The Codependent Mom: Feeding Your Child’s Food Addiction
When your baby started to scoot around the house, you probably changed your decor. You moved breakables or dangerous items out of reach. You covered your electrical outlets.
You may have also cleaned up your personal act in various ways to make a healthy, safe, positive environment for your dear baby.
You kept careful watch over your little one, and with a sensible combination of environmental adjustments, vigilance, and training of your baby not to touch those dangers that couldn’t be removed, you made your house a place where your darling could play and learn and enjoy freedom and safety.
You limited your child’s choices, without offering dangerous fun in order to get her to do beneficial things. You wouldn’t, for example, say she could chew on the electrical cord if she would play with her blocks first.
You wouldn’t tolerate her playing with the food processor in hopes she would also end up spending some time looking at her alphabet book like you wanted her to.
I trust you wouldn’t use a cable porn show as a bait to get your little tyke to watch an educational show on PBS, or hold out a dirty magazine in exchange for reading Mother Goose with you.
You wouldn’t offer a little cocaine if he would just drink his milk. You wouldn’t knowingly get your child hooked on an addictive, harmful substance and then continue to feed that addiction, happy to feel needed and happy because your tot was happy.
How about a little treat, a soda, a candy bar, a bag of chips, a donut, a trip to McDonald’s, to get him to eat his veggies, or just because we want to?
According to recent research, those sugary, salty, fatty, yummy, junk food and fast food treats we all enjoy are not just bad for us; they’re also literally addictive. Just like heroin, they lead us to overdo it. We develop tolerance to them. The more we eat, the more we want to eat. We crave. It’s nigh impossible to quit.
Scientific findings continue to confirm that the similarities of junk food to narcotics are more than just a joke.
Processed foods today are deliberately engineered with salt, bad fats and sugar to be as seductive and addictive as possible, what food industry folks call “eatertainment,” according to David Kessler, in The End of Overeating. Lab rats’ brains, he claims, respond to these sweet, salty, greasy foods like an addict’s to cocaine.
No wonder so many people are overweight and unable to lose weight. No wonder our kids are going down the path to obesity in droves.
Knowledge is power against the junk food pushers who stand to gain by getting our kids hooked on their garbage edibles. Awareness is transforming. When we know the truth, if we realize that sugar and junk food is similar meth or heroin, we see things differently.
As extreme and cruel it may seem today to deny your child all processed junk food, I believe the day will come when we, or our children, will look back and marvel at our ignorance, like before we knew about germs, or the dangers of lead paint or cigarettes, and how we thought it was OK to have a little here and there—all in moderation.