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Liebe 06-04-2018 11:30 AM

Hello, Im new to the food addiction aspect( well maybe not , just other things were used to cope) . I am in AA and Al-Anon for other issues, but I have found that sobriety has led me to this new issue with food.
Ive always been overly concerned about my weight- grew up with parents who shamed me if I gained a few pounds.
I know sugar/carb cravings are common in an alcoholic brain. Im just not handling it well. Im ok for day or two- but I get so hungry I even over eat healthy foods. Exercise seems to increase my hunger. Ive been blowing it left and right, and I am really frustrated.

Sunflowerlife 06-04-2018 12:28 PM


Originally Posted by Liebe (Post 6916859)
Hello, Im new to the food addiction aspect( well maybe not , just other things were used to cope) . I am in AA and Al-Anon for other issues, but I have found that sobriety has led me to this new issue with food.
Ive always been overly concerned about my weight- grew up with parents who shamed me if I gained a few pounds.
I know sugar/carb cravings are common in an alcoholic brain. Im just not handling it well. Im ok for day or two- but I get so hungry I even over eat healthy foods. Exercise seems to increase my hunger. Ive been blowing it left and right, and I am really frustrated.

Hi Liebe- I'm glad you found this thread and I hope we can support each other on our journey for freedom. You say you get really hungry-is that because you are restricting? I know for me if I start undereating it only fuels the binges even more as it's part of the body's way of preserving itself. There's really no way around that. Or if you are eating high glycemic foods that can also affect your hunger. For me low carb is the only way to feel my real hunger- I found when I was high carb I was hungry and obsessing about food all the time.

Exercise tends to make me hungrier too so I just make sure my meals are really filling and that I really listen to my body and eat when hungry. How much are you exercising and what kind of exercise? I know cardio can definitely increase hunger but I find when I lift it's not as bad.

I'm really sorry you are suffering. I went to my first OA meeting last night and am really hopeful to kick this thing. I think it's great that you are already in AA and Al-anon and that you are sober. I'm happy to have you here...

Liebe 06-04-2018 12:59 PM

Thank you for the nice welcome. I appreciate your response.
Yes, I do tend to go carb too much.
Im frustrated with my cooking skills. I try new recipes and they never turn out well and my husband gets discouraged. He works a very physical job so he comes home and wants certain foods.
I want to increase protein- but I also have an iron disorder so I have to be careful with meat and certain food combos . Its not anemia- its the opposite- my body absorbs too much iron from my foods so I have to be careful. I dont like many of the other protein sources ( and I also have an egg allergy so thats not a good option). Just laying it all out. Maybe people on here have cookbooks they can recommend? Low card cookbooks? So many are hit and miss. I would still like tasty/satisfying food. I feel like Ive given up so many other things. I dont know if food types is the answer, portion control- a combo of both. Am I working out too much?
I exercise 5 days a week- 2 cardio days ( 20 min per session) and 3 interval training days with weights( 20-25 min per session) . I also have a very energetic dog who needs a daily walk aside from the exercise I mentioned- and thats about 20-25 min per walk. I have hypothryroid, and my levels are fine now- but since increasing my exercise ( doc suggestion)- Im finding its just not coming off. If anything I have gained- and its not muscle- it goes right to my mid section.
Im upset because I dont want to trade one addiction for another. I did that for many years with substance abuse. I am working a 12 step program- I just cant curb this food thing. It really grabbed me. Like I mentioned above, I gave up so much . I never thought it would be with food too.

Sunflowerlife 06-04-2018 02:12 PM


Originally Posted by Liebe (Post 6916943)
Thank you for the nice welcome. I appreciate your response.
Yes, I do tend to go carb too much.
Im frustrated with my cooking skills. I try new recipes and they never turn out well and my husband gets discouraged. He works a very physical job so he comes home and wants certain foods.
I want to increase protein- but I also have an iron disorder so I have to be careful with meat and certain food combos . Its not anemia- its the opposite- my body absorbs too much iron from my foods so I have to be careful. I dont like many of the other protein sources ( and I also have an egg allergy so thats not a good option). Just laying it all out. Maybe people on here have cookbooks they can recommend? Low card cookbooks? So many are hit and miss. I would still like tasty/satisfying food. I feel like Ive given up so many other things. I dont know if food types is the answer, portion control- a combo of both. Am I working out too much?
I exercise 5 days a week- 2 cardio days ( 20 min per session) and 3 interval training days with weights( 20-25 min per session) . I also have a very energetic dog who needs a daily walk aside from the exercise I mentioned- and thats about 20-25 min per walk. I have hypothryroid, and my levels are fine now- but since increasing my exercise ( doc suggestion)- Im finding its just not coming off. If anything I have gained- and its not muscle- it goes right to my mid section.
Im upset because I dont want to trade one addiction for another. I did that for many years with substance abuse. I am working a 12 step program- I just cant curb this food thing. It really grabbed me. Like I mentioned above, I gave up so much . I never thought it would be with food too.


I totally understand being upset and feeling like you've already given up so much. I feel the same way right now and am in the process of really grieving and accepting the fact that if I want to stop binging I can never have sugar again.

I'm sorry about your health issues- I just don't know how low carb would affect hypothyroidism. I know it can help those with Hashimoto's but I have read mixed things about low carb and what you have.

Since you have to be careful with meat can you eat beans instead? I am a vegetarian (former vegan) and my happiest when it came to cooking was when I was cooking vegan, especially using my Instant Pot. It was so easy and fun! Can you do more bean dishes and would your husband like that? I can definitely recommend vegan cookbooks as I have a good amount! Just let me know.

I am part of a ton of groups on FB if you use that at all- a bunch of plant based instant pot ones which I don't use anymore since I can't eat most beans on low carb and then a vegetarian and even a vegan keto group. I find the FB groups really great- I wonder if you can find one that has recipes you would like?? Also, maybe go to your library and browse the cookbooks? Much better than purchasing and being stuck with something you don't like.

I hope I have helped- I also train 5 -7 days a week so I don't see what you are doing as too much although I don't know how it affects your thyroid so maybe it's the medicine that is increasing your appetite- is that a known side effect??

Either way I hope you can find some peace with all of this. Let me know if I can help in any other way...

Liebe 06-04-2018 03:03 PM

Thank you for your empathy. A lot of my friends dont understand- food is such a central part of getting together. So different than drugs or alcohol- you can abstain from those- not from food, and there is a lot of social pressure to eat when with people.I have to admit that sometimes I eat out of sheer boredom too! I dont want to start using it when Im alone as a coping mechanism either.
Yes, my thyroid disorder is Hashimotos. I dont know if the med increases appetite or not- I find when my dose is increased, I loose a bit of weight, then level out. This time I leveled out on the higher end.
Good idea about the library. I dont want to buy one more useless cookbook. Im one of those people who dont have a Facebook. I know I miss out on some good groups.
You have helped- good to know you train in a similar manner. I do like to exercise because it provides a great stress relief for me. I need that release and thats how I view exercise.
Thank you again !

Sunflowerlife 06-04-2018 06:11 PM

8:08 checkin

First really good food day in a long time. I was occupied with painting the living room so food was just not ok my mind. My husband made dinner tonight and It was great- low carb “rice”, broccolini and tempeh. Super filling. I didn’t touch a drop of sugar or flour. About to do some reiki on my son which seems to help him fall asleep. And then bedtime for me :)

venuscat 06-04-2018 06:21 PM

:) lovely... ♥

Arpeggioh 06-04-2018 07:25 PM

I've always said that food issues are way more complicated than addiction to drugs and alcohol because, as you said, we all have to eat; we can't just give it up like smoking or drinking. Well, we could, but then we'd like, die and stuff...

I'm diabetic, and spent my first sober year eating like I'd never heard of diabetes; when I finally checked my blood sugar and had labs done in April, they were grotesquely and dangerously high (well, duh!) and I got scared straight, begged my MD to put off prescribing insulin injections because I'd seen the light and was a changed man, and I was quite serious! The day I finally checked my glucose, I threw away PopTarts, frozen hash browns, macaroni, totally purged my food supply. Living alone, it's pretty easy to simply ban certain foods from my home...

...and within a week, I no longer craved the sugar; I still crave potatoes and noodles, but I walk past cookies and donuts with barely a second glance. I wish it had worked that way with booze, I'd have gotten sober thirty years ago!

I think us alkies have some pretty twisted metabolism; it's no damn wonder we have food issues!

Sugar is evil, man...potatoes are just...rude, maybe? At any rate, I'm avoiding both of them, and only really missing one of them.

Liebe 06-04-2018 07:40 PM

"Rude potatoes"....I like that.
I was thinking since I posted, just how often I eat carbs. Ive been doing a baked potato every week ( cause others in the house want it)- mashed potatoes with steak ( cause others in the house want it)- then I WANT IT - darn it. Its pretty tough for me to not taste what I prepare- tasting becomes eating a more than light serving of it.
Geeeze.
I gotta get real here.
This is not easy. Im already worried about failure.

Sunflowerlife 06-05-2018 03:30 AM


Originally Posted by Arpeggioh (Post 6917210)
I've always said that food issues are way more complicated than addiction to drugs and alcohol because, as you said, we all have to eat; we can't just give it up like smoking or drinking. Well, we could, but then we'd like, die and stuff...

I'm diabetic, and spent my first sober year eating like I'd never heard of diabetes; when I finally checked my blood sugar and had labs done in April, they were grotesquely and dangerously high (well, duh!) and I got scared straight, begged my MD to put off prescribing insulin injections because I'd seen the light and was a changed man, and I was quite serious! The day I finally checked my glucose, I threw away PopTarts, frozen hash browns, macaroni, totally purged my food supply. Living alone, it's pretty easy to simply ban certain foods from my home...

...and within a week, I no longer craved the sugar; I still crave potatoes and noodles, but I walk past cookies and donuts with barely a second glance. I wish it had worked that way with booze, I'd have gotten sober thirty years ago!

I think us alkies have some pretty twisted metabolism; it's no damn wonder we have food issues!

Sugar is evil, man...potatoes are just...rude, maybe? At any rate, I'm avoiding both of them, and only really missing one of them.

Well that is really kinda awesome Arp! You knew what you had to do and you did it- I think it's harder for me because I don't have any physical evidence that I am doing harm other than how awful/moody I feel and you would think that is enough but it's just not. Of course I have no idea what I've done to my gut although I don't seem to have issues with digestion I often wonder how I have put my poor stomach/colon through so much over the years. I know sugar can greatly affect gut flora and I do have skin issues but was told this was due to topical allergies. I do wonder if any of it is linked to my gut. I do have massively high blood sugar the day after a binge but my dad, a physician, says that is normal (I didn't tell him the binging part, just that I had eaten sugar.) Like diabetes level. When I go back to eating low carb/high fat- it drops back down to 95-100 (dawn effect, I still have high bs in the morning.)

Potatoes are rude...I love that! And yes, our sugar sensitivities are totally linked to our bodies' inability to process sugar the same way as others. Afterall alcohol is sugar- bread turns into sugar and cake is well...sugar! Same brain, same problem.

You are evidence that if we want something we can do it. You inspire me. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us.

Sunflowerlife 06-05-2018 03:34 AM


Originally Posted by Liebe (Post 6917225)
"Rude potatoes"....I like that.
I was thinking since I posted, just how often I eat carbs. Ive been doing a baked potato every week ( cause others in the house want it)- mashed potatoes with steak ( cause others in the house want it)- then I WANT IT - darn it. Its pretty tough for me to not taste what I prepare- tasting becomes eating a more than light serving of it.
Geeeze.
I gotta get real here.
This is not easy. Im already worried about failure.

Gosh, don't think about it as failure Liebe- it's a process just like quitting alcohol was. It's not going to happen overnight. Think of it as babysteps and just choose one change to make at a time. I have had a lot of practice making my son's lunch for example without eating the peanut butter and jelly crust I cut off (man it looks so good.) Now I just throw it away without thinking twice but that took a long time to get to that point!

You can do this. No pressure, just start with something small...

Also, have you tried intermittent fasting?

Sunflowerlife 06-05-2018 03:35 AM

5:35 am

I commit to 24 hours of food sobriety, free from sugar, flour and compulsive overeating! I'll check in later :)

Snufkin 06-05-2018 03:45 AM

You guys are so inspiring to me, but I don't think I'm ready for a major change in my diet because of my on-going struggle with fighting urges to drink...

BUT I want to cut out most of the nastiness I consume every day in large quantities, so cans and cans of red bull and coke, jelly beans, skittles, crisps and chocolate. I think it would help to reduce my mindless snacking...

10:45 am
I commit to 24 h without all the nastiness mentioned above. Day 1. Let's do this!

Arpeggioh 06-05-2018 04:22 AM

Liebe -- I was also planning to "correct" the language in your last post! It can't be as simple as failure, way too harsh of a term. Cooking potatoes for your family is a huge temptation; if someone left a hot bowl of mashed potatoes in front of me with a salt shaker and a stick of butter within reach...hoo boy, gimme a big spoon and leave me alone!

Carbs are complicated; we need them to survive. Potatoes are healthier than candy. Cooking for others is hard. Over-sampling is better than bingeing. Trying to change is better than giving up. "Failure" is relative!

Keep making better choices, and you'll actually be succeeding...

Arpeggioh 06-05-2018 04:37 AM

Oh, I forgot to holler at Snuf!

As I mentioned, I gave myself a full pass on my sugar consumption for an entire year after getting sober. I'm not recommending it by any means, but you're entirely right that your immediate focus needs to be on abstinence from alcohol. It will kill you a lot faster than Skittles...

I'm certainly not proposing you toss out your pledge today; that snack list is obviously not a healthy one. But please keep your priorities clear. If a small bag of jelly beans will keep you sober, then jelly beans it is. With a broccoli chaser!

(I knew a drunk who chased down his daily 750ML of vodka with green tea, in the interest of his health. I do believe he's still alive, so hey, who knows?!)

gatorman 06-05-2018 04:44 AM

Another 24 please!

Purplrks3647 06-05-2018 05:41 AM

Hi everyone :wave:


Originally Posted by Snufkin (Post 6915690)
Well, getting off alcohol is my top priority now, so Im trying to forgive myself all the binge episodes, but I would love to be focused on a healthy relationship with food, too

^^^I'm in the same boat as you, Snuf ^^^

I don't cook....the place I rent has a small fridge/microwave so I eat mostly processed foods and I've even slacked from going to the gym! :yuck:

Great thread! I would love to join :c017:

Ringo123 06-05-2018 08:24 AM

Hello All,

Food was my first love. Age 7, I manipulated and lied to get extra food. Discovering alcohol a handful of years later sidetracked me with the food for awhile.

Got sober first (1986). I figured I had to quit what was killing me the fastest. Quitting sugar and bingeing was a lot harder so my OA recovery was spotty at best. Went from compulsive overeater to bulimic in '87/'88. Bulimia recovery date is Jan 1, 2002 and very happy/grateful to report that overall food abstinence date is Nov 28, 2005.

Would love to discuss further and be a support to anyone. Hang in there!

You are worth whatever time, energy, and discomfort it takes to recover.

Purplrks3647 06-05-2018 08:28 AM

I've been neglecting water intake, so I'm making myself drink water before having more coffee. Baby steps!

Sunflowerlife 06-05-2018 08:37 AM


Originally Posted by Snufkin (Post 6917440)
You guys are so inspiring to me, but I don't think I'm ready for a major change in my diet because of my on-going struggle with fighting urges to drink...

BUT I want to cut out most of the nastiness I consume every day in large quantities, so cans and cans of red bull and coke, jelly beans, skittles, crisps and chocolate. I think it would help to reduce my mindless snacking...

10:45 am
I commit to 24 h without all the nastiness mentioned above. Day 1. Let's do this!

I totally agree that sobriety comes first~ start small! Maybe switch out the Redbull and coke first. It's all about making small changes!
Have a wonderful day Snuf!


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