But, there is another critical factor. One which may well get to the root of the problem.
This relates to our ‘emotional relationship’ with food. Specifically how we use food to fulfil some personal inadequacy or void. These may include:
- A lack of personal confidence &/or self respect
- A lack of direction and focus
- The need to feel loved, admired, respected.
- The need to pacify ones creative thoughts and emotions
When we are indulging our food addictions and feel full from food, we temporarily disconnect from the inadequacy.
This is why even people who LOOK healthy, are in fact NOT because they have a fundamental unhealthy relationship with food. Indeed, food addiction or disordered eating doesn’t always make you fat.
You can be skinny and be addicted to food. You can eat healthy food and still eat in a disorderly way. I know many self professed ‘health nuts’ for example whose outward healthy appearance disguises their inner personal insecurities and traumas.
To illustrate this, I’m going to paint a light hearted picture of some of the ‘disordered eating personalities’ from the health world. See if you can recognise yourself in any – or all - of them.
As there are 8 ‘Disordered Eating Personalities’, I’ll split the information into two posts for ease of ‘digestibility’!
The 8 ‘Disordered Eating Personalities’ are:
- The Professional Dieter
- The Dogmatist
- The Lab Experiment
- The Addiction Switcher
- The Anorexic Raw Foodist
- The Toxic Ostrich
- The Serial Detoxer
- The Quick-Fixer
1. The Professional Dieter
The Professional Dieter tries every diet available at least once. Fortunately, most of the ‘diets’ they try consist of mainly healthy foods, even if the variety is poor.
But because these dieters can never focus long enough on one diet to make significant lasting progress, they swing back and forth between losing them regaining weight rapidly.
This dangerous eating pattern reflects the Professional Dieter’s lack of focus and direction in their life. It is also based on their belief that ‘the magic solution’ to their personal issues is ‘out there’ somewhere, if only they could find it.
The Professional Dieter can be helped by showing them that ‘the solution’ can be found within themselves by clarifying and sustaining their positive self image.
2. The Dogmatist
Black or white. This is the motto of the Dogmatist. Food is either raw or cooked. Meat or Vegan. There is no balance or variety. The Dogmatist sticks with what they think works. They will literally destroy their health before they admit that their beliefs are flawed.
As an extremist, the Dogmatist also tends to be a control freak in all aspects of life. They believe that by always being ‘in control’ they can better attract their fundamental need for love, respect and admiration.
Of course in reality this is untrue. A ‘Hitler-like’ autocratic personality may initially impress. But this admiration is more likely to be based on fear than on love or respect.
The best ‘cure’ for a Dogmatist is to help them see the positives in other perspectives and how these could benefit them.
My friend for example absolutely refused to eat cooked food. Rather than me arguing that some foods may be healthier cooked I simply lightly steamed the veggies, cooled them, then served them in a sumptuous healthy dressing similar to Warren’s!
My friend demanded seconds and asked me for the recipe!
3. The Lab Experiment
The Lab Experiment is willing to try just about everything to give them the extra edge. Sometimes to the point of excess. Like the Professional Dieter, they impatiently jump around from one dietary ‘experiment’ to the next, as they try in vain to discover the ‘solution’ outside of themselves.
The best help to address their lack of stability and focus is for them to clarify their self image and purpose in life. The Lab Experiment is very similar in nature to the Addiction Switcher...
Who you can hear about in part 2...