.

What do ya’ll think???

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