Swapping Food Addiction for Another Addiction

This blog is written by Kimberly H, a bariatric patient who discusses being a mother, eating well, working out, and trying to lose weight after weight loss surgery. Aside from sharing her experience with WLS, she discusses motivation, self-love, and mental health.

Food addiction is real. Many people turn to bariatric surgery because they have a food addiction. I was one of those people. I never realized how much food consumed my life until I couldn’t have it in the same way anymore after weight loss surgery. As a bariatric patient, it is crucial that you watch out for other addictive habits after weight loss surgery. Since your body can no longer consume food in the same way, there is a chance you could swap this addiction for another. Let’s explore that a little further. 

A lot of food portions

Bariatric surgery is wonderful because it helps you lose a significant amount of weight. However, it isn’t always butterflies and rainbows. If you are morbidly obese because you are addicted to food, you must be very careful. Addiction is very powerful, no matter the substance. When that addiction is taken away, sometimes people turn to new addictions. For some, it is a positive addiction such as working out. For others, it is detrimental. There have been numerous studies done that show alcoholism can be a problem for bariatric patients. Since we are not able to eat a lot of food at once, people oftentimes turn to liquids since they are easier to consume. This makes drinking alcohol a lot easier than eating half a dozen of doughnuts. It also doesn’t help that for many post-op patients, alcohol is a lot more powerful and therefore it doesn’t take as long to get drunk. It can be extremely dangerous if you aren’t careful.

It isn’t just alcohol either. If you have an addictive personality, you might turn to other things such as drugs, excessive shopping, gambling, or other risky behaviors. Our minds use these things to cope with difficult situations, but it is not healthy. Swapping a food addiction for another unhealthy addiction will only cause more problems. If you are turning to something else since you no longer have food, PLEASE GET HELP. Talk to someone. Talk to me. Let’s figure it out together.


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