I have noticed that I seem to have no self control when I eat cooked food. If I make a vegan soup, for example, I am not content with 1 or 2 bowls. I can eat an entire pot meant for 4-5 people. I'm also this way with garbanzo beans. I can easily eat 2-3 cans in one sitting. Even after doing that, I could go eat half a watermelon or 2-3 bananas. I don't like when I do this, because I feel physically and mentally unwell. I then obsess about how much I have eaten, and it negatively affects my mood (almost to the point of depression). I don't know why I continue to let this happen, and I just wish I could eat like a normal person. I know this will sound weird, but I actually feel the best, at least mentally, when I am restrictive with my diet. In situations where I eat insufficient Calories, I feel oddly satisfied. I think part of the reason I get upset about eating so much is that my brain feels happy when I limit food. It's not a good mindset, but I can't seem to change it. Can anyone else relate?
I can totally relate. I have the same lack of self control with cooked food, especially the worst stuff like pizza (when I'm not eating raw I'm vegetarian, not vegan). I then feel crappy about having just eaten way too much, but I try to move past those feelings by getting back on track right away and that usually helps me feel much better, both physically and mentally, pretty quickly. Try not to dwell on bad decisions or be too hard on yourself. That's just wasted mental energy. Instead, use the way you feel after those bad decisions as a reason to make better decisions to support your goals. And certainly try not to eat insufficient calories as you say. Listen to your body and eat what you need.
I think most people struggle with food in one way or another. I would keep trying different approaches and find what works for you. It may be a simple addition of more greens and/or more omega 3 fats that help you meet your nutritional needs better and therefore keep you feeling satisfied. Thereby making it easier to stay away from or limit the addictive stuff.
Many people describe cooked food as addictive. And certainly the more processed, the more variety, the more interesting and complex we make the foods taste, the more addictive they become. Our society is not natural nor health supporting- mentally or physically. So it takes work and effort and many trials to find what works. And what works for you now can change over time. So hone those patience muscles and keep trying. :)
Some resources that I have loved and that I think may be helpful for you:
http://www.veganmedicaldoctor.com/ <This is Dr. Brooke Goldner M.D., sign up for her next live webinar, they are excellent!!!
Oh and for anyone reading this who struggles with cravings for animal products, this talk is truly the best!