Understanding Food Addiction: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Overeating is something we can all relate to at some point. Both humans and animals are hardwired to enjoy calorie-rich foods over lower calorie alternatives as a survival mechanism. However, when food is available to us in abundance, we have to rely on self-regulation and listen to hunger signals to ensure we don’t eat more than we should. Where Does Lack of Self-Regulation End and Food Addiction Begin? Food is about more than energy intake, it’s often about emotions. Humans eat for pleasure. We eat to heighten positive emotions and…

How We Can Reduce Addiction Stigma (So That More People Seek Help)

Addiction is a worldwide crisis that affects people from all walks of life. It’s likely that you personally know— or know of— someone who’s been affected by and/or succumbed to substance use addiction. In Canada, approximately 11 Canadians die each day from opioid related incidents. More than 10,300 Canadians have lost their lives to opioid-related overdoses in the past three years. (1) Could many of these deaths have been prevented? We believe the answer is yes. The reason why many people don’t seek or receive the help they need in…

5 Natural Therapies for Addiction Treatment

Addiction is considered one of our nation’s biggest health problems. Approximately eight million Canadians currently suffer from drug and alcohol addiction, and this number continues to grow each year. (1) Not factored into this number are those who are suffering from non-substance or behavioural addictions— such as shopping, gambling, photo viewing, smoking, sugar and food addiction. How Does a Person Become Addicted? In short, when a person becomes addicted (either to a substance or behaviour), the pleasure or “reward” center in their brain has become addicted to producing dopamine. Dopamine…

Finding True Love: Self-Love as a Path to Fulfilling Relationships

By Nirmala Raniga “Remember, in our inmost being, we are all completely lovable because spirit is love. Beyond what anyone can make you think or feel about yourself, your unconditioned spirit stands, shining with a love nothing can tarnish.” – Deepak Chopra Our most innate need is to love and be loved. We are born into this world with a pure expectation of unconditional love but regrettably this is not the experience for most of us. It is only through experiences where love is withheld from us that we begin…

Recommitting to Joy and Your Goals in the New Year

By: Nirmala Raniga Each New Year invites us to reflect on our past accomplishments and review the objectives we have set for ourselves. Life is truly a gift, and each moment we are alive, we have an opportunity to live it to the fullest. No matter what we hope to attain this year, the most valuable thing we can do is to approach each moment with joy. Finding new ways to be happy will help us become clear on what we hope to achieve in our lives. We can then…

Healthy Holiday Nutrition

The holidays are the time for celebrating with family and friends, but they can also be stressful when we find ourselves addressing difficult relationships and other situations. To cope with these challenges, people can sometimes overindulge in drink, food, and other treats. Overindulging in food is one way people can self-medicate. Using alcohol is another and can magnify rather than reduce holiday stresses, becoming particularly problematic for individuals in recovery. Consequently, abstaining from alcohol and instead enjoying non-alcoholic drinks, such as flavored waters, are healthier ways to enjoy holiday festivities….

How to Reduce Stress and Anxiety Over the Holidays

by Nirmala Raniga While the holidays often call to mind images of joy and sharing, in reality, for many the season can be one of anxiety and stress. During this time, we often feel pressed to find the perfect gifts for family and friends; we can also feel sad and lonely, reminiscing about days gone by and wanting to connect more deeply with others, but perhaps lacking the opportunity or skills to do so. For people who have experienced trauma in their lives or struggled with addiction issues, many of…

How to Practice Non-Judgment For a Healthier and More Positive Mindset

Just about every single thing you experience is filtered and categorized as positive, negative or neutral by your mind. When certain experiences are judged as “positive,” and create positive feelings, we tend to hold on to these and grasp for more. Other situations we encounter may be judged as “negative,” so we resist and avoid them. Sometimes we also judge things as “neutral,” and those things we tend to give less significance to. In this sense, your mind acts like a judging machine. The truth is, making judgements is a…

3 Ways a Plant-Based Diet Can Help You with Addiction Recovery 

The American Institute for Cancer Research says that health experts agree; putting mostly plant-based foods on your plate is the healthiest diet you can consume. However, we believe a plant-based “diet” isn’t so much of a strict diet, as it is a chosen health conscious lifestyle for many— and it’s one of the best ways to support a healthy mind and body in recovery.   Plant foods (aka: the unprocessed foods found in nature) provide your body with healing anti-inflammatory compounds, fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals. All of these…

Could You Be Suffering From a Behavioural Addiction and Not Even Know it?

  Addiction has become what many of us refer to as the ‘epidemic of this generation’. Whether it comes up in conversation with your friends, while you’re browsing the internet or watching the news, the subject of dependency is all too familiar with both the young and middle aged generations. But addiction isn’t just related to using substances like drugs and alcohol— it can show up in our life through our behaviour. The problem with behavioural addiction is that many of us don’t even know we’re experiencing it. Research has identified…