Is an eating disorder a disease?
Learn about eating disorders and how it effects the mind and body.
[MUSIC PLAYING] Are eating disorders, especially overeating, a disease? Very big question.
What we say about addiction is we say, usually-- I mean, the disease of addiction.
We usually say it's a physical addiction coupled with a psychological obsession.
That's what creates the dis-ease. And you have to treat both parts of that as well
as a third part. it's like a three-legged stool. The third part is the spiritual connection,
which often gets fully ignored, especially in medical treatment. Very few facilities do tend to it.
The Betty Ford Center where I lecture does spend a lot of time with spirituality and has some very,
I think, very capable spiritual counselors there. But the physical addiction part is usually,
an addiction to sugar and refined carbohydrates. Why? Because when we eat carbohydrates, we shoot up.
And then after that, we fall way below the line where we started
and we are in withdrawals. Well, what's the best thing to do when you're in withdrawals?
Eat some more. We learn to self medicate ourselves. To go up again for another 18 minutes and then just plummet back down.
So by the time we're at the latter stages of our disease, we're constantly up and down, up and down, up and down.
And even after we get into recovery, this then creates a lot of, sometimes, how we create our lives to be a little bit of a roller coaster.
In fact, I heard a guy say last week that before recovery, he was on a Merry-Go-Round and after recovery, he
was on a roller coaster. So that is about the physical part.
Then, there's a psychological obsession, which is we learn very little tolerance for pain
and discomfort. We don't see ourselves weathering things and walking through them without grabbing something quickly
to self-medicate. So we have this psychological need to kind of zone out because we don't know how.
We don't learn that this too shall pass if it's bad. And even if it's good, this too shall pass.
So coupling those two together-- the physical addiction and the psychological obsession and the spiritual vacuum--
all combine together to create disease, not feeling good, but also the dis-ease of compulsive eating.
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