I’m going to briefly discuss the basic organization of the mind so that you can understand why we so often choose against our own health and our deepest desires.
We’ve emphasized through this entire series that we must treat our body and mind according to their designs, and we’ve discussed a very simplistic version of what that means. We’ve discussed how, like a car, our body must be given the right information and the right care to function well for us, and that if provided the right information, the body is well designed to thrive, and to feel good, and to experience health and longevity.
Your mind is designed to take in all the information that your body is experiencing. This information comes in the form of the foods you eat, your environment, your social relationships, your movement patterns, your sleep, stress, emotional states, and many other influencers. All of this information is processed, and then your mind directs your responses to this. It does this by creating experiences that you feel, as well as sending signals to your body for how it should function.
Do you often feel completely full after a meal, to the point of discomfort, and then actually find yourself looking in the fridge a couple hours later? Pay attention to this and then become intuitive about your eating. In this post, I provide you with 9 strategies to help you eat smarter and healthier.
The reward system in our brain is meant to promote our survival. It works off of a neurotransmitter called dopamine. This neurotransmitter is associated with motivation and desire. In addition, when the reward system triggers, we get a bit of adrenaline, which creates a small rush, a feeling of stress, perhaps positive stress.
We discussed the characteristics of foods that trigger the reward system and override our control of eating. It’s important to note these foods also allow for a disruption in the hormonal processes that would control our eating. These types of foods appear to interfere with leptin doing its job of regulating our energy balance. They also may contribute to chronic inflammation in our brain which impacts our mental function and can create resistance to the leptin we secrete to naturally regulate our body weight.