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I have a physical addiction to peanut butter!


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And it's ruining my weight loss attempts. For a while I went without it because I finally convinced my parents to not buy it (and this took months since they think it "makes me happy"), and since my mom has started babysitting some neighbor kids she keeps the largest jar she can find in the house. I started crying yesterday after I finished half of the jar. I didn't even crave it, I just started taking spoonful after spoonful. I went to my mom in tears about the problem I have with it and she doesn't believe it. She thinks addictions are only for drugs and alcohol (thank god I haven't tried either! Heaven knows what that would look like!). How can I stop this addiction? It's getting painful!

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Well, you could switch to a high-fat/low carb diet. Try to keep daily carbs to about 20%, protein to 20-30%, and eat the rest as fat, staying within your calorie range. You want to vary your fat sources, so don't only eat peanut butter for fats, but that would allow you to have at least 4-8 tablespoons of peanut butter per day I'd think. And it would be quite effective for weight loss. (I incidentally have about that much on my normal days, though unfortunately I don't like it as much as you.)

I can't help you with eating half a jar at a time though; you have to have some self control. Fulfilling an addiction is not involuntary. You do have control over it, you just have to stop yourself from doing it. I used to have a soda addiction (I was guzzling over 50 oz. or ~4 cans of soda per day), and once I just used self control, I stopped, and the desire for it went away with time.

Also, if anything, make sure it's natural peanut butter, not the sugar-added stuff. The ingredients list should say: peanuts.

First of all, I LOVE peanut butter and I know what it feels like to turn to food for comfort and then feel the guilt kick in (and to have a parent who doesn't understand the severity of emotions that this kind of behavior brings on).  It sounds like it's a comfort food for you.  Before you go to eat peanut butter again, take a few minutes and ask yourself WHY you want to eat it.  Remember that ultimately YOU are in control of your body--you're not a marionette controlled by some evil force out to sabotage your diet (although trust me, I know it can feel that way at times).  Think about any painful emotions/ideas that might trigger this eating, and attack them without using food.  Overall, be positive.  You can do it!!!!  Hope this helped. :-)

you most likely have an "allergy" or intolerance to it, which is actually quite common.  there are a few foods I am intolerant to and i crave like CRAZY.  dairy is a common one, as is wheat, cane sugar, moldy foods (like nuts and chocolate).  certain hormones are released, like endorphins, dopamine, etc, so it it just like a drug.  anything you put in your body can be a drug, doesn't matter if it's legal or illegal.  I have had this problem a lot, where i actually get a major head change from eating the food, like an insane high or calmness, and i can't stop eating it and crave it constantly.  if you avoid it for long enough the cravings go away, just like anything else.

There are some foods (like peanut butter, milk chocolate and cookies, to name a few) that I cannot have in the house, because I can't really eat them in moderation. This was true in the past, when I had really bad eating habits, and now that I'm eating much better. Some people can have just one cookie (or tablespoon of peanut butter, you know, whatever) and then put away the rest, but for me it's difficult verging on impossible. It's easier to know yourself and avoid your triggers than wear down your willpower by subjecting yourself to constant temptation, because you "should" be able to resist.

It would be best if you didn't have the peanut butter in the house, barring that, get yourself some organic stuff without added sugar and eat that instead of the "regular" kind. Without the added sugar and other junk it's far easier to eat the stuff in moderation. Or start eating nuts instead of peanut butter, it's far easier to control portions that way.

we've evolved to eat everything we can, store up body fat for times with no food.  you have to convince her to keep bad foods locked up or not there

The first thing I would recommend is stop completely avoiding it. When its a treat and a craving, it tends to break in dramatic 'I'm going to eat the whole thing' ways. Mine was chocolate, and I found that eating two squares of chocolate everyday is much easier than avoiding it altogether. I eat it soon after dinner, when I'm not really hungry, and it controls the cravings.

The other thing, peanut butter isn't all that bad for you. Its a good source of protein, healthy fat, and I once read a study that said nut oils can help with weight loss. It's a bit of a calorie bomb, but that's where moderation kicks in. I try and have protein with all my meals, but I hate a big breakfast and don't like eggs, so I have a piece of peanut butter toast somedays. Or if I'm hitting the gym around noontime, I'll take half a pb sandwich and a banana with me to eat mid morning so I have that protein and potassium boost before working out.

While some people have better luck avoiding foods altogether, I do not. It's unrealistic that a food is never going to be offered and if I'm 'not allowed' to eat it, I'll end gorging on it. So it's all about moderation for me.

TWO things

1) Print this off and show your mom, maybe then she will realise how you perceive your 'problem' and be a bit more amenable to helping you with it.

2) Find someone who can teach you EFT, or find a 'how to on the web'. It works on acupressure points and you don't have to believe in it for it to work.

I had an addiction to Cola 9 years ago and didn't even realise it until I spoke to a therapist who pointed out that on the day I went to see her I had already drunk 14 cans! (This was at 6pm)

I thought I was doing the right thing I wanted something sweet I was on a diet and diet cola only has one cal per can right? She performed EFT on me and I haven't even wanted a cola, let alone drunk one, since, of any brand. My soft drink of choice now is ice cold water.

 Hope this helps

Here's what I did when I found myself about to binge on anything.

  1. Take one portion of it (doesn't matter if you can't afford it, we're talking a legitimate binge, which would be a bit more destructive. Make sure it's a small portion, too, so you get used to seeing that)
  2. Sit down at a table.
  3. Take a deep breath and relax.
  4. Eat it slowly and try to actually enjoy it. Food really isn't worth beating yourself up over.
  5. Sip water in between bites.

It's much, MUCH easier to control yourself to that extent. Even if you do wind up eating a few extra calories now, it's well worth it if this food stops being "forbidden" and having all of those emotional attachments on it. I mean it's just peanut butter, it's not something to be afraid of. It's something to spread on toast.

I doubt you're addicted to peanut butter.  Maybe you're craving the sugar or high fructose corn syrup many of the manufacturers add to the peanut butter.

Try this.  Go out and look for a jar of peanut butter with the following ingredients ONLY: Peanuts, Salt.  Eat half a jar of that in one sitting, then tell me you're addicted to peanut butter. 

Careful of the "natural" peanut butters. Some, like Skippy Natural contain sugar.  Others like Smuckers Natural are only peanuts and salt.  There are even some brands that only contain peanuts.

Skippy Natural:

http://www.wegmans.com/webapp/wcs/stores/serv let/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=1005 2&catalogId=10002&productId=565198

Smuckers natural:

http://www.wegmans.com/webapp/wcs/stores/serv let/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=1005 2&productId=369464

Long term, you should probably focus on eating more whole, clean foods and minimizing sugary ones.  Adapt your body away from craving sugary foods.

Original Post by minda_spk:

The first thing I would recommend is stop completely avoiding it. When its a treat and a craving, it tends to break in dramatic 'I'm going to eat the whole thing' ways. Mine was chocolate, and I found that eating two squares of chocolate everyday is much easier than avoiding it altogether. I eat it soon after dinner, when I'm not really hungry, and it controls the cravings.

The other thing, peanut butter isn't all that bad for you. Its a good source of protein, healthy fat, and I once read a study that said nut oils can help with weight loss. It's a bit of a calorie bomb, but that's where moderation kicks in. I try and have protein with all my meals, but I hate a big breakfast and don't like eggs, so I have a piece of peanut butter toast somedays. Or if I'm hitting the gym around noontime, I'll take half a pb sandwich and a banana with me to eat mid morning so I have that protein and potassium boost before working out.

While some people have better luck avoiding foods altogether, I do not. It's unrealistic that a food is never going to be offered and if I'm 'not allowed' to eat it, I'll end gorging on it. So it's all about moderation for me.

 I agree. I LOVE peanut butter. I will eat peanut butter sandwiches all day every day if I let myself. So I put 2 tbsp in a container EVERY DAY, and bring it to work with me. I dip my celery in it. Vegetables, and the yummy peanut butter all in one go. I put the jar in a remote place in the cupboard so when I do go in there, I don't even see it.

I can't deny myself the things I love, or I WILL gorge myself on them eventually.

I read physical attraction and got weirded out.


I know it's SUPER embarrassing, but the best thing you can do is just straight up tell your mom that you can't control yourself, it's making you sick, and you can't have it in the house anymore. OR!! Ask her to place it in an area that where you can't find it.

For me, if it's in the house, I'll eat it. I no longer buy any of the foods I overeat.

There is a product out there called Better N Peanut Butter. Its available online and at most Trader Joe stores. It has a lot less fat and calories, and it is good.

http://www.betternpeanutbutter.com/

Original Post by doxiegal1960:

There is a product out there called Better N Peanut Butter. Its available online and at most Trader Joe stores. It has a lot less fat and calories, and it is good.

http://www.betternpeanutbutter.com/

Interesting list of ingredients.. I think I'll stick to dry roasted, unsalted peanuts.  Much healthier than this immitation paste.

Peanuts, one of the "worlds healthiest foods"

Ingredients in the fake stuff:

Ingredients: PEANUTS (AS DEFATTED PEANUT FLOUR AND NATURAL PEANUT BUTTER), TAPIOCA SYRUP, PURE WATER, DEHYDRATED CANE JUICE, RICE SYRUP, VEGETABLE GLYCERIN, SOY FLOUR, SALT, TAPIOCA STARCH, NATURAL FOOD FLAVORS, PAPRIKA & ANNATO, CALCIUM CARBONATE, LECITHIN, VITAMINS E & C (ANTIOXIDANTS).

Hi

I go through phases of craving certain foods, right now pb sandwiches, so what i do is:

Buy low cal whole wheat bread 80cal 2 slices

Weigh the pb portion that I'm going to eat 32gr= 1 portion about 190cals

Eat the sandwich slowly and include it in my daily calorie allowance and plan for it.

 

Never eat from the container, and never eat standing or doing something else.

Enjoy your portion, and be conscious of what you are doing.

And eventually it will go away, for me it last a month or two and then start craving something else, and when I say crave I mean binge type cravings that I have to control.

good luck

I was reading some of the other replies and I realized that I never eat pb at home : ) Because then I might eat the whole jar. Instead, it's my 'travelling food,' a snack to carry with me. So yeah, it's in my house, but I only use it to make sandwiches/as a dip to keep with me for later, or for toast to eat on my way to school.

I agree with the guy who said to get the peanuts and salt one.  You will seriously change your mind about your peanut butter addiction.  My mother bought one once to try it out..half the jar is sitting in the pantry a couple months later.

The only peanut butter I really crave is the jiffy/skippy sugary, hydrogenated oily one.  I love it though, can't give it up.  Self control has a lot to do with it, I've been there with the whole spoonful after spoonful though, you can do it.  You just have to make that decision.

its really tough when you are not in charge of what food is or isnt in the house but at least you are craving a healthy food!

i think that rationing it into your daily diet is a great idea! dont allow yourself a bottomless serving, just what your particular calorie intake allows

 make sure when you eat it that you are not multitasking even if that means just watching tv or doing homework and therefore half paying attention to what you are eating. be sure to savor every bite and dont go back for more!

you can have it tomorrow as a reward for doing well today, or whatever it takes to make it work for you.

 

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