Dr. Arya Sharma has posted this article about a study that gave an ADHD drug to people who experience binge eating up to several times a week. Click this link to read the full article. I can remember when cravings would come into my mind and could literally torment me until I would give in and eat whatever it was my brain was so fixated on. Sometimes I would experience a feeling like I couldn’t shove enough food into my mouth fast enough and I would actually feel angry when I started to get filled up. I would want to keep eating even after I was starting to feel literally stuffed. This was NOT stress, this was NOT depression, this was NOT self-loathing, this was NOT some painful emotional issue. This was my brain compelling me to a behavior.
The findings of the study were very significant—Binge eating was “nearly abolished” in study subjects who had been binging as much as four times a week or more. This is the passage I think is the most critical:
…patients experiencing periodic urges to eat large quantities of food even when not particularly hungry, and who suffer guilt and self-loathing afterward, have been coming to psychiatrists for many years. There is no broadly accepted standard of care for the condition. Some research indicates that, at a physiologic level, it involves abnormalities in dopaminergic and noradrenergic pathways, both of which are targeted by [the ADHD medication].
I added the bolding. This would prove what I’ve been saying all along. That those of us who struggle with serious weight problems are fighting our own physiology. We’re not out of control—we fight to take control—but we’re up against a very tough adversary. We’re not emotionally broken but we’ve got some wiring and some chemistry that’s a bit off and we have to find ways to deal with that. It’s time to permanently break down the paradigm that says people are overweight because they are weak and undisciplined and emotional wrecks. We need the right treatment and when we get it, we’ll put it to proper use.
You have never been broken.