ADDICTED TO SUGARWe first met Christine on the popular TLC television series, Freaky Eaters. The episode which featured her story started out as a "food intervention," where Dr. Mike Dow was called in by her family to help Christine face a serious addiction to sugar. Interventions are highly specialized and structured approaches to helping an addict face the consequences of the addiction and assisting in their decision to seek treatment. In this case, Christine grabbed Dr. Mike's outstretched hand and she hasn't looked back yet! We decided to catch up with Christine approximately one year later.
Finding Christine was the hard part! No, she hasn't changed her place of employment or her residence - but she has changed her vitality for healthy living - body, mind and spirit. I caught up with Chris while she was staying at a luxury hotel in Las Vegas for a weekend getaway with an old friend from Seattle.
She recaps what it was like before Dr. Mike and her road to recovery. "For so many years I numbed myself. I always felt sad...or nothingness. I never felt lovable and I thought my kids hated me because I failed them. I felt like a loser and sought solace in sugary items. I used diet pills to try and keep my weight in check."
Christine goes on to explain, what helped her change. "I finally saw all around me...about how much I was missing in life by feeling sorry for myself. I made me a victim, nobody else. I came to the realization with Dr. Mike's help that life is too short to make yourself (myself) a victim. It was like a light switch went ON. I may have already had some of the tools to face my addiction, but I didn't know how to use
So what is Christine's life like today? "I know people are amazed at the change in me - especially spiritually. I don't crave sugar, cakes, candy or frosting. I've substituted oatmeal, almonds, and raisins. I lose weight naturally and I smile. My co-workers laugh at my "habit" of always having a glass of water with a slice of cucumber because it makes me feel like I'm at a spa! Speaking of co-workers, I am now responsible for meeting and greeting the patrons at the restaurant where I work, instead of hiding in the back where I used to work."
"I've substituted communication with my children for isolation. My daughter is staying with me this summer and we are really bonding. I've re-connected with friends and am taking trips like this one to Las Vegas, where I'll also venture to The Grand Canyon for the first time in my life!"
Christine leaves us with this short phrase which has worked to help her through the regular ups and downs of dealing with any addiction - and indeed for dealing with life:
"Acceptance is the answer to all my ills." We like that.