Overcoming Food Addictions
Guest post by Anna Townsley
Today is an exciting day for me, in fact I’m quite proud of myself! Yesterday was Easter and as the day came to an end I excitedly celebrated the fact that I have now made it through 3 major holidays completely sugar free!
This is a big deal for me because for most of my life holiday candy has been a favorite – you know, the individual holiday candy you can buy at the store – chocolate covered marshmallow bunnies, santa’s, and hearts used to be my favorite.
Moment of honesty – here’s how bad it used to be… being that my parents are into health and nutrition, when I was a kid that kind of candy was a no go – so I used to sneak it. The most memorable of the sneaking… when my parents were gone I used bike up to the Walgreen’s outside our neighborhood (they had the best candy selection and coupons) and buy about a weeks worth of candy and junk food. The goal was to hide it in my room and for it to last for a week or so, but lack of control and the fear of it being found, I would usually eat it all in a day or two (how I didn’t OD on sugar I don’t know). Wow, while I have shared this with others before, it is a bit weird and vulnerable to type this up in a post that anyone can read.
Once I got older I stopped biking up to the store and buying a grocery bag full of candy – because I could drive. Instead I would just stop for candy or junk food whenever I was out and about. Occasionally I would set a new goal and make it a week or two without sugar, but I always went back – just like an addict. Even during my first two 90 Day Challenges I would find myself struggling with food. Yes, I was doing a lot better and eating a lot less junk, but that darn holiday candy still got me every time. That deeply rooted lack of self control was a big reason why I completely cut out ALL sugar and sweets last year – I needed to go to the complete extreme opposite before I could begin to learn a healthy balance.
Anyhoo, now you have a small background as to why it is such a big deal for me to go without holiday candy for so long. I was so excited yesterday as I knocked out holiday #3… BUT WAIT, it get’s even BETTER!!!! As I was driving around today it suddenly occurred to me that I was wrong… I have stayed clear of holiday candy and sweets for not 3, but 5 HOLIDAYS! That’s – 1, 2, 3, 4, FIVE holidays (Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and Easter)!!! That may not be a big deal for you, but for me it is huge!! And it has completely shocked me how PROUD I am of myself – didn’t see that emotion coming at all.
So if anyone is reading this and you too struggle with some type of food addiction, if there is one thing I could say in this moment, it would be this: While holiday food is great and yummy, the holiday’s can be so much more if you choose to make that choice. Yes it takes some different planning, but holiday’s are only centered around food if you choose to make it that way. So next time the holidays show up I challenge you to do something different, make them something more. You and your goals are worth so much more than that chocolate covered marshmallow bunny (or whatever your food of choice might be, and regardless of how delicious you might find it).