How a detox can increase food addiction

I have been experimenting with nutritional supplements and doing a detox over the last weeks. One of my intentions for doing this detox, was breaking with my eating addictions. I hoped that staying away from sugar, wheat (carbs altogether) and fat for 21 days would rewire my brain into an addictive free, relaxed state.

Partly it did. The cravings were still there, but they felt soft and I could handle them well most of the time. I knew I wouldn’t give into them, as I promised myself to fulfill these 21 days.

But towards day 21, cravings increased. My mind found openings and options inside the challenge where I could give into the cravings. I had a conscious and very fulfilling binge on chocolate on day 21, with the idea of going back to no-sugar the next day. This is where it got difficult. All the addictive patterns were back – and even stronger than before.

I have experienced this pattern before. Each time I stayed away from sugar, wheat, alcohol and dairy for weeks (sometimes even months), I would have a fall back, where I would eat even more ‘bad stuff’ than before.

Somehow it seems that forcing myself to eat clean, increases my own addictive behavior towards food.

What to do? I feel already that eating sugary things causes me headaches, my intestines feel bloated and painful, I see it in my skin immediately, I feel tired and the mucous membranes in my nose and mouth feel irritated. I don’t want to go back there.

There are hundreds of different advices about what to eat and what not to eat. For now I don’t want to do something very strict and telling myself what not to eat. It feels like the masculine approach. Instead I want to try it the feminine way: by being gentle. I want to like what I eat, and not exclude for example all carbs, because I love fruit and I love oats in the morning (especially in winter).

I want to create an inclusive diet for myself: include the things I really like. Make a list of things I can eat as much as I want (green veggies, ginger, tea, soups, salads etc) and things I include in smaller amounts (fruits, oats, cocoa). I also want to increase my exercise, by starting to run and do yoga on the other days.

Let’s see what that brings.

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