This could be another post regurgitating the widely available information on carbohydrate addiction. I could rewrite the science of it all. But you're more than capable of looking that all up.
It is a real thing. It is more than lack of self control. And in my experience, there is a way to defeat it.
Some of what I have read recommends replacing white carbohydrates with brown - what I hear with this advice is: "replace the food that tastes so good with food that tastes like crap but does nothing to stop the craving for the food that tastes so good." Been there, tried that. I can eat whole grains and what seems to have more in common with bird feed than human food and still want a Snickers. For me there is no relief from the craving for Doritos if I just "avoid them" and eat an organic wheat cracker.
How many "10 ways to lose weight" or "10 ways to fight cravings" articles offer the advice to avoid the food you are craving?
For me, avoiding these foods is impossible. I'm the grocery shopper of the family, I'm the cook, I'm the baker, and I'm a human living in a world where sweets and treats and chips and goodies are everywhere. I have no interest in having the government regulate the marketing of these foods, nor do I want them to be taxed so I can't afford them. There are people who don't need to avoid these foods, why should they have to pay extra because some of us have issues? How about a solution where I don't have to worry about avoiding these foods? How about a solution that ceases my desire for them altogether?
In our pantry and freezer, right this moment, you would find: five varieties of chips, fruit snacks, granola bars, a huge bag of snack size chocolates, cereals, crackers, french bread, ice cream, pizzas, and frozen french fries. (I live with four skinny people who don't overindulge and don't show signs of addiction or hormone issues - though they are all changing their food choices due to my blabbering on about it all).
I haven't had to avoid any of it. I haven't waited until I'm all alone to indulge in "just a little bit." I haven't had to convince myself that a little bite here and there won't hurt. I don't go through any mental anguish or moodiness while I dig deep for the will power to not give in to the craving - a craving, from what I've read, is much like a cocaine addict's craving.
With all the reading I've done I have only found a handful of rogue blogs run by "zero-carb eaters" that have suggested eating the way I have been eating to successfully overcome carbohydrate addiction.
I've explored all the warnings of a high fat/zero carb diet and I'll be writing about what I've discovered.
There are several contributing factors to why I have won the battle with carbohydrates. Part of it has been getting the carbs out of my system by using fat to become so fully satiated that I literally have no room to eat more. Another has to do with a hormone called Leptin - which I'll get into more later.
When I started, I just...started. I read and learned as I went. The first ten days I ate as much as I needed to of fat and protein. It wasn't organized at all. On the first day I ate some bacon and eggs fried in butter, then I tried this bulletproof coffee thing (coffee with a scoop of coconut oil and a scoop of butter blended until frothy), then I ate some olives, and then some more bacon. I stopped eating for a bit. Then for lunch I had some more bacon, cheese, ham, and almonds. For supper I ate a lot of chicken wings slathered in blue cheese dressing. And that night I had some cream cheese sweetened with Splenda topped with Reddi-Whip and pecans. - Sounds like a glutton's paradise, doesn't it?
The next few days were similar to the first but I couldn't quite eat as much.
By the fifth day something strange was going on in my stomach. I made a chicken/Caeser salad pizza for my family and reserved a healthy amount of toppings in a bowl for me to eat (~5 oz chicken, cream cheese, Caeser dressing, black olives, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese and some lettuce). This is one of my favorite combinations of food. I was so excited to eat my big bowl full.
I ate about one half of it and literally could not eat another bite. I felt that if I did I would throw up. I had only eaten about 300 calories worth of food but I had to stop.
I felt full.
I asked RLB, "Is this what happens to you when you stop eating with food left on your plate? Do you quit eating because you're exhibiting self control or do you stop eating because the food wouldn't taste good anymore if you ate more of it?" He told me it was because the food would no longer taste good if he tried eating more of it.
Fascinating! I don't remember if I'd ever felt that before.
This was on day five. On day six I tracked all of my food and added up the calories: ~1800
I physically could not eat more than 1800 calories.
There is nothing that can convince me that eating massive amounts of fat and protein for five or six days will have affected my health negatively. And if that is all I ever did, it was so worth it to learn that I could actually eat until I was done eating and not have overeaten.