Which Disordered Health Food Eater Are You? : Addicted to Food Series Part 3

Wednesday Apr 20 | BY |
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toxins in connecticut fish
The Toxic Ostrich is right about this one…

[This is Part 3 of a 5 part Addicted to Food Series that was inspired by the Oprah Winfrey Network show “Addicted to Food.” Here’s part 1 and part 2.]

The last two days I’ve talked about food addiction and how it can make you unhealthy and overweight, but I’ve been itching to tell what I’m about to say here…

Food addiction or disordered eating doesn’t always make you fat.

You can be skinny and be addicted to food.

You can eat healthy food and still eat in a disorderly way.

You can even look healthy and have an unhealthy relationship with food.

I know, because I’ve been there. I’ve also seen it over the past few years as Annmarie and I traveled around the country speaking about health.

It seems like the health world attracts (particularly the raw food world) a fair share of people who hide their issues behind the guise of “healthy eating.”

Today, I’m going to outline some of the food addicted and disordered eating personalities from the health world so you can see if you fit one (or all of the molds.)

1. The Professional Dieter

Paid by none, the Professional Dieter attempts to climb the ladder to lasting weight loss by trying every diet on the planet at least once.

The Professional Dieter likely found the raw food diet or other health food diet by a Google search for “diets I haven’t tried yet.”

Luckily, the raw food diet or others (paleo, vegan, etc.) are many worlds healthier than most of the others that they’ve tried before.

The negative side is that after they lose 5-10 pounds and then gain it back after a vacation to Disneyland, they move on to the next New York Times Bestselling diet book.

Of all these personalities, the Professional Dieter is the one who is most likely addicted to food and most likely spends more time taking care of others than taking care of themselves.

This is why they can never focus long enough on one diet to actually make progress.

The cure for a Professional Dieter is to show them that if they take care of themselves first, good things tend to happen – including lasting weight loss.

2. The Dogmatist

Black or white.

This is the motto of the Dogmatist.

Food is either raw or cooked.

Meat or no meat.

You’re right or you’re wrong – nothing in between.

The Dogmatist may say, “if it’s not local, I won’t eat!”

This egotist and very type-A person cannot even imagine that there is just a shade of gray to any argument and will fight “my way or the highway” until they turn purple in the face.

The Dogmatist is an extremist by nature and also tends to be a high functioning control freak.

It’s generally no fun to be around the Dogmatist unless you’re one yourself.

When it comes to health, the Dogmatist will literally destroy their health before they admit that their beliefs were flawed.

I used to have a little of this inside of me, so I’m definitely sympathetic to this particular type of disordered thinking or eating philosophy.

What cures the Dogmatist is a little bit of experimentation. Once they realize that they don’t die if they eat some cooked (or animal) foods, they lighten up a bit.

3. The Addiction Switcher

The Addiction Switcher bounces from one addiction to the other.

They go from anorexia to bulimia.

They transition from heroin to overeating.

They go from coffee to raw chocolate.

They go from 100% raw vegan to 100% paleolithic in the drop of a hat.

I’m not saying that eating either of these ways is inherently an addiction, but the way that the Addiction Switcher transitions is where the danger lies.

They switch overnight with little thought, believing they’ve overcome their addiction to the previous substance, food or activity.

The truth is they’ve just transferred the addictive behavior to another muse.

There are a lot of Addiction Switchers in the health world, because the health world tends to attract extreme people. I would consider myself one until a few years ago.

I switched from alcohol and drug overindulgence to strict raw food. It wasn’t until I realized what had happened, that I was able to work on my switchyness.

To cure the Addiction Switcher from their illness, they need to be shown how to find their passion and accept love – otherwise the addictions will eventually burn them out.

4. The Anorexic Raw Foodist

This doesn’t require much explanation.

The Anorexic Raw Foodist is a past (and present) anorexic who’s found it very convenient to hide their eating disorder under the guise of raw food.

Raw food is the perfect disguise because The Anorexic Raw Foodist can eat just enough food so that people who don’t know them aren’t overtly suspicious and they can still be really (sometimes fatally) skinny.

Fortunately, for the Anorexic Raw Foodist, those who care can see right through the smoke and mirrors – it’s really not that hard.

This is a very personally destructive personality type and a person like this needs to be helped.

The Anorexic Raw Foodist can be cured with good professional help and addressing the need to control everything – including what they put in their mouths.

5. The Toxic Ostrich

The Toxic Ostrich is always worried about toxins.

Toxins in the body, toxins in the air, toxins in their clothes, or toxins in Antarctica.

Now, I don’t think it’s bad to be worried about toxins. We all need to limit our exposure and do our best to assure that we’re protecting ourselves with antioxidants and chelating foods.

The Toxic Ostrich takes everything to far when they makes his or her decisions based on fear of being overloaded with toxins.

The Toxic Ostrich would never come to California now due to the Fukushima disaster, even though the real levels of radiation in their hometown may be just as high or higher.

This person usually bases their decisions about toxicity on emotional, sometimes irrational (not always!) fear – not reality.

They put their heads in the sand and think they’re protected, while the rest of their body is exposed.

The truth is, there is very little we can do about many of the environmental toxins that we are exposed to on a regular basis. We have to do our best and push on with things we can control like our exercise, nutrition and emotional health.

Curing the Toxic Ostrich requires education and patience. They need to come to their own terms with their hyper-inflated fears.

6. The Serial Detoxer

This may one of the most dangerous of all these health personalities. (Along with the Anorexic Raw Foodist)

The Serial Detoxer is always detoxing, many times to the point of deficiency.

If the Serial Detoxer is not detoxing, they think that any blemish, burp, hiccup or fart is caused by a toxin in the body that needs to be detoxed out though a fast, a diet, a supplement regimen or chelation.

In this way, the Serial Detoxer is very similar to the Toxic Ostrich, since they are always concerned about toxins.

The Serial Detoxer is also very similar to the Anorexic Raw Foodist, because the Serial Detoxer is always on a juice fast, a mono-meal diet or a water fast to cleanse from toxins that have accumulated in their body from the organic lettuce they picked out of their garden.

The reason why the Serial Detoxer is a danger to themselves is because they couldn’t fathom that any signs the body gives them like fatigue, acne, rashes, or hospitalization could be caused by their disordered eating and nutrient deficiencies.

This chronic juice faster is generally a control freak and has had a history of disordered eating and food addiction in the past.

The Serial Detoxer can be cured by professional help or anyone who can help them feel loved and supported no matter what they look or feel like.

7. The Healthy Binge-er

The Healthy Binge-er is almost the same personality as the Serial Detoxer except there is one difference.

When the Healthy Binge-er is not detoxing from a juice fast, they’re eating pizza, hamburgers and cheese fries.

The Healthy Binge-er is, obviously not healthy, and is addicted to food and disordered eating.

To cure the Healthy Binge-er, you can apply the same advice as the Serial Detoxer – professional help and teaching them how to feel loved and supported no matter what they look or feel like.

8. The Quick-Fixer

The Quick-Fixer wants the easy way out.

They want a foot bath to do what healthy eating does.

They want a rebounder to replace regular exercise.

They want a pill to cure their cancer.

Now, this is not to say that some of these things work, what I’m saying is that the Quick-Fixer relies on exactly that… the quick fix.

Generally, the Quick-Fixer is a trusting and caring individual who is willing to try anything except those things that will really work for their issue.

The disorder or addiction here is to instant gratification and aversion to real work.

It’s hard to convince the Quick-Fixer that it will take more than a drop of essential oil to heal their open wound.

Any time you go to someone’s house and see more than three dusty health gadgets littering their family room, you know you’re in the presence of a Quick-Fixer.

To cure this individual of their addiction to buying health gadget and supplements that aren’t miracle drugs, you need to be very direct and make them look in the mirror and see what they’re doing. Once they realize they’re really not making an effort to get better, they’ll come around.

These are only 8 of many different types of health personalities that can be involved with disordered eating or food addiction. My hope with creating this list was to make things fun by serious at the same time.

If you find yourself feeling you’re one of these particular people (or you know someone who is) see if you can be honest enough with your thoughts to try something different and see if you can declassify yourself and be free from your additions and disorders.

I want to know your thoughts: Are you any one of these personalities?

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog RenegadeHealth.com — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.


Comments are closed for this post.

  1. Tara Burner says:

    I have some switchyness (as you worded it lol) going on but also have a ‘secret’ that I haven’t put ‘out there’ yet so that’s part of the reason for me…and yet I help others get fit, exercise, coach them and love that I’m able to help others…and when the time’s right I’ll come out w/my ‘secret’ and hopefully that’ll help others as well if that makes sense as they’ll be able to see what I’ve overcome and dealt with…Thanks again for insightful deep topic here!

  2. Oh boy, the Toxic Ostrich rang a few bells. I completely overanalyze where my food comes from and what potential toxins it’s been exposed to… need to work on that.

  3. Shawna says:

    I’d say Im switchy but only because after being vegan and then raw, I got a lot of bad health issues, never had b12 tested but the signs point to it. I then see research and ppl who were vegan who went thru the same thing, so if I see a good study on eating cholesterol and how bone broth fixes this and that over time, heck yeah Im ganna do it. I do not eat raw to save animals (although that’s all lovely too), I was doing it for health. Then I feel too foggy on animal products so go back vegan. I’ve never found a happy medium. It’s difficult to know what to do w/o making yourself a guinea pig which can be dangerous, so Im sure I switch because of all the contridicting info out there.

  4. Sandi S says:

    Haven’t figured out how I’d classify myself yet, but used to work with a definite Dogmatist…only one way, Her way!!!!! Yikes, don’t know how I stayed friends with her so long! I was always the “good cop” in that working relationship.
    For myself, I’ll have to go over those catagories again but there’s one definite catagory I know I’m NOT!!

  5. Sounds to me like balance in all things is the key. I’m trying to do that while at the same time allow my body to heal itself. I may need to get strict for a while to see what happens. Waiting for the weather to quit being so crazy here. I need warmth and sunshine. 🙂

  6. Deena says:

    I am a mixture of types.I am a professional dieter,an addiction switcher and a quick fixer.Is there help for all three disorders that work as one?

  7. James says:

    I figured the Ostrich would be someone who put their head in the ground and ignored the toxins, not the description I was expecting.

    I once tried one of those electrode foot baths and the detox foot pads. Do you have info saying toxic foot baths don’t work? Seeing as how the muck and particles came out of the electrode box I suspected as much.

  8. Michelle says:

    I’ve dipped my toe in a few of these pools! A sense of humor and being grounded helps me not to get stuck in any of these (dogmas) now. It took a lot of work to get to this place of sanity though ; )

  9. Ellen says:

    I just need help! I’ve done them all!

  10. Amy G. says:

    I don’t think I like this article. 😉 I fit all of them except two, the anorexia and the serial detoxer. I have an eating disorder diagnosis and all of these are components of most eating disorders. My relationship with food is like no other relationship in my life. It’s hard having them spelled out like this. So good work Kevin!

  11. Selene says:

    Kevin, I’m surprised you didn’t mention orthorexia in all of this! Orthorexia: Pathological fixation on eating proper food. The term was coined by Dr. Steven Bratman, and you can find out more here:

  12. MC says:

    I am the Professional Dieter all the way……
    I know all the diets out there and I am always trying to help someone eat healthier. I make healthy foods for others and then I eat junk food… I am working on learning to take care of me first, so I can later continue to help others.

  13. Caroline says:

    Ditto Michelle 🙂 Now I ask and let my intuition guide instead of my shoulds.

  14. Faye says:

    I am a bit of a dogmatist. I think I’ve lightened up a bit as I’ve gotten older but while reading the one about the dogmatist I had to laugh at myself as it was so true! You do make me laugh out loud at time. Thanks Kevin!

  15. bitt says:

    I think your list is interesting and thought-provoking. However I don’t think it’s fair to call all vegans “disordered” and “dogmatists”. I know a lot of people who are laid back and flexible in many other ways but are still vegan because animal foods do not agree with them or they have good ethical reasons to be vegan.

    • Kevin Gianni Kevin Gianni says:

      @Bitt: I definitely didn’t write that vegans were disordered or dogmatists. There is a certain type of vegan (or any other person for that matter) who is dogmatic about what everyone else should do without showing compassion. That is disordered in my opinion. 🙂


  16. Mike says:

    Can’t even get a get a group together in a town of 100K, snacks aren’t the right kind, etc., like a really bad church split. My favorite was the Christian (I am also one so I can chuclkle) who liked Celtic sea salt. When I prounced it with a hard K rather than a soft s she almost broke out in a rash. If the Keltics learned something that can extend my life, I can use it. I practice Qi (chi) gong chanting Bible verses. Whatev

  17. I have to say the Dogmatist was my last and biggest incarnation. None of the others rang a bell for me. I did the 100% raw thing for a couple of years, healed a ton of things emotionally, physically, and spiritually, and noticed that my body was ready for the next step: balance. Said bye-bye to Dogmatist Girl and hello to my true Libran self. ; p

    Great entry, Kev!

    Lisa Marie
    Owner, Rite Chocolate

  18. Mary says:

    Hello…..after many years doing raw, back slowly to more “regular” eating, on and off raw but organic and then back to all raw until I landed back here where I grew up- The Bible Belt where most people eat crap – I’ve experienced alot of things with diet and people on diets.

    For one thing, I now believe that the psychological definitions, which can be life changing for some people, really only go so far and don’t address what are often incredibly deep feelings and issues, personal and global.

    The personal I mentioned yesterday deals with sexual abuse, where studies have definitely shown a huge correlation between bulimia and anorexia and that these people were usually sexually abused as children. It is the unhealed pain that drives them. And yes, love and self love and support are necessary; yet so is the hard work of going back and remembering and healing all lost parts who exist in pain. Which is in essence self love.

    I am not in any way putting down the other types of pain from childhood that people suffer from. It’s just that sexual abuse is my forte mainly because it is the least recognized and often forgotten one and tends to be the most damaging for these and other reasons.

    The other I have come to see over time is the pain that we all feel unconsciously most of the time for the animals and the earth from what is most of the food that people (and most of us in the past) eat! Some people choose on a Soul level to feel this for many reasons, but the obvious is that they care.
    Frankly, what I find disturbing is how many people don’t…….and that’s why I think some people carry more of a load as balance.

    It’s physics really…….you push something down somewhere and it pops up somewhere else.

    I ask you,
    “How will all of these issues really be remedied until we remedy the utter heartlessness that goes on in the name of eating and nourishment?”

    I know that to a large extent I am preaching to the choir……and thank you choir for that! That you actually care! Frankly,and this sounds strange for me to say, I would prefer to see eating disorders than people getting help with theirs and learning how to get better while still eating tortured animals! If you eat well, certainly go ahead and get the help!

    I just see how complex it all is because in our world we live with such deceptive paradigms. We are the masters of fix-it’s that leave out essential suffering and the degradation of others. I didn’t always see this and eventually my eyes began to open.

    I really do appreciate you all; Kevin and Annmarie and all of you who are trying to bring real changes to this planet.

    Be safe. Be well. Be alive. Be the change you want to see in the world!

  19. Cirsten says:

    Over the last 25 years I’ve tried a lot of different diets, so yes, I guess that I’m one of the professional dieters, even so I follow new ways for quite some years or even decades and I use my own common sense while doing it. I think the professional dieter deserves our empathy and compassion though, because we really feel it’s our duty to stop fooling around and start getting as healthy and beautiful as possible and do it now. The thing is just, that if a new attempt to get healthier (read: slimmer) makes you feel less good about your self, deprived or even sick, then you wouldn’t keep on doing the same thing, would you? Further more many diets ask you to use insane amounts of money on exotic ingredients you’ve never heard about before and the truth is that no diet, neither the South Beach, Paleolithic, Blood Type nor Raw Food or any other diet is a one fits all. There is no such diet. But you don’t know if it fits you, before you’ve tried it, do you? And unless you have a very thorough knowledge about food and nutrients, you won’t be able to uncover flaws in the newest hot diet before after you’ve followed it for at least a while.
    With the food industry and our governments working against our best interests and the growing epidemic of obesity in mind, I think there are only two ways: either give up once and for all or try to find a way to get and stay slim and healthy, even so it means you are going to be a professional dieter. To serve your optimal health, you have to search and try and experiment with your diet. Nobody else can tell you, what’s the best diet for you. That’s totally up to you.

  20. Lauren says:

    THANK YOU!!!
    Thank you thank you thank you for addressing this!
    I’ve had serious struggles with eating disorders/disordered eating in the past, and still do today. While I LOVE the raw food movement and think it’s super interesting, and has helped me overcome a lot of my problems with eating, it is iffy and full of triggers and ouchies for people with these tendencies. It’s not just people seriously ill that have food issues – many many of us just don’t know how to eat anymore! With all the information out there, it can be confusing, overwhelming, and consuming! It’s all too easy to become obsessed with what is ‘healthy enough’ or what it is that you ‘should’ be eating.
    I am a strong believer that people need to figure it out for themselves, and that moderation is key! I love raw food, but I still eat soups and cooked foods. I’ve been 90% vegan for years, but the raw life helps me incorporate the nuts and things I had been missing – while they still are troublesome due to my history and residual food issues.
    This stuff is too important to be missed or left out! It’s SO easy to get caught up in healthy eating and to get carried away – you may not even realize something’s wrong, or that you’re sick or depriving yourself, or going overboard, until you’re extremely ill/endangered.

    Again, thank you! and I hope more raw food/health forums pay attention and address this matter because it’s real, sneaky, and important!

  21. Awesome post! People really need to be more aware of this growing health-obsession epidemic, because its an insidious leech that can easily sink into people and take over them.

    I’d consider myself a bit of an addition switcher in the past (coming from a cocaine addition, after rehab I became a strict vegan, then a raw foodist, then a vegetarian, then followed the paleo-diet, and so on…) … I was constantly switching and searching for the ‘ideal diet’ for myself and after several years, I find that simply being an ‘omnivore’ as nature intended us and focusing on whole foods (fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, meat, poultry and fish) while avoiding dairy and grains has been my greatest self-discovery yet.

    I strongly recommend people to just focus on balance. After all, BALANCE is key … good, unprocessed, natural whole-food diet, exercise, sleep, a happy sex life, and having FUN is what its all about!

  22. Alex says:

    That was one amusing article I loved it! And yeah, I know a lot of black and whiters – that I stay away from.

  23. may says:

    what about emotional or uncontrollable binge-ing? Does that count?

    Large amounts of nuts, seeds, dried fruit, raw gourmet desserts, savoury treats, etc.

    Healthy or not, it’s gluttony. Or deprivation? Or an addiction to food to fill some sort of unhappiness in your life.

    Even if you know you are 80% full, you almost unconsciously begin reaching for more. Could it also be boredom?

    I’m not sure, but I have encountered a time for example, when i came home stressed and made batch after batch of raw brownies with walnuts. Made me feel good for the time being, but I knew I had over eaten, much more than my body was asking for.

    So, I would imagine this is consistent with some folks, the need to always want that food fix. The desire to scour for something else to munch on. Is it that they are not eating the right balance of nutrients?

    I just figured emotional eating or binge-ing is a very common disorder no matter what diet you are on.

  24. Season Naify says:

    Time to be brave…

    I vacillate between many of these. I am only recently coming to terms with an Eating Disorder. I need professional help and am seeking it out now. I am hoping to heal of this and be able reveal a path for others, though am not attached to that. I just want to be free of this, as it has major detrimental effects on my health, which is counterproductive.

    The raw world of nutrition was a great mask for a few years, but eventually, the truth showed. I’ve had to ease off of watching and reading a lot of health information for this reason, so that it wouldn’t become obsessive. Renegade Health is the only sites I follow currently, because the balanced and transparent approach helps me feel safe.

    So many times, fear is the culprit for dogmas that develop, even if we are trying to help people. Sometimes we are trying to help because we are trying to save others from the doom we perceive as impending or that we’ve experienced ourselves. It’s secretly control, and it attracts it’s own likeness.

    Thank you for exposing this. As usual, this is apro pos timing. It just goes to show that we really are all in this together, and we share in the struggles.

    Very grateful for this. Please feel free to share help strategies or organizations or professionals that you feel have an integrous approach you’ve seen work for people. Many of us don’t know where to turn.

    Many blessings as you call for the truth.

  25. Bonnie says:

    Kev, you have a way of spelling things out, wow! I think I’ve been thru a few of these, especially the professional dieter and the healthy bing-er. I think it’s possible for people to go through phases and not become polarized on any one thing to the point of health crisis. But it is also easy for people to slip into a dysfunctional pattern to avoid real issues, for sure. I have found the road to balance is like peeling an onion. Every layer that comes off gets us closer to the center. Thanks for another great, thought provoking article!

  26. Ha. This was enlightening. I am definitely a Professional Dieter and Serial Detoxer.

  27. Elo says:

    Hi Kevin,
    I appreciated your open confession to past errors. The public needs to know that it was not always the perfect world for people in the limelight such as yourself. Hopefully we all can get to the stage in life where we can make a transition away from old destructive ways. Unfortunately some people never get there. I now believe that having an open mind to exploring new ideas is the key to change. For me, longevity became a priority at 60. Changing the way I eat, drink and lead my life is even rubbing off on my family in a very good way. As you have alluded to in Renegade Health each of us must take ownership of our own health. Thanks for the help.

  28. carol says:

    Thanks for a brilliant post, I have definitely swung between nearly all of these types at one stage or another. My biggest revelation recently was working out that after being exclusively raw for 2 years I had just copied and pasted all my former bad eating habits over a healthy raw food diet, never actually confronting, dealing with or healing myself. I am now bringing more balance to my diet and my life by adding a bit of cooked stuff. No more raw food fascist:)

  29. Sue says:

    I’m a combination between the dogmatist and the healthy binger, if I would have to give myself labels. Until I lose the weight gained from having no plan other than what I thought was healthy eating, I have come to better understand my body. That is a good thing! So, as far a owning up to a dieting label, I only loosely fit any category!

  30. Yamina says:

    Hello Kevin !
    Funny types of health eaters ! Thks you to be so frank about your own addictions. For my part, before discovering fruitarianism, when I had some trouble with my husband, I couldn’t help nibbling delicious cookies, with delicious arabisch moka, and after going for a tremendous walk, trying to low down the speed of my thinking, and that… until he came back home. I couldn’t handle my emotions. Really could’nt. I have seen a video in which R. Gruben says : emote or eat. Eating as an anaesthetic. It was the case for me, but for me, this anaesthetic functioned half part, I would have eaten the entire shop to get sleepy ! Now, it is different. I am calm and when I see those marvelous fruits with their wonderful colours, when I eat them, with the same reflex, I just have the pleasure of fresh, pure sweetness on my tongue, and no trouble, no culpability. As if fruits tell me : “Eat me as much as you can, I will not hurt you, on the contrary…” It is magic. I can face quietly one of my two addictions : my husband ! Your blog is very interesting and the comments too. I will reread all of them, watching and listening the videos that I haven’t quite understood, and all the others ebooks I have downloaded, because my second addiction is reading ! Thks for all !

  31. Jane says:

    Great article Kevin, love it!

  32. Jesus my love says:

    Interesting, really love your honesty. Food Addiction come in many ways and it’s socially accepteable..unlees you become obese or too skinny. There is help, a 12 step program like the one shown in the video can deal with some of this issues, bring them out ..but not heal them.
    I have been there, was there in a 12 step progam for many years.16! .yes I wasn’t “eating”, I was abstinent, no alcohol, no cigarrets, no sugar, no flour, 3 meals nothing in between..I really thought I had it all together, I was better..somehow..I thought! then Jesus came..and change my heart.I was able to heal..to trust and to see other people’s pain. All that I reach for was my own holyness in my perfect “recovery life”. Today I know my body is the temple of The Holy Spirit..I take care of it..I don’t want to be anything..no labels, for many years a was a” food addict”..and that label kept me there..today I don’t want to be a raw foodist or a vegan or a ..nothing..I don’t want my children to be there. Today I am free! and I can listen the Jesus..He guides me. We all have issues, I bring mine to HIM and I find healing.

  33. oreganol says:

    I think I have minor parts of a few of these, although I’m not as bad as I was. I’m a lot more easy goig these days. I try to eat as healthy as I can but don’t stress if I have the occasional beer or slice of cake.

  34. krisitn says:

    I am very aware of which I am. I am looking for the tools and/or help to change.
    Any suggestions or advise
    The binger

  35. Cindy says:

    Great post again. In the past, I was five of those disordered eating personalities at one time or another. The only ones I wasn’t were the anorexic raw foodist, serial detoxer, & the quick fixer. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to get past a lot of eating issues I’ve had & I’m healthier for it & a lot more pleasant to be around. LOL!

  36. Eric Danzey says:

    What do you call the over-and-over again quick-fixer? Chronic…? Really good piece… See myself in the quick-fix part of this and I’ve trapped myself here since I was a kid. I’m one of those that’s overcome a lot to do as well as I have, but this is the one area I’ve not been able to get a grip on ~ my wife helpedpoint that out to me. I’m loving what I’m learning with everything you’re sharing, teaching and doing. Reading High Raw now…

    Thank you!


  37. THANK YOU for the concise and very real description.

    just re posted!

  38. Monica Joan says:

    i spent years trying to fix my life with food, thinking that if i could find that right, healthy balance of eating, i would be at optimum and my life would feel complete. while i now know that is true to a point, food should not be put on a pedestal as a method of ‘salvation’.
    there is truth to feeling healthy from eating right, and it can be a noble pursuit. although i also recognize that, as an emotional eater myself, i sought after this path because i was trying to control the food because i could not seem to control my eating. but i would still eat too many healthy foods when i was not hungry, trying to pacify some empty emotion. i place a large value on how i look, and i think a lot of females feel this way. if we are not vibrant, beautiful and fit we are not good enough. so trying to eat healthy is a way to obtain that, but also a way to disguise a preoccupation with food/mood/beauty obsessions. getting to the root of these emotions and learning how to handle them is the way to go. just as you stated in previous articles! thanks for lifting the curtain!!!!!

  39. Rob says:

    I enjoyed the post. I would like to add one. The Lab Experiment. They start their day with powdered superfood in a glass of water. They are not above trying elk antler. They put very odd roots and sprouts in their smoothies. They test the pH of their saliva.
    I know the type. I do alot of it.

  40. Thank you! I’d say the biggest one was the serial detoxer! I don’t even know if I know how to eat normally. I’ve been trying to “juice feast/ fast” for a few years now…I hardly eat enough. I only weigh 113 and I’m almost 25. Probably also the toxic ostrich…the dogmatist (getting much better on that) .. and the addiction switcher… oh yeah! I think we have a good intention. Oh well. We are here to learn eh? There are others things to life then food!

  41. I love that, the Lab Experiment!

  42. Lyzz says:

    So, I usually don’t comment, but you mentioned in an email recently that we should make our presence known every once in a while…

    Just one? Almost all rang some bell, Professional Dieter for sure, and definitely quite a bit of the Healthy Binge-er, with a bit of Dogmatist and Serial Detoxer thrown in just to keep things interesting. The solutions all sound well and good in theory, except that I’ve been trying to find an answer for almost 10 years, and have seen a few therapists along the way and still haven’t gotten the message I guess. I’m not trying to be difficult, but I’m just really frustrated.

    I decided to become vegan about 2 years ago after reading the McDougall Plan for Maximum Weight Loss in my Professional quest for weight loss. At first it was a diet to lose weight, but as I learned more about nutrition and health (not to mention animal welfare and the planet) I thought it made a lot of sense in more ways than that. I lost some weight, but the Healthy Binge-er reared her ugly head and I basically became a junk food vegan. I don’t remember how I found raw food, but I’ve tried some detoxes, juice fasts, etc. Still about the same weight I was 2 years ago, well, maybe 10-15 pounds lighter. I ate McDonald’s this morning, and seriously considering Schlotzky’s and Cinnabon for lunch. I can’t believe I just admitted that…

    I’m getting married in 6 months, and no one wants to feel fat and ugly on their wedding day, much less the honeymoon on a beach afterward. Am I kidding myself that being raw and/or vegan is really the way I want to live and not just a quest for weight loss? I don’t know. I know I do feel better when I’m eating more raw food, especially in the summer in Texas, and sometimes I really do crave green juice and green smoothies.

    Anyway, thanks for the opportunity to share. Maybe I should do that more often.

  43. Naraleska says:

    Kevin, this is a fantastical eye opener!! thank you for bringing this topic up, it feels like sort of coming out of the closet, if you know what I mean … some years ago, the idea of being addicted to food was unthinkable but it is a fact and we need help to overcome it! I have actually noticed my own addiction, now I think I need to find the proper help to find the solution! but thank you very much for such a helpful yet simple article! I appreciate your honesty as you can not imagine! thanks!

  44. Mila Ilina says:

    haha, it’s so true! way to expose us Kev! Lol.

  45. Mary Harris says:

    Kevin, Thanks for the laugh!!! Enjoyed this information. My take on it is this. I am beginning to believe that when you have some kind of chemical imbalance it is hard not to get stuck in doing the same thing over and over again. It is just easier to make the same kinds of food again and again simple because it’s too hard to come up with something else. Anyway thanks so much for all you do -it opens us up to new ways of looking at things.

  46. Josephine says:


  47. megan says:

    It’s up to parents to instill healthy eating habits to their kids at a young age. http://www.howtoeathealthey.info/ also has some great health food tips!

  48. Gwen says:

    Thank you Kevin for these articles on addiction as they reminded me of my decision this past Christmas to deal with some unresolved issues I have carried around for many years. I have always said I have an addictive personality but until now did not connect my addictions to my emotional issues.
    I am an Addiction Switcher; however, when I switch one addiction for another I know exactly what I am doing as I put a lot of thought in to the switch before making it. My food addictions have not resulted in weight gain because I am very controlled with my addictions surrounding them with lots of rules. As well, I have been addicted to working out and running for many years 7 days a week without fail. Then 2 and ½ years ago I developed arthritis in my lower spin resulting in crippling pain across my lower back and down my right leg which put an end to running and really limited what I was able to do in the gym. Not being able to run set off my coffee addiction again stronger than it ever was in the past and increased my addiction to chocolate with no desire to change.
    Now that I recognize there is a connection between my unresolved emotional issues and my addictions I going to work on the emotional issues and in healing them hope to be able to free myself of my food and exercise addictions.

  49. bella says:

    awesome post as always kevin – you have such heart!

    a comment on this article put me on a search which brought me to this video where raw foodist-Professor Gruben talks about the emotional aspect of eating – it’s cause and solution – such enlightening and healing information!

    thank you again Kevin for contributing in such a public way and creating the forum for great exchange between health warriors everywhere… after many years of trying to control addiction and finding escape from my habits in healthier and ‘higher’ choices, i realise that as the saying goes, “wherever you go, there you are”. i have continually run from my pain in new and different paths that offer salvation, but the truth is that salvation is simply in facing myself and my feelings. simple but not easy…

    i watched the above video and then went outside to reflect on it. a painful truth arose within me – so what did i do? went into the kitchen for some fatty cashews to switch my body’s focus from emotion to digestion! it’s obvious but the difficulty is in staying with how we feel, facing it and breathing through it…

    i saw myself in alot of the list put together here, which is why emotional intelligence is so important to develop as we progress on our journey.

  50. jc petrie says:

    Ouch! I’m definately at least 80% food dogmatist. I became vegetarian and a ‘health food’ addict in my early twenties because my life was screwed up and I guess it seemed easier to change my diet than figure out how to change my thinking and deal with my emotional issues. Thirty years later, my relationship with food is lousy, my health is down the toilet and I’m having to deal with the problems I needed to face in the first place!
    But I managed to brainwash myself with the idea that ‘meat is toxic’ and we should ideally live on spring water and a few green leaves and now I’m terrified to eat a piece of meat and look at everything I eat with a deal of suspicion. Rigid does not begin to describe it!

  51. Lyzz says:

    Just wanted to update… I actually wound up having a really helpful insightful day yesterday. I guess reading the message jiggled some stuff free from the back, intelligent, recesses of my mind and I had some great epiphanies about some of my issues. Now the big question is can I put that new realization to good use and overcome it?

  52. […] [This is the final installment of my "Addicted to Food" Series inspired by the new show on the Oprah Winfrey Network. Here is part 1, part 2 and part 3.] […]

  53. Dale says:

    I think many people may be all or most of them integrated together

  54. Gail Jensen says:

    Another excellent blog. And I don’t know about all of you, but I read each and every reply as they are always so good and I learn so much from the posts here.
    I agree with so many of them (Michelle) and sometimes someone words things so beautifully that I think to just say “ditto” this person.
    I don’t know that I have a disordered eating overall. I think I’m still trying to find my way and it seems that just when I think that I have found what seems a fit for me, I have a huge life change and it gets disrupted all over again and have to find my way all over again. And I agree that if you hear alot about say Atkins, for example, then get the book and think it makes sense so you try it and that’s the only way you’re going to know is to keep on the path until you’re there.
    I used to be much more dogmatic about a number of things but in my more mature years, I have really lightened up on that. 🙂 I am probably somewhat of a quick fixer because I think that I’m tired of investing time in books, reading, buying the foods, etc, when, it might just be that I need some probiotics, or whatever, and try some rebounding and then see if it helps with problem X. Again, I think alot of this is just trying to heal yourself and discover oneself and I don’t necessarily think that’s such a bad thing. I no longer run out to buy every supplement that is all the rage though, so that quick fixer tendency is being helped largely due to the economy (no money!) and also just being patient and let consistent healthy eating do its job first.
    Honestly, I don’t have any addictions. If I were “addicted” to anything it would be to knowledge. Love learning, reading, discussing, probing, sharing, exchanging. Is that addiction, though, or a passion? Hmm..

    Lab experimenters – LOL

  55. What category do I fall into? I was a yo-yo dieter(mostly on and off of Weight Watchers) who could never keep the weight off for long, combined with a compulsive over eater. I read Eat to Live, Volumetrics and Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease (amongst others) and then adopted a mostly oil-free Vegan diet and became a vocal proponent of this way of eating, because I lost all of my excess weight without feeling hungry and crazy! Where do I fall?

  56. Amber says:

    Great article Kevin. I definitely see myself in some of these disorders. Of course, most of us know they are there but it makes it real when they are acknowledged lol I used to work at a Natural Food store and would see more eating disorders than ever. Having suffered from it myself I can spot it from a mile away now. I don’t think you can step into a Whole Foods without seeing someone with an eating disorder. It is crazy how powerful food can be in both negative and positive ways. Hopefully it will work more towards the positive side. 🙂

  57. Daniel G says:

    While I agree with these descriptions I do not believe they are a “Disorder.” It seems that everything nowadays has to have a label! For me my Journey is MY Journey. What might work for me many not work for someone else. I listen to my body CLOSELY it will tell me what works and what does not work. I guess what I am trying to say is some of these things you are calling a “Disorder” may actually work for some folks. On the other hand it may not work for others. Does this make sense? I just purely disagree with labeling the way be eat in the sense that it has a name. I mean look at the disease mongering that goes on in the psychiatric community. Next we will have a drug for “The Dogmatist” eater! Leave the labels to those who want “Professional Help” and continue on with the healthy eating/living tips!

  58. diana says:

    Excuse me, but i thought rebounding was exercising. Is this not the case???

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