An Obese Woman's Struggle With Food

Jennifer Joyner tried everything before realizing true problem
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 30, 2010 7:59 AM CDT
An Obese Woman's Struggle With Food
Jennifer Joyner (not pictured) struggled with food addiction for years.   (Shutter Stock)

(Newser) – Jennifer Joyner was "a longtime member of the morbidly obese," avoiding the reflection of her 336-pound body in the mirror and wondering how her husband could still want her. For years, she could not stop eating, "cheeseburgers and French fries and pepperoni pizzas and chocolate bars smothered in peanut butter, all washed down with gallons of Mountain Dew and sweet tea," she writes on Salon. She didn't enjoy it; she wanted to stop, but although she tried Weight Watchers, Slim Fast, Atkins, a trainer, a gym, doctors, a psychologist, and even talking to a pastor, nothing worked.

After finally, reluctantly undergoing gastric bypass surgery (which resulted in complications, hospitalizations, hair loss, depression, and a 153-pound weight loss), she finds herself in the grocery store one day, buying chips even though she isn't hungry. "I figure it won't hurt to have a couple," but that turns into the whole bag and soon she is "hideously sick." Even so, she does the same thing the next day, and the next, and then it dawns on her: "I am addicted to food." In retrospect, "the classic signs of addiction are so obvious," she writes. If only "even one of the doctors I consulted in all my years of extreme dieting had mentioned food addiction, maybe I wouldn’t have gone through the physical anguish of gastric bypass." Click here for her entire thoughtful essay.
(Read more gastric bypass stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.