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The Basics of Food Addiction

When people work to lose weight, changing their eating habits is a crucial component to tackle. For many people, however, eating less and making healthier choices is far from simple. Some wonder if, much like with alcohol, one can be addicted to food. While this topic has been studied in the past, clear results have not always been determined.

Researchers have looked at obese individuals and studied connections between them and their family members to look for links with alcoholism and other addictions. Recently there have been links found that indicate one with alcoholism in the family may be 30 to 40 percent more likely to experience obesity than those without alcohol addictions present. Women are at higher risk than men are, with a nearly 50 percent correlation compared to 26 percent for men.

Throughout the years of research, it is becoming evident that the food we eat and our patterns with food fall sync with the nature of addition. Those foods that are laden with salt, fat and sugar may cue triggers that lead to overeating in those with a predisposition to addiction. These foods are more available now than ever before, and they are believed to change brain chemistry and trigger cravings in many people, particularly those prone to addiction.

Addiction is a complex issue, whether it relates to alcohol or food. No individual gene causes food or alcohol addiction, but many families show a predisposition that can be difficult to avoid. Whenever those in the Albany area are considering lap band surgery, it is important to evaluate eating habits and consider strategies for making significant changes. Those with a family history of addiction will need to be especially aware of cues and trigger foods that may lead to overeating and hinder efforts to lose weight.


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