FAT & UNHAPPY: How Strong is Food’s Grip?

Does food have a grip on you, or do you have a grip on food?

I can’t tell you how many people tell me they are so sick of themselves. Sick of not controlling their food intake and weight. Food clearly has a grip on their life and they are eating themselves unhappy. Today we’re going to dive deep into the seriousness of letting food control your life. Get ready, because this isn’t going to be pretty!

Gluttony: to gulp down or swallow, means over-indulgence and over-consumption of food, drink, or wealth.

You don’t have to be FAT to struggle with food

When I think of gluttony, I think of seriously overweight people  like “Fat Bastard” in the Austin Powers movie. However, you don’t have to be morbidly obese to struggle with gluttony. Just ask Steve and I. We’ve seriously gulped down hideous amounts of food at times, and not once did we ever push away from the table feeling good about it. And we make a boatload of excuses to match the boatload of food we consume.

“We deserve it”. “We’ve been training so hard”. “At least it was all healthy”. But no matter what our lame excuses are, too much is too much – and it’s not healthy.

We humans like to rationalize pretty much everything. We’re the first people to judge someone else’s “sin” and then make excuses for our own. Of course, most of us don’t think of ourselves as gluttons, but if you are gulping down too much food, then you are indeed a glutton. Sorry, but it’s true.

If you can’t control it…

Sure, it would be super easy to look at someone addicted to crack and think “wow, I can’t believe someone would do that to themselves”, yet you maybe addicted to food. Just because food is legal, doesn’t mean we should abuse our bodies with it.

This is not a fun topic, but I think it’s important to address. Coming from a strong Christian home, I was taught to take care of my body – and treat it like a temple. However, I’ve treated my body like a saloon, garbage dump, and smoke stack in the past. I would have NEVER brought some of the things I put in my body into a church. Ironically, when I was the least disciplined with what went into my mouth, I was also the least disciplined in other areas of my life.

Unfortunately, it’s easy to target alcohol, cigarettes and drugs as the evil things you should get rid of – but what makes us think we can continue overeating and not practicing self-control with the rest of our life?

It’s not about Vanity

Interestingly enough, most of us know better. We know we should be working out and eating healthier, but we don’t do it. Did you know that just knowing what to do and not doing it is wrong? I’m not just suggesting it is not good for you, I’m saying it’s flat wrong.

“It is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.” James 4:17

You don’t have to believe in God to benefit from scripture – and I believe most of us want to do the “right” thing. I think the problem lies in that we don’t think of eating poorly as right or wrong, but just a matter of vanity or choice. I mean, there are no food police giving out tickets for poor eating. We have the “right” to eat however we want – right? We may have that right, but that doesn’t make it right.

Maybe, if you’re struggling with self-control around food, you should treat the problem less like a vanity thing, and more as a right and wrong thing. You probably know what’s best for you, now you just need to start doing it.

Food Addiction: 

1.) Decreases self esteem
2.) Increases jealousy 
3.) Causes us to hide (especially from cameras)
4.) Makes us tired and lazy
5.) Makes us look and feel unattractive, which can be harmful in relationships
6.) Makes us physically ill
7.) Can be expensive (dining out/cocktails)
8.) Makes us unhappy
9.) Causes depression and added stress
10.) Makes us insecure and lack confidence in our work

If those are just a FEW things unhealthy eating habits can do to our lives, then why would even hesitate to get help and get healthy? It’s time to get healthy and happy again!

NOTE: If you think for one minute I’m judging you, or anyone struggling with eating – think again. We ALL struggle. I struggle. If you put a basket of nachos in front of me, I’ll out-eat any of you if I don’t practice self-control – and even my best self-control will still be overeating I guarantee!! The only difference is, I may go run it off. This is something I will continue to improve and manage for the rest of my life. When it comes to my body, I don’t want to look bad as much as I don’t want to disappoint God by mistreating this body he gave me. I want to be a good steward of my physical body as well as my life. When I’m done with this life, I want Him to say “Well done”. I will never be perfect, and I will always fail, but I will never stop trying – and I think that’s all He asks for. :)

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About Bonnie Pfiester

Fitness Columnist and Lifestyle Coach, Resident Trainer for Designer Whey, Fitness Advisor for FitStudio, powered by Sears, FitFluential Ambassador and Owner of Max Fitness Club, home of BCx Boot Camp in Vero Beach, Florida.

Posted on April 5, 2012, in Diet & Nutrition Tips, PFOODIE and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 12 Comments.

  1. LOVE IT!!!!
    a few years ago I designed a 31 days of inspiration bible based health/wellness ebook and at the time we did conference calls to and it was a wake up call for many…
    yes our bodies ARE His temple…have to think about what we do to them and what we put in them…I’m as guilty as anyone with overindulging or not taking care of it…working/improving on that daily…

  2. This post was written for me today as I am on the couch feeling sluggish, tired and bloated. I am going through some tough stuff these days and I am eating ( and drinking) for comfort. It doesn’t comfort at all, just makes me feel worse. I’ll get my lazy a** to the gym and work it off!!!

  3. Hi Bonnie. You’re absolutely right when you say that you don’t have to be fat to struggle with food. Have you ever read “Women, Food, and God” by Geneen Roth? It’s a fabulous book. Geneen would agree with you a lot. Thanks for your candid post!
    Feel free to check my article, “Giving Up the Food Fight” at my blog: http://www.100poundsin1year.wordpress.com. Shelby

  4. This was so awesome, Bonnie! At 41, I am fit, and I have never allowed myself to get more than a few pounds overweight, People think I’ve got it all together and don’t have the struggles they do, but they are so wrong. I have ridden this rollercoaster with food my entire life. I grew up eating unhealthy food and had to give up a lot of things I loved when I chose this lifestyle. Still, I love things that I know are horrible for me and sometimes I give in. It drives me crazy at times emotionally, and makes me feel like a failure. I have wondered if it will be this way my entire life. But I just have to ask God for help and take it a day at a time. This week, my family and I are on a juice fast, throwing all kinds of vegetables (along with some fruit) into the juicer and making pitchers at a time. I’m still having eggs and some protein shakes too, but nothing else. Feels amazing and all my cravings are gone. Sometimes when things get out of control, you have to do something extreme temporarily. Don’t mean to ramble, I just really appreciate your honesty here. So many people in the fitness industry act like they do have it all together and people can’t relate to them. Thanks for admitting it’s tough for you too!

  5. You know, I often explain to my husband that I feel as though food addiction is FAR worse than crack or being addicted to cigarettes (which is arguably a harder addiction than any other drug).

    If you think about it…you don’t need crack or cigarettes to live. While your brain might think you do because of the physical addiction, you don’t. You can quit and actually live an even better life without them.

    In terms of food addiction, you MUST eat to live. You have to face food day in and day out in order to live. Without it, you’d eventually starve to death. With that said, food addiction is far harder in my eyes, because instead of quitting cold turkey, you must learn balance and express self-control. You need to learn to decipher how much is too much. Imagine telling a smoker, “You can only have three smokes a day, and try and stick to natural & chemical free.” I guarantee you’d hear, “Yeah. Really funny.”

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