We are all addicted to something: hobbies, work, sports, music, even sex. When we are passionately addicted there is no end to what we can achieve. The energy that surrounds someone who is dedicated is contagious and can change people’s lives – including your own.
However, we can get addicted to destructive activities, including recreational drugs, alcohol, and certainly food. Stealing, shopping, gambling, cutting, and other behaviors affect specific brain chemicals in the same way that positive addictions work. Whenever we do something repetitiously, pathways are formed in our brain that signal cravings, and can be rewarded by that sense of gratification.
Food addiction works the same way: when my patients tell me that they are addicted to coffee, chips, or chocolate, I know they are telling the truth. The first time you reach for that coffee, sugary food, or drug you will feel amazing. Your feel-good brain chemicals (mainly dopamine and serotonin) increase dramatically. This feeling will imprint a memory in your brain, encoded in your biology long after the high wears off.
The next time you need something energizing, your brain remembers how it felt and will send powerful impulses out to get it. You cannot control your biology, so you will end up doing just about anything to get whatever makes you tick. You may find yourself in 7-11 at midnight with your hands full of ice cream containers or emptying your kids’ candy stash. Whatever your vice, you find yourself doing these things in a fog and first coming back to reality after the hit… promising yourself that you will never do it again. Tomorrow is a new day, a fresh start… you will come clean. This is what you tell yourself time and time again, as days turn into months that turn into years.
The worst part is that a food addiction is hard to beat. The “cold turkey” approach won’t work. The fact is, we need to eat to survive. The key to breaking a food addiction is to rebalance your brain.
Nobody gets slim by sheer willpower, staying slim takes brainpower! At PATH we recognize the complex nature of food addictions and work with nutritionists who are trained in minimizing cravings through nutrient therapy, coaching strategies, and state of the art BEAM testing to determine which brain chemicals are responsible for your food addiction. That way we are able to determine which combination of medications will take the edge off your cravings. Then we can work together to retrain your brain with the right nutritional approach for your specific issue.
You can change your brain today and cut the chains of addiction! Give us a call and let us help so that you can look and feel younger than ever.
Eric R. Braverman, M.D.
Dr. Braverman is a Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Brandeis University and NYU Medical School, did brain research at Harvard Medical School, and trained at an affiliate of Yale Medical School. He is acknowledged worldwide as an expert in brain-based diagnosis and treatment, and he lectures to and trains doctors in anti-aging medicine.