Search Health in Google

Custom Search

09 February, 2009

How To-103: "How to Overcome an Addiction to Fast Food"

How to Overcome an Addiction to Fast Food

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Fast food is very unhealthy, and regular consumption of fast food can lead to a host of medical problems. Additionally, fast food is bad for the earth, as it increases wasteful and harmful farming practices. If you are addicted to fast food, here is how to overcome your addiction.


  1. Watch a video, DVD, or television program on the dangers of fast food. This will probably put you off eating it, as the program will likely go into graphic detail about the high fat, salt and sugar levels in the foods. Two excellent examples are the films "Super Size Me" and "Fast Food Nation".
  2. Go to your local supermarket, and instead of heading straight to the ice cream section, go to a healthier alternative such as the aisles that contain fruits and grains.
  3. Write down what foods you like. If any of them are considered healthy, you can keep them; if not, you should find all of those foods in your house and find some method of throwing them away.
  4. Substitute the unhealthy foods for healthier alternatives. If you like burgers, try a steak, or something a bit cheaper. Try some new foods. Concentrate on foods that have lots of grains and/or vegetables in them.
  5. Avoid your local fast food restaurants as much as possible. Whenever you pass one, or any other fast food outlet, think back to the program you saw and what that type of food is doing to your insides. If you are without food and your only option is a fast food place, buy the healthy options such as salads or grilled chicken.
  6. Learn to cook. A well-cooked meal using fresh ingredients is not only better for you, but it also tastes better. Learning to cook can help you appreciate food and you will see that much of the "flavor" of fast food is just the taste of fat.
  7. Consult a registered dietitian in your area for many tips on healthier alternatives, eating behavior modification, timing of meals, and where to get healthy foods in your locale. Allow a professional to get you off on the right foot to provide for a competitive edge over the current obesogenic, fast-food hungry society.


  • If you and your friends are addicted to fast food, you can all give it up together. This way you will have less temptation than if your friends are chomping away on burgers in front of you. You may look into groups or networks of healthy people to surround yourself with to provide support through this important stage of life.
  • Recommended reading: "Fast Food Nation", by Eric Schlosser. This book gives you a sense of fast food's effect on your health, and also its effects on the global economy, agriculture, immigrants, etc. You'll think about this book when you feel tempted to go to the drive-through.
  • Try not to carry cash with you. Having cash on hand makes it that much easier to stop at a fast food place on the way home, and there's something sad about charging a burger and fries to your credit card that might deter you from using plastic.
  • Putting some numbers to your fast food habit might make the reality sink in. Estimate or keep track of how much money you spend and how many calories you consume each week or month on fast food--it will shock you.
  • Stop going for the Drive-Ins, and head over to your local market and pick up some health products or such items like, Lean Cuisine.
  • Try to just ignore fast food restaurants and don't enter them. If you get the urge just try to take that urge and turn it into a hobby such as sports and outdoor activities.
  • The good news is that, unlike other addictions such as drugs and smoking, it will not kill you to enjoy a favorite unhealthy food once or twice a month. Just make sure you get it to go so that you will not order more after you finish a small portion.


  • As with overcoming any addiction, you will need a lot of willpower.

Things You'll Need

  • Cook books

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Overcome an Addiction to Fast Food. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

No comments: