​Julie Shannon

​UKCP Registered

Clinical Psychotherapist

​MA ADEP Dip Add Couns 

Compulsive Eating

Whilst food is a necessity of life it is also a source of pleasure and a means of social engagement.

We use food to comfort ourselves, to nurture our loved ones, and to celebrate special events. But for some, the need to eat can become compulsive and uncontrollable.  Although you may try to control addictive behaviour through dieting or self-regulation, you will tend to turn back to overeating in response to stress, anger, or emotional pain.

Unlike alcohol or illicit drugs, food is necessary for physical survival. Yet like drugs and alcohol, food triggers brain chemicals that create feelings of pleasure and comfort. For people who suffer from food addiction, consuming large quantities of food — usually highly palatable foods rich in fat, sugar, or starch — initially offers a rush of pleasurable sensations or a release from emotional distress. Yet these positive responses are soon followed by feelings of shame, guilt, and physical discomfort.

Have you experienced:

  • Obsessive food cravings, combined with a preoccupation with obtaining and consuming food
  • Repeated attempts to stop overeating, followed by self sabotage and return to addictive eating
  • Loss of control over how much, how often and where overeating occurs
  • A pattern of eating alone in order to avoid negative attention from others


Professional treatment is often required to break the cycle of addictive overeating and restore a healthy relationship to food. 

julie@julieshannonpsychotherapist.co.uk 
Tel: 07970 914960
UKCP Registration Number 2011163429