“You can’t have ADHD, can you? I mean if you’re that hyperactive, surely you’d be skinny…”
Yes someone has actually said this to me.
But ADHD and compulsive eating go hand-in-hand. And obesity presents in a higher percentage of ADHD sufferers than in the rest of the population.
There are a number of reasons for this.
Hyperfocus means we often forget to eat and then find we’re suddenly ravenous, and eat all the easy-to-consume foods we can get our hands on. Think junk food, takeaways, ready meals.
Anxiety chest pains don’t feel like hunger pangs to anyone else, but we find it difficult to read our bodies, and so eat when we’re anxious or upset – misreading the feelings for hunger.
We behave impulsively to get a dopamine high, and why should it be any different with food? Chocolate is one of the foods that increases dopamine levels. Need I say more!
We’re often thinking three steps ahead, rather than focusing on “right now” – and that includes when the activity we’re doing it eating. Suddenly we’ve cleared our plates and we’ve missed enjoying it. So we eat something else.
Thankfully, the drugs I’m taking are used to treat Binge Eating Disorder as well as ADHD and should hopefully help me get my eating under control.