In XXI century, among all political issues, the world has faced the challenge having the impact on the significant amount of people in several countries. This challenge is called obesity and related to it food addiction. While the issue of obesity origins and consequences have been already considered properly by the scientists, the notion of food addiction and similar to it eating addiction have not been subjects of the researches and investigations. In this respect, the author analyzes the notion of eating addiction, its main features, origins and impact on the teens and other groups of society. Furthermore, the symptoms of eating addiction are considered align with the effect that certain foods exercise over the individual's brain activity. Despite the fact that this issue has not been considered enough by the experts, the author succeeded to gather necessary information which present the notion of eating addiction in full.
Meanwhile, the paper proposes to consider the line between ordinary preferences in food and eating disorder in form of eating addiction. In the majority cases, the person is not aware when it is necessary to turn for the professional help. At the same time, the individual can not understand that constant overeating of some products may fall within the meaning of eating addiction as the type of the disorder having the origins in the psychological level.
Finally, the author in the paper provides the solutions and possible instruments that may assist in the prevention of the eating disorder. Given the fact that this issue is not considered enough, the author bases on the research data provided by the experts of Yale University.
The increasing debate about the obesity and the related food addiction is the top priority issue for American society nowadays. However, the question of the difference between food addiction and eating addiction has not been considered properly. For the purposes of this research paper, the eating addiction should be understood as the disordered attitude to certain kinds of foods that are out of control of the individual. According to the recent research conducted by the professor of Yale University, approximately 10% of the general population of the world have some kinds of food addiction to certain products (The Huffington Post, 2016). In this research, the experts used the questionnaire applied to the participants and evaluated the comparison of food addiction to alcoholic one. At the end of the expertise, it was concluded that the environment of food addiction has not been investigated yet, while its origin is based on the conditions of livelihood. Nowadays, the individual is surrounded with overwhelming amount of food, irrespective of the fact whether this food is junk or healthy.
Besides, the same study on behalf of John Menzies, a University of Edinburgh, confirms that there is no substance in the foods that may cause the addiction similar to alcoholic. In this respect, the food industry can not be blamed for the increasing eating addiction spreading the world. Furthermore, the research highlights that the food addiction may be the result of the constant overeating for long lasting period without any control. To some extent, the eating addiction may be regarded as the main reason of the obesity disaster happening in several countries. However there is no evidence and supplementary study that may confirm this position (The Huffington Post, 2016).
Talking about the comparison of food addiction with eating addiction, the latter is surrounded about the attitude of the person to certain kind of foods. Simultaneously, food addiction refers to the products and food itself. With respect to eating addiction, the attention should be paid to the choices of the individual and his preferences to food. In order to evaluate the reasons and other features of eating addiction, the research should be devoted to the evaluation of the ways the person makes choices with respect to the food.
Besides, some experts stand for the position that the eating or food addiction is not an appropriate term for the identification of individual's preference to food. The addiction should be used only with relation to the drugs abuse, alcoholic usage, etc., while there is no reason to use the word 'addiction' for food. This statement is supported by the data in the research that fold can not cause the similar processes in the person's brain as it can be done by alcoholic drinks (Hebebrand, 2014). Therefore, eating addiction should be treated as the kind of behavior taken by individual in order to show his preferences. This attitude may be overcomed only in case person decides to eat less amount of certain product.
Meanwhile, the other research proves that state bodies of every state and the food industry deepens the situation by increasing the spread of eating addiction. By virtue of advertisements, production of new products and attraction campaigns, the representatives of food industry push the society to to try every new produc released. Moreover, the constant advertisements on TV and other mass media leads to the situation when person feels uncomfortable without eating any kind of food. Irrespective of the actions of some governments by restricting the import or production of particular goods, only person may decide what product he should take. To go further, it should be said that food addiction in general is the constant eating in significant volumes of food within short period of time than ordinary person may consume. Although, nowadays there is no research that investigates when and in what manner the eating addiction arises (The Huffington Post, 2016).
The another study useful for the completion of this research identifies that the issue of food and eating addiction draws the attention throughout the recent years due to the fact that scientists are trying to understand all the factors causing the obesity in order to develop the instruments aimed to combat it. The only definition of food addiction was given by researcher Randolph and according to this notion, it should be regarded as the specific adaptation to the foods afterwards the person becomes sensitive and shows the evidence of symptoms attributive to the form of addiction. The majority of the experts believe that definition of 'eating addiction' should be used rather than 'food addiction' due to the fact the the first notion implies the analysis of the behaviour. Besides, the reasons of this process are referred to the activity of the food industry companies which are trying to increase the volumes of sales and produce new products at low cost (Ho, Arbour and Hambley, 2011). In this regard, it is quite difficult to consider the real substances of the product irrespective of the fact that companies provide the document including all the elements pertaining to each good. Finally, there is no completed research as to the relation of the food consumption to the overeating and consequent eating addiction due to the fact that these researches have been initiated recently (Blundell, Coe and Hooper, 2014).
The recent study conducted, contains the conclusions that the vast access to the variety of foods lead to the formation of addictive behaviour. The data suggests that such kind of behaviour creates the basis for the development of eating addiction. In this respect, if the person has the restrictive access to the variety of foods than it is possible to avoid the eating disorder and addiction in future. Furthermore, such tendency has appeared to exist only since XXI century when the diversity of the foods rocks (Hebebrand, 2014).
In contrast, the questionnaire held by the Yale Food Addiction Scale was devoted to the consideration of the similarities in behaviour of the participants in order to define the pre-requisitions of the eating addiction and similar behaviour formation. Although, the experts were not able to identify the substance of abuse and classify food addiction under the category of Substance Use Disorder. However, this investigation is valuable as it contains data about the preferences to foods of certain categories of people. For example, females in the majority cases are subject to the eating addiction than males (The Huffington Post, 2016).
Meanwhile, the food may take the form of addiction by creation the desire to consume forbidden food. Another research provides the evidence that the consumption of foods that are not allowed, makes person to feel better. The same situation applies to children which are trying to overcome parents' order. In this respect, person does not think about the consequenced of the forbidden food consumption that may affect in future the health and body state. By taking food in great volume whithin short period of time, the person is not able to predict the effects that will have impact through the long lasting period of time. Furthremore, the research evidences that in the majority cases the persons having sympthoms of eating addiction, usually try to refuse of consumption of certain kind of foods everyday (Blundell, Coe and Hooper, 2014). However, these efforts are not effective as the persons can not give up the overeating. Simultaneously, such products as chocolate, chips, ice cream and other goods with high amount of fats and sugar have the influence on the brain by causing the addiction or similar effect. This process may be compared to the alcoholic concumption effect, while the attempts of the individual to refuse of the abovementioned goods will have the features of withdrawal. Menwhile, the researchers came to the conclusion that eating addiction have the psychological origin and can be managed by every individual withouth any harm to the health (Hebebrand, 2014).
The other study proposes to consider the symptoms of eating addiction (Ho, Arbour and Hambley, 2011). Among the most popular are the following:
Person is constantly thinking about food or certain product. This way of living influences the ordinary life by the fact that person is thinking about the future dinner or other opportunity to have a snack;
Individual refers to attempts to stop consumption of particular product but he is not able to succeed. In this case the person should request the professional help to be provided;
Person tries not to show to others that he suffers from the eating addiction in such a way that he consumes food alone. In case of such situation, person usually lies about the volume of consumed food or the products that have been eaten by the individual;
Individual can not control the amount of food so that the person is not aware when it is necessary to stop. This line of behaviour may cause the obesity or drug addiction due to the fact that person will seek for the instruments that may help to reveal all the food consumed;
In majority cases the person eats not due to the feeling of being hungry while just because of the desire to take the snack with this particular product.
Although, there are some instruments investigated by the researches that may assist in the combating of eating addiction (Blundell, Coe and Hooper, 2014). Given the fact that in majority cause the addiction to food arises in the psychological level, the experts propose the following actions to be
Pass the test developed by the Yale University researchers for the identification of the relationship to food and te attitude;
Review the timetable of the ordinary day and plan the snacks taking place at the same time every day so that the body can get accustomed to the regime;
Prepare the list of foods that create addiction and leads to the lose of control over the volume of consumption. This list should be given to the surrounding people so that they could exercise control over the foods the person take (Blundell, Coe and Hooper, 2014).
These actions in general may create the basis for the person which has the aim to combat the food addiction. If this issue is ignored and will continue take place in the life of the person, then it will be difficult to find measures assiting in the elimination of the disorder.
In contrast, other experts are loyal to the position that food can not lead to the formation of the eating addiction as it is not an addictive substance (Wilson, 2010). This position has the origin in the fact that food does not require from the individual to behave as the other addicts with alcoholic abuse, drugs, etc. However, the overwhelming amount of people having problems with control of the weight and the consequent arising obesity as the disastrous, proves the fact that certain groups are not able to control the food intake. The regulation of food intake for the prevention of obesity, is complex process. Nowadays, the experts face the necessity to develop and introduce measures that will help individual's body and brain to adjust to the current environment full of attractive food. At the same time these mechanisms should provide the individual wth the assistance in control of general consumption of food.
Besides, the other experts believe that there is no unique approach which should be used for the avoidance of the food addiction or eating disorder (Gearhardt, Boswell and White, 2014). This situations may appear in any age while the children may face the proble of eating addiction due to the absence of control on behalf of the parents. Finally, the current environment and framework of individual's life in terms of globalization lead to the situation when person can not control properly the consumption of food and choose which products to take. People at age after twenty years old usually pay less attention to the origin of the food, it's elements and impact on the body. Only some years ago the new tendency appears while some groups of people launched the program having the aim to turn the body of the person into the healthy one. In addition, the development of the technologies cause the eating disorders as well. People pay more attention to work at the computer without any time to eat in the propert manner.
In this regard, having considered the abovementioned studies and relevant researches, the author came to the conclusion that this sphere should be investigated further, as there is no enough evidence about the relation of certain food and the following addictive behaviour, brain activity. Besides, there is no information on the sensitive categories of people that are more reluctant to have food or eating addiction.
Blundell, J., Coe, S. and Hooper, B. (2014). Food addiction - What is the evidence?. Nutrition Bulletin, 39(2), pp.218-222.
Gearhardt, A., Boswell, R. and White, M. (2014). The association of “food addiction” with disordered eating and body mass index. Eating Behaviors, 15(3), pp.427-433.
Hebebrand, J., Albayrak, Ö., Adan, R., Antel, J., Dieguez, C., de Jong, J., Leng, G., Menzies, J., Mercer, J., Murphy, M., van der Plasse, G. and Dickson, S. (2014). “Eating addiction”, rather than “food addiction”, better captures addictive-like eating behavior. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 47, pp.295-306.
Ho, V., Arbour, S., & Hambley, J. (2011). Eating Disorders and Addiction: Comparing Eating Disorder Treatment Outcomes Among Clients With and Without Comorbid Substance Use Disorder. Journal Of Addictions Nursing, 22(3), 130-137. http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/10884602.2011.585721
The Huffington Post, (2016). Food Addiction v s. Eating Addiction: Why A Single Word Makes All The Difference. [online] Available at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/23/food-addiction-eating-addiction_n_5844712.html [Accessed 6 Jan. 2016].
Wilson, G. (2010). Eating disorders, obesity and addiction. European Eating Disorders Review, 18(5), pp.341-351.