Do You Play the "Food Blame" Game?
By Joan Kent, PhD
Does your eating ever go off-track? Do you sometimes eat more than you "should" or foods that you "shouldn't"?
Here are 3 questions on eating behaviors.
Who (Whom!) Do You Blame When Your Eating Goes Off the Mark?
I always blamed my mother. She pushed food on me relentlessly, whether I wanted it or not. When I didn't want it, she told everyone I was a picky eater.
I wasn't a picky eater. I was just constantly pushed – even forced – to eat food I didn't want. It never gave me a chance to be hungry.
So eating food I didn't need originated with my mother.
My mom tried to sway me in other ridiculous ways – like making me afraid of dogs – and those didn't work. Why did I let this food thing in?
Taking 100% responsibility means not blaming my mother for any mindless or unnecessary eating. I made the behavior mine, for better or worse.
Let's explore 2 other eating behavior questions.
WHAT Do You Blame?
When it's difficult to resist desserts or other junk you know isn't good for you, WHAT do you blame?
I always blamed my sugar addiction.
Well over 25 years ago, I was writing, reading (in various science journals), and teaching my clients about sugar addiction.
That was way before everyone started comparing sugar to cocaine or heroin, or saying sugar was the most addictive of all.
My sugar addiction was obvious (to me) many years before that – before anyone even acknowledged sugar as addictive. Many people smirked when I mentioned it.
Sugar addiction was my scapegoat – the reason for any struggle I had with food.
But taking 100% responsibility means I can't do that anymore. As the world's foremost(!) Recovered Sugar Addict, I know my recovery is the point.
It eliminates my old excuse completely.
So when my eating is off-track – for me that's usually about quantity when I'm stressed, not junk I shouldn't have – I don't have my sugar addiction to blame anymore.
It's all about me. I have to deal with stress in other ways.
What have you been blaming for any bad – or odd – food habits you may have?
WHEN Do You Blame?
Once you've identified WHO and WHAT you blame for your eating "excursions," the next step is to identify WHEN you resort to blaming those people and things.
This may go a bit further than simply recognizing your triggers for out-of-control eating.
It's helpful to know that you binge eat (or eat the wrong foods) under stress, for example. But does stress instantly trigger blame for you, a finger-pointing response?
Stress may not always push you to get into blame, even if it does push you into out-of-control eating.
I've noticed that I get into blaming when I feel somehow victimized – say, when one thing after another is going wrong, and it feels as if it will never end.
That's when my other blame patterns come up: blaming my mother for pushing food on me, or blaming my sugar addiction for making me so sensitive to certain foods that I have to be overly rigorous about controlling what I eat. Yeah, poor me.
You know your Who and your What. Can you identify your When?
How will you take responsibility for your eating behaviors? And how may I help you?
If you'd like help with any aspect of your eating, including exploring or ending food habits that have been standing in the way of your health and your moods, perfect. That's what I do. Just visit www.LastResortNutrition.com and grab your free Empowered Eating Consult. Find out how easy it is to get foods working for you, not against you. Small changes yield big results!
Brought to you by Dr. Joan Kent, best-selling author of Stronger Than Sugar: 7 Simple Steps to Defeat Sugar Addiction, Lift Your Mood, and Transform Your Health.