James Argent of TOWIE fame has been talking on Loose Women about his binge eating disorder which he’s suffered with for over half his life.

He’s recently had drastic surgery to get rid of his excess weight but acknowledges that this is just part of the problem.

And he’s right. Binge eating is multifaceted. We live in a world where food is in abundance, we lead far more stressful lives now than ever and there’s a lot that I could say on the subject of big food giants pumping processed foods with crap.

But these are things that are unlikely to change in my lifetime we have to learn to respond differently to them and so the changes have to come from within.

James talks about not liking himself and this is a huge driver of binge eating. When you have a terrible relationship with yourself your reactions to situations are markedly different to people who are secure within themselves.

If someone’s critical for example (which sadly I’m sure he gets a lot on social media), someone who’s full of self-belief will just brush it off as idiots but someone like James (and like I used to be) will take it as there’s something wrong with them and internalise it and then go on to use food to feel better.

When you have a very poor and negative belief system about yourself and your world your decision making is different, you handle stressful situations poorly and you live a life of self-loathing and shame.

And then you need to take that pain away with food.

But of course you hate yourself afterwards for it and so the circle continues. Food is an addiction just like drugs and alcohol and the drivers of each can be very similar.

1 in 50 people have an eating disorder. If it’s not you then it’s likely you’ll know someone who does but it’s still stigmatised. So let’s stop treating food addiction as shameful and look at the reasons WHY people like James have a desperate need for it. We need to show compassion and help build self-esteem and confidence and support not ridicule.