The Truth About Food Addiction

This is a picture of me at the age of 52 when I weighed 240 pounds. I was on medication for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, severely depressed (even on antidepressants!) and hopeless. – Beverly Webman

Food is a drug that allows us to not feel our emotions and not acknowledge our needs. I started to self soothe at the age of eight, taking a spoon and standing in the cupboard eating Ovaltine powder and sugary things right out of the jar. That was the beginning of a lifelong distorted relationship with food as a way to not have to feel and create the illusion of nurturing and safety I longed for.

At the age of 56, immersed in caring for others, I was completely out of touch with what my own needs were and I was in a complete state of denial about how much I actually weighed or how I was putting my own life at risk.

Beverly Webman Food Addiction Support Counseling BEFORE
Lost in Emotional Pain
Beverly Webman Food Addiction - AFTER
Freedom
I was terrified to give up pasta, bread, potatoes and rice.  I was afraid that I would not be able to stay away from the donut shops and bakeries that had become regular stops on my driving routes.  But, this time, the desire to live and transform my life was greater than the fear.

Afraid To Set Boundaries

I was so afraid of having to set boundaries with people that I controlled my feelings with food so that I would not become angry or disappointed. Food allowed me to continue my childhood need to be a “good girl” and never be a bother to anyone. It allowed me to give unconditional deference to everyone and believe that I had no choices. Then food also allowed me to suppress the resentment I had at everyone who crossed my unstated boundaries leading to the belief that I was a victim at the affect of my own life and all the people in it.

I spent 30 years in and out of Overeaters Anonymous, losing the weight until the emotions became too much for me to handle and eventually food, once again would feel like my only option until finally I hit 240 pounds.

During The Lowest Point Of My Life

During the lowest and most stressful point in my life, while I was the primary caregiver for my mother…I had an embodied spiritual awakening. For the first time in my life, I knew I could make the choice to stop blaming my outside circumstances for the way I felt and behaved. The decision to put down sugar and white flour was my first step to freedom.

I took everything I had learned in the past 30 years in and out of OA and OA HOW and refined it into plan of eating that would not feel like deprivation. It was conscious, mindful nourishment. I took into consideration the changes in metabolism, particularly after the age of 40, in how we process refined carbohydrates and sugars. I was terrified to give up pasta, bread, potatoes and rice.  I was afraid that I would not be able to stay away from the donut shops and bakeries that had become regular stops on my driving routes.  But, this time, the desire to live and transform my life was greater than the fear.

IMG_2588

Unlike the total abstinence mindset, the option to allow honestly, mindful portions of “Holiday” foods on special occasions was built in from the beginning. I once heard someone share at a meeting that she did not even take a bite of her own wedding cake. I knew that this type of rigidity would never have worked for me for long-term success. Allowing yourself to make those choices is part of respecting your higher Self. Knowing that you will be integrating this balanced approach takes the mindset of deprivation and rigidity out of the picture. This is nourishment based in Self Love…pure and simple.

Getting grounded in a plan of eating that will be sustainable and satiating is the first step on this spiritual path and your foundation for a life of unimaginable freedom.

Freedom From Food Addiction

Freedom from food addiction has evolved and refined over time. As you release the emotional binding that caused your cravings and desire to numb out…you will start to refine the way you eat. Of course, you will have to add more choices as you come to the point where you don’t want to lose any more weight…by that time you are feeling empowered and confident and know what your body needs.

Today I have a refrigerator full of self-loving abundance. I am maintaining a 140 pound weight loss. I keep foods in my kitchen that I eat on a regular basis, that I never could have eaten in reasonable portions before. Blood pressure and cholesterol medications are gone and I know that I am my own best caregiver.

I will be forever grateful to Overeaters Anonymous for providing a safe place to be in fellowship and open honesty about the suffering of living with an active addiction.

Freedom from food addiction has evolved and refined over time. As you release the emotional binding that caused your cravings and desire to numb out…you will start to refine the way you eat.