Three Mondays have passed in the first month of this new year. For many food addicts, this is the time that weight loss plans begin to fall apart. The cravings become even more overwhelming after several failed attempts at dieting.

The idea that a food addict can simply begin and follow a diet on Monday or any other day without addressing the physiological addiction to food is a myth. It’s just not possible. Food addiction doesn’t work that way. Simply cutting back on calories will not help a food addict to recover.

Many food addicts come to us believing that eating “diet” foods low in fat will help them to lose weight when it’s exactly the opposite. Most low-fat foods contain even more sugar than normal fat ones, which means that for food addicts these so-called “diet” foods are even more addictive.

The more “diet” foods that a food addict eats, the more food they crave. These “diet” foods cause the exact opposite effect in food addicts and result in even stronger physical cravings than some normal fat foods. The only way to eliminate physical cravings for certain foods is to stop eating them.

This brings me to another weight-loss myth:  abstinent food doesn’t taste good. That’s absolutely not true. It is necessary for a food addict to enjoy their food in order to maintain long-term recovery. That doesn’t mean every meal will be perfect but, overall, finding and preparing food that tastes good is an important part of food addiction recovery.

If you’re struggling and you’ve bought into these myths, we’re here to help.