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Addiction moved from eating to eating/dieting...

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Old 06-26-2008, 10:04 PM   #1
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Default Addiction moved from eating to eating/dieting...

I'm reading a novel which is mostly cute called Perfect Fit. At one point the woman who's losing weight goes to her shrink and says I'm still addicted to food, just now it's counting calories and losing weight! She becomes so obsessed about dieting that she analyzes everyone even at Starbucks one day, someone grabs a carb loaded treat and coffee, yikes, just think of the calorie count! She KNOWS and dieting becomes her LIFE. The shrink asks her if she's waiting until she's perfect to begin living and dating...

Anyways once she becomes thinner after a million years on the treadmill and millions of miles from the nearest brownie she finally fits into slim clothes. Then she learns that the perfect size doesn't necessarily equal the perfect fit. Her friends are jealous, she's a stranger to her own body, used to being invisable and fat.

She learns that the recipe for a happy life might not be low calorie after all. Does happiness come from a smaller dress size? Ok I think the "idea" of this book was a good one but it's filled with trash and side themes that are rediculous. However are we on a quest to be the perfect size, waiting for life to happen, and what happens when we do reach that thin (I did just two years ago after leaving my husband), does life change that dramatically? Is the secret to live low calorie, obsessing about weight?

Here I am again, and I'm repeating the "same theme" as I did the yo you thing... thinking IF I would lose the 10 lbs and tone up life will be better. I think sometimes I like dieting mode because I feel in CONTROL. Especially my new Body for Life Challenge mode, ultra weight lifting fast success mode. However here I am addicted to dieting all over again! I've done this before, gone from addiction to food - and fast food, junk - to addiction to dieting, watching every calorie. Is both an addiction?

I'm so sad that my Mac Pismo laptop died when I'm in "this mode" because I feel like I'm in Sex in the City mode... Yet I found a very old used on on ebay, on it's way thank goodness. So girls, what is it? Are we swapping one addiction for another here? And if we are "addicts" to dieting long enough what are we going to do when we are DONE? Is life that much better thinner, really thin and fit? Will we then allow ourselves to get a life (ie, me 10 lbs over and a bit of a belly not wanting to go on a date 3 yrs after leaving my ex because I'm not quite there). Can we start lives NOW? How much of life is about our weight REALLY? Why do so many a bit overweight people have lives and we DON'T, at least I don't feel like I do (in the dating/man dept). What do that have that we don't, it's not just weight is it?

Thus my next read, How to Be Single... about a woman who travels the world trying to figure out what it is that women do to be "single." As more women are then aren't these days. What's the new norm? To us single women, are we being perfectionists, waiting for something before we can put ourselves out there? And how do other women around the world deal with being single?
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Old 06-26-2008, 10:39 PM   #2
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Hi,
I know where you're coming from... I go from the deep end to the kiddie pool depending on where I am on the weight loss cycle. I've found the only way I can get away from the extreme enjoyment of food is an extremely enthuisiastic interest in losing weight (near obsession, I will admit). If I'm not passionate about it, I get nowhere.

Now, I'm lucky to have a wonderful fiance, however, I can tell you, I've known too many women who have used the time isn't right/too big/too disorganized/too many "issues" to avoid a significant relationship. Newsflash: men aren't perfect either, and some of them aren't expecting you to be perfect. This seems hard to believe at first (who can love these thighs?) but as much as the media makes us feel like we have to be perfect, we really don't. Think of the women in your life you love. How many of them do you love because of their size, or their super model good looks? How many wonderful couples do you know of where they aren't gorgeous, but they are happy? More importantly, how many gorgeous couples do you know of that are happy?

Just some thoughts. Being a woman is hard, but I think being a person is hard, too.

Remember, no one looks at you and thinks "she'd be good looking if she weighed 128 lbs." The numbers are between you and the scale alone. To everyone else, you aren't a number and to yourself you shouldn't be, either.
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Old 06-26-2008, 10:55 PM   #3
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Yes it's true the man in suspect, asking me out via the internet - and I do understand the internet is an acceptable way of meeting others - has flab on his tummy. I'd like to correct that. But here at the big "blah blah" age, and he is too, how much "fixin'" are we REALLY gonna do? I'm on a mission to seriously fix this flab for life, but I'm thinking how about "reality" like accepting healthy over rediculously thin like I used to be? Yes I feel my life is too disorganized, thus my plot to organize, to get thin, to find "me" before I date again... this book is so funny because one of the characters ie me, is so busy finding "herself" that she becomes so absurd, in her own world, impossible. Are we told to find ourselves? How many years for goodness sake do I need to be on this mission before I live again after a crappy@ marriage? Is three enough? If I REALLY find myself what would it take, would it be size 78 again, I did the really TOO SKINNY thing a few years ago and didn't really go live then... SO let's go live girls.
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Old 06-26-2008, 11:22 PM   #4
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A few years back when I was still smoking and on my way back up the scale I'll never forget a realization I made late one night. My family was all sleeping and I was on a binge.

I had several mixed drinks, ate until I was stuffed & I kept going outside to smoke until I couldn't breath and yet I still craved...what, I don't know. I remember going to a mirror and looking at myself asking WHAT IS IT YOU WANT? WHY CAN'T YOU GET YOUR FILL? I'm sorry to say that I still don't have the answer...I just started praying. Please take away this WANT and give me what i need.

I think the reason so many of us loose and gain, loose and gain is because we are never satisified. There is something we want, we just can't figure out what "that" is...food control is a good substute. It is one thing we can control in our lives. We can contol how much we over eat, or how much we don't eat. Unlike so many other things in life, it is the one thing we CAN control.
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Old 06-27-2008, 12:06 AM   #5
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Yes let's CONTROL what we eat, our weight BUT...
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Old 06-27-2008, 07:55 AM   #6
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urgh, yes. I'm going to be soo hot and excellent when I stop being so FAT oh wait I'm not actually overweight..but still.

Yeah, I do know what you mean.

And I didn't have a life when I was very very thin, I don't have a life now..its not to do with weight.
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Old 06-27-2008, 09:04 AM   #7
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I want to suggest that one's relationship with food does not have to go from "one addiction to another," regardless of what some novel says.

My relationship with food in the past was one of gratification. Did I want it? Yes? Then I ate it. Oh, I had done some weight loss, of course--like most folks here--but once the weight was lost, that was it. I'd go back to my habitual ways and then wonder why I'd gained again. DUH!

My relationship with food now is one of mindfulness. It's not "addicted to dieting" or swapping one thing for another. I am aware of my food choices, and I am aware that I make them deliberately. I am aware of what is in food and I eat or don't eat or measure it accordingly. Even when I am eating more than my "normal" plan, I am aware of what I am doing.

I just came back from vacation. It was great! On average, I ate above my maintenance level, and the results are what I would expect plus about 2 pounds of water weight. Did I know what I was doing? Yes! I did! I was not kidding myself in any way.

I got a lot of exercise as well--that's another thing. In the past exercise was an on again, off again thing. Now I look for exercise opportunities. The hotel had free passes to 24-Hour Fitness, and I went twice. Plus, I went for my walk every day, and we did a lot of hiking. Am I "addicted" to exercise? I don't think so. I brush my teeth twice a day, but it's not an addiction.

For a lot of folks, learning to pay attention to this stuff feels like an obsession simply because we're not used to paying attention to it. Do some people become truly obsessed? Of course they do. One can have issues with food as well as anything else. Does everyone? Nope. Just my opinion.

The issue of being sexually attractive doesn't come up for me, first because I'm in a relationship, and second because for me, being healthy is a much more important issue. I don't think I could care less about clothing sizes!

Jay
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Old 06-27-2008, 10:45 AM   #8
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I'm too lax about my dieting for it to be an addiction! haha

I think I'm in a pretty good spot mentally. I don't think my life is going to change at all when I'm fit, healthy and look good. I'll keep on doing the same stuff I do now. There's nothing in my life that I currently have on hold or won't do because of my weight. All I expect to gain from my weight loss is to feel better - to have more energy, to have a better self image, and to know that I'm doing everything I can to ensure a long active life.

Last edited by wisher : 06-27-2008 at 10:46 AM.
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Old 06-27-2008, 11:01 AM   #9
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Jay I agree with almost everything you said, but this line of yours really sort of confuses me ...

Quote:
The issue of being sexually attractive doesn't come up for me, first because I'm in a relationship,
Maybe I'm misunderstanding ... but are you saying that being in a relationship means you shouldn't worry about being sexually attractive?

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Old 06-27-2008, 11:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayEll View Post
For a lot of folks, learning to pay attention to this stuff feels like an obsession simply because we're not used to paying attention to it. Do some people become truly obsessed? Of course they do. One can have issues with food as well as anything else. Does everyone? Nope. Just my opinion.
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This is a very interesting observation. I read enthusiasm or passion as obsession, and label it a character defect. I need to feel engaged, otherwise why bother?
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Old 06-27-2008, 11:29 AM   #11
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My sister is not so fat (she just weight around 130lbs; i think), but she feel she is fat!
Sometimes, people around us affects our self confident.
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Old 06-27-2008, 12:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayEll View Post
I want to suggest that one's relationship with food does not have to go from "one addiction to another," regardless of what some novel says.

My relationship with food in the past was one of gratification. Did I want it? Yes? Then I ate it. Oh, I had done some weight loss, of course--like most folks here--but once the weight was lost, that was it. I'd go back to my habitual ways and then wonder why I'd gained again. DUH!

My relationship with food now is one of mindfulness. It's not "addicted to dieting" or swapping one thing for another. I am aware of my food choices, and I am aware that I make them deliberately. I am aware of what is in food and I eat or don't eat or measure it accordingly. Even when I am eating more than my "normal" plan, I am aware of what I am doing.

I just came back from vacation. It was great! On average, I ate above my maintenance level, and the results are what I would expect plus about 2 pounds of water weight. Did I know what I was doing? Yes! I did! I was not kidding myself in any way.

I got a lot of exercise as well--that's another thing. In the past exercise was an on again, off again thing. Now I look for exercise opportunities. The hotel had free passes to 24-Hour Fitness, and I went twice. Plus, I went for my walk every day, and we did a lot of hiking. Am I "addicted" to exercise? I don't think so. I brush my teeth twice a day, but it's not an addiction.

For a lot of folks, learning to pay attention to this stuff feels like an obsession simply because we're not used to paying attention to it. Do some people become truly obsessed? Of course they do. One can have issues with food as well as anything else. Does everyone? Nope. Just my opinion.

Jay
Great points, as usual, Jay!

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Old 06-27-2008, 02:41 PM   #13
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[quote=horsey;2243978] So girls, what is it? Are we swapping one addiction for another here? [quote]

My first experience of addiction was with alcohol. I held the false belief that I could not live without it. When I stopped drinking, I experienced profound physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms. I moved immediately into an addictive sexual relationship that I falsely believed I could not live without. When it was over (thank God), I experienced profound withdrawal symptons. So yes, I know from personal experience and observation of my dear friends in recovery, one can swap one addiction for another. It happens all the time.

I'm not so clear about food. If one doesn't eat, one really will die. I certainly think one can use food to affect chemical changes in the brain and body, similar to the way I used alcohol and sex. But I think most food and dieting problem thinking (not bulimia and anorexia) may be closer to psychological obsession than outright physical addiction. Just my opinion. The folks in Overeaters Anonymous probably wouldn't agree.

Personally, I just plain ate too much and didn't exercise.

I'm starting to feel so good from exercise, I think I could get addicted to it. I've read regular exercisers go through withdrawal if they stop. Now that is one addiction I could live with.
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Old 06-27-2008, 02:53 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayEll View Post
The issue of being sexually attractive doesn't come up for me, first because I'm in a relationship,
Being attractive for my husband is one of the BIGGEST things that keeps me motivated. His compliments drive me to do better and better. So I guess I don't understand at all why one would not care to be attractive just because they are in a relationship. I care more because I am in a relationship.
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Old 06-27-2008, 05:20 PM   #15
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I guess I should explain. I'm not out there actively looking to get involved, as I think the OP was talking about (dating etc.)--and my partner and I have been together 17 years. It's pretty clear that we are staying together, whether I'm heavy or light.

But there's another aspect to it, which is that I'm old enough that sexuality is just not all that interesting. I know some of you will find this impossible to imagine, but it happens. My main concerns have to do with whether I get diabetes, whether my joints will hold out, whether I'll develop heart disease, and so on... Will I make it to retirement, and if so, will I be able to enjoy it?

Jay
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