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Food addiction

Food addiction is a condition in which an individual has an intense craving and persistent compulsive behavior towards certain foods, leading to an inability to control food intake and resulting in negative consequences such as weight gain, decreased physical and mental health, and social problems. This addiction can develop due to various factors such as genetic predisposition, changes in the brain caused by repetitive consumption of highly palatable foods, and psychological factors such as stress, anxiety, and depression.

What causes food addiction?

While we do not know the exact cause, it was found that the brain mechanisms in people with food addiction were similar to those in people with substance dependence, such as drug addicts.

Is there an official diagnosis of food addiction?

While food addiction is commonly believed to be a cause in many people gaining weight, there is currently no official diagnosis of "food addiction". However, using the concept of addiction as it relates to drugs, certain tools were developed such as the Yale 25 question based food addiction scale that can help in understanding a person's level of addiction to food. Using the Yale Food Addiction Scale (YFAS).

Fastfood addiction

What foods are commonly associated with food addiction?

Foods most notably identified by YFAS to cause food addiction were those high in fat and high in sugar.

What can I do to determine if I might be addicted to food?

You can use a self-reported standardized tool was created by a Yale researcher, Ashley Gearhardt, called Yale Food Addiction Scale (YFAS). to determine those individuals at high risk for food addiction, regardless of weight.

How common is food addiction?

Food addiction is very common and pervasive. The mean prevalence of food addiction is 19.7%, being more common in women, obese individuals, people >35 years and patients with already established eating disorders (binge eating disorder, bulimia). [caption id="attachment_4339" align="alignleft" width="1024"]W8MD Staff W8MD Staff[/caption]

What are the symptoms of food addiction?

The most common symptom is the 'persistent desire or repeated unsuccessful attempts to quit' Take the Yale Food Addiction Scale survey to determine if you might be addicted to food. This survey asks about your eating habits in the past year. People sometimes have difficulty controlling their intake of certain foods such as: - Sweets like ice cream, chocolate, doughnuts, cookies, cake, candy, ice cream - Starches like white bread, rolls, pasta, and rice - Salty snacks like chips, pretzels, and crackers - Fatty foods like steak, bacon, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, pizza, and French fries.

Sugary drinks

Sugary drinks like soda pop.

Other questions

When the following questions ask about “CERTAIN FOODS” please think of ANY food similar to those listed in the food group or ANY OTHER foods you have had a problem with in the past year.

Seeking help

It is important to seek help from a medical professional to treat food addiction as it can lead to serious health problems such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. W8MD Weight Loss, Sleep & Medspa offers comprehensive and personalized weight loss programs to help individuals overcome food addiction and achieve long-term weight loss success.

W8MD Weight Loss, Sleep & Medspa Centers

W8MD Weight Loss, Sleep & Medspa Centers is a network of medical centers located in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and surrounding areas that provide comprehensive care for weight loss, sleep disorders, and aesthetic treatments.

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