Why don’t I enjoy it anymore – eating all of this food?

I really want to eat all of these things – but I don’t even enjoy the food anymore”

“It’s as though I can’t even taste the food anymore – I am just inhaling it”

“I get stressed/bored/sad and eat – but after the first bite I don’t really enjoy what I’m eating anyway”

So many people tell me that they are over-eating but that they don’t even enjoy the food that they eat anymore. It is almost as though they are just reaching for that food on auto-pilot mode, when they get stressed/tired/upset or because it is just a habit they have formed. Therefore, one thing I hear time and time again – is that eating this food comes with no or very little pleasure. If anything, individuals end up feeling incredibly guilty and bad about themselves after eating these “treats” and “bad” foods that they find themselves craving most of the time.

So why is this? Why do you want this food so much but then not even enjoy it when you eat it? It is all because of what is going on in your mind when you reach for these foods. You crave these “bad” foods due to way in which these foods (especially sugary foods) affect your brain – they can light up reward centres which give you intense short term pleasure. Yet as you eat more and more of these foods, you need more and more to feel the same sense of pleasure. Your brain also begins to associate eating these foods with feelings of pleasure and then anytime you feel bored/low/stressed, you look to these foods for pleasure and comfort.

Yet there is a big issue with looking to these foods for pleasure and comfort. Firstly, if you have not resolved the thing that is causing you to be bored/stressed/sad etc. you will keep wanting more and more of that pleasure – the pleasure is only short-term, so you will definitely over-eat. Also, because you know that you shouldn’t be eating so much – the over-eating will bring about feelings of guilt and make you feel as though you have no control.