"I have never met an anorexic or bulimic who was not a traumatised person.”
At the core of Dr Maté's compelling body of work on addiction is the notion that all addiction is ubiquitous, and it has many manifestations that cuts across all social demographics. This is in stark contrast to the popular portrayal of addiction as an affliction relegated to marginalised populations. Whilst many eating disorders discussions focus on body image issues and appearance with a multi-million dollar industry targeting at weight-loss alone, Dr Maté argues the compulsion to change our body, and in fact all addiction have all their roots in feelings and beliefs of unworthiness, inadequacy and self-loathing to name a few that we internalise and come to identify during early childhood experience or growing up in a dysfunctional household. Research has shown that the more types of childhood adversity a person experienced – the higher their risk of chronic disease, mental illness, violence, being a victim of violence and a bunch of other consequences manifesting later in adulthood. https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/acestudy/about.html
As we grow and develop as a child, we are completely dependent on those around us. We have to learn to love our caregivers no matter what. If during those formative years, we do not have our basic needs met for safety, security, love, touch and support of many kinds, we may learn on a subconscious level either to have these needs filled in with more harmful ways (i.e. the quick fix of love through a drug, alcohol or food) or we learn that love and nurturing comes also with pain. These patterns become hardwired into our nervous system and our subconscious mind that we learn to seek nurturing outside of ourselves instead of from within.
For those with eating disorders, eating is no longer an act of providing nutrition, but instead an act of seeking happiness, or a brief end to the inner pain that they experience. When you have a eating disorder (whether its anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, body dysmorphia, binge eating), you have a person who is desperately trying to exert some control over themselves. Eating disorders can occur as a result of chemical imbalances in the body. Bulimia may also be caused by a traumatic event, stressful environment, sad experience, such as the loss of a loved one. Some other events can also trigger eating disorders in people, like failure to achieve goals in life, a attempt to gain control of their life and also symptoms of OCD can be a reason underlying why some people have issues with food or their body.
Given that the powerful impact of the early environment on brain development and eating habits, many eating disorder sufferers may feel hopeless about recovery from emotional eating and food addiction. However, there is one good reason not to despair. Your brain is an incredibly resilient organ: some important circuits continue to develop throughout our entire life span. The good news is that we can rewire our brain at any age. Neuroplasticity refers to the brain’s ability to reconfigure itself, to establish and to dissolve connections between its different parts. We can learn how to use the brain’s inherent architecture and formal capacities to recreate ourselves and change our habits by drawing on the capacity and the inner resources inside us to heal our wounds, release our mistaken beliefs, reclaim our forgotten innocence, and learn to accept and love ourselves for who we are.
How iBogaine Can Help People With Eating Disorders Find The Root Cause of Their Issues?
Ibogaine is an addiction interruptor, not a cure. It creates a symptom-free "window of opportunity" and can be catalyst for personal transformation, where the individual can cognitively choose to take back control of his or her life. Eating disorders don't just appear overnight for no reason either. Many people who are binge eaters, anorexic or bulimic have had traumatic experiences take place in their lives that were never addressed or fully dealt with and that's what triggered their eating disorder. iBogaine is different from other conventional methods used to treat eating disorders. One of the greatest effects of ibogaine is that it will clear the neural pathways which constituent negative behavioural patterns such as depression. But it will leave the positive ones. In other words, ibogaine resets your neurotransmitter mechanisms, which re-balances your neurotransmitters. Your neurotransmitters are the chemicals in your brain that decide if you're happy, sad, excited, depressed etc...
As the re-balancing of your neurotransmitters in the brain takes place during ibogaine treatment, it means that the food and weight obsession is similarly stopped. The eating disorder individual will first have a dreamlike feeling for 24-36 hours once they have taken Ibogaine. The dreamlike experience has both physical and psychological benefits. The dream is actually a deep insight into the person’s past. During this dreamlike experience, the individual can recall the reasons for their addiction to food and discover the root cause of their issues and enables the person to process their past experiences, paving the way for envisioning a free and happy future. However, this visionary aspect is not experienced by everyone. It varies depending on your genetics, physiology, cultural conditioning, etc. This can be a very beneficial experience even if there are no dreams or even clear messages during your ibogaine treatment. The Ibogaine still does the job of resetting and rebalancing the body and mind.
After the treatment, the brain is reset the brain to the pre-addiction state and this offers a window of opportunity for the individual to take stock and look into after care mental help for their recovery, to understand and identify their triggers and ways to manage stress once they are back in their home environment. Many individuals report that post Ibogaine not only brings them back to a state of mental clarity providing them with a vision of a wonderful opportunity-filled future, but as importantly, it leaves them there in that state of mental clarity; a place where they are not only freed from crippling emotions, but also restored chemically, freeing the patient from the abnormal mental states of depression and anxiety.
Am I good candiate for ibogaine treatment if I have a eating disorder?
People who’ve come for ibogaine treatment of eating disorders are otherwise healthy, spiritual individuals who got sick and tired of taking toxic substances to control their weight. From stick thin bulimics to muscular fitness buffs who all found that food and dieting was controlling all aspects of their lives and they got sick and tired of doing it. Ibogaine treatment can set you free by addressing the root cause of your issues and helping you gain a sense that your body is truly a temple and will allow you to literally see that through your visions. With ibogaine, it also brings you a newfound sense of control and respect for your own body.
It takes great effort, willpower and discipline to stay focused and not revert to the old patterns of thinking and acting post ibogaine treatment. The aftercare period is extremely important and should be evaluated very carefully before and after the treatment. By healing your body, mind and spirit holistically from the inside out gives you the strength and power to take back your life. With our help, you can reverse unhealthy behavioural patterns and make a full and lasting recovery. If you are ready to set free from past trauma we’re here to help.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to start a private conversation for your recovery.
Dr Gabor Maté, renowned Canadian physician and best-selling author of In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts:Close Encounters with Addiction.