• Dianne Schwartz

Abstinence


In previous posts, I’ve used the word “abstinence” as a requirement for recovery from food addition. Certainly, it can’t mean abstaining from eating—that would be silly. In this case, abstinence means abstaining from overeating and undereating and any form of purging.


How can abstinence be accomplished? By following a structured food plan that doesn’t trigger cravings and normalizes blood sugar levels. Basically, the Realization Center Food Plan for True Recovery accomplishes just that.


When a person follows a plan that provides a structure for eating and that excludes trigger foods and behaviors (e.g., sugar, artificial sweeteners, flour, wheat, caffeine, hard/soft cheese, munchy crunchy foods and other refined carbs, and too much/little food), they are relieved from cravings and experience relief from the spikes and crashes of blood sugar, which create a roller coaster of thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. And with the support of a recovery food fellowship such as 12 step meetings, Food Addicts Anonymous, and Grey Sheeters Anonymous, the addict finds a path to having a life beyond their addiction.


Is this easy? Absolutely not! Is it simple? Yes! What’s the vehicle that allows this to happen? Willingness! (Click here for a post on this topic.)


Willingness to go through the withdrawal process is an essential requirement for recovery. Remember, whenever a person experiences withdrawal symptoms, they are in the presence of addiction. So, when the food addict decides to let go of these triggering substances and begins to follow the Food Plan, they will experience symptoms of withdrawal, such as tiredness, headache, irritability, fogginess, and stomach upset. These symptoms last only a few days. They result from the body releasing all those toxic and harmful addictive substances that it has adapted to. Once the withdrawal symptoms fade, abstinence can be accomplished by following the Food Plan and regularly attending meetings.