The Hidden Struggle of TV Presenter Richard Osman: Overcoming Food Addiction

Richard Osman is a well-known TV presenter and, more recently, best-selling author of The Thursday Murder Club.  

Even though he's been appearing on our TVs since 2009 on BBC’s Pointless, Osman has only spoken about his struggles with food in recent years. 

It’s a daily struggle to deal with a food addiction for Richard Osman, which has been in his life since he was a child, from the age of 9. 

Food Addiction - Richard Osman's Story

What Is a Food Addiction? 

A food addiction covers a spectrum of food-related struggles, including compulsive eating, experiencing strong cravings for certain types of food and binge-eating or excessive over-eating. 

One person won’t experience their food addiction in the same way as the next person, as they could have cravings for different foods, and deal with their emotions in unique ways, which means their symptoms would present differently. 

Additionally, it’s also referred to as an ‘eating addiction’ by some doctors.  

The Difference with Food Addictions 

On the Diary of a CEO podcast in late 2022, Osman talked with Steven Bartlett about the different approach to tackling a food addiction.  

With alcohol and substance addiction, the treatment and recovery process involves abstaining entirely from what the person is addicted to. Despite being “unbelievably difficult”, there is “a zero tolerance policy”.  

However, food is a necessity to all of us. This means that the recovery for a food addiction is about creating boundaries with food and working to figure out the root cause of the addiction in therapy, like with all addictions. 

The Link Between Food Addiction & Eating Disorders

Food addiction and eating disorders have a lot of overlap, one often leads into the other, and the unhealthy behaviours can be similar.  

It’s important to stay proactive when it comes to looking for signs of these struggles, either within yourself, a friend or family member, as it’s best to get help as soon as possible.  

The treatments for food addiction and eating disorders include therapies, medication, and support groups. These all help people to reduce their unhealthy behaviours and eventually overcome their addiction or disorder. 

Reach Out for Support

It’s always easier said than done, but reaching out for support when you’re struggling with a food addiction or an eating disorder is the first step on the road to recovery.  

At New Leaf, we are a residential addiction rehabilitation centre that specialises in providing support for those in their recovery journey.  

Reach out to New Leaf for support with your addiction, or if you’d like to help a friend.