Junk food is one of the greatest dangers for modern human, but not everyone understands it. For someone, it’s pretty easy to give up fast food, sweets, and pastries, but still, the number of people who can’t overcome the obstacles on the way to healthy diet is much larger. Healthy eating must become not just a habit, but an integral part of a lifestyle for everyone who wants to live long and happy.
6 Best Practices: How to Train Your Brain to Crave Healthily
- Healthy Food
- Train Your Brain to Crave Healthily
Why Is Junk Food so Dangerous for Human Being?
Excessive passion for processed food and snacks belongs to the top reasons for obesity and high disease rates in different countries all over the world, but Americans are the undisputed leaders. They spend more $60 billion a year on snack foods, and this figure is very frightening. Unprocessed foods are created by nature, that’s why human body easily digests them; taste and consistency of such food easily satiate hunger. In contrast to that, junk food and other processed foods contain a big amount of salt, sugar, and flavour enhancers that are very addictive.
Junk food problem isn’t only about your body; it also covers your brain. According to the latest research, abuse of unhealthy food causes addiction and affects the striatum, one of the nuclei of the human forebrain that coordinates multiple aspects of cognition, in particular motivation, making decisions, and reward perception. The fact that the striatum is activated by such things as sex and illegal drugs once again stresses the importance of the situation. Food high in fats and carbs becomes strongly liked, it hyper-activates the addiction centers and thus boosts addiction circuits.
Effective Tips How to Train the Brain to Be “Healthy Food Addicted”
1. Take a clear look at your cravings. Our brain consumes a lot of energy, for that reason it constantly needs nutrients. On the one hand, foods rich in fats and carbs give a powerful boost of energy and activate the production of dopamine that makes us feel happy. On the other hand, they cause addiction circuits in the way described above in order to anticipate their eating by people. To prevent cravings before they begin is the best solution to break the addiction cycle. You should consume more healthy good-tasting foods rich in carbs, as their digestion takes more time and abates the link between the taste of foods and the hyperactivation of the addiction centers.
2. Eat rationally. You shouldn’t just throw food into your mouth; everyone knows this principle, but only a few follow it. Show respect to what you eat – while biting, chewing and swallowing you should pay attention to taste, smell, and structure of the food and satisfy every bite on your plate.
3. Choose the right utensils for eating. Continuing to talk about dishes it’s worth mentioning about the illusions that trick your brain and make your brain feel more sated than it really is. Prefer taller and thinner glasses to shorter and wider ones, because an equal amount of any beverage looks bigger in the former than in the latter. The same situation with plates – people eat more if food is served on the bigger plate and vice versa.
4. Outline the purpose or the cause. If you want to succeed and defeat the old bad habits you need to clearly see why you are doing this and what results you desire to get at the end. Visualize your ideas and you will have a strong motivator. The simplest way to do this is to write down your purpose and cause, or maybe several ones, on a piece of paper and place it where it falls into the eye.
5. Make your cravings healthier. It is difficult to abandon everything at once, that’s why you can cook the cleanest versions of foods you like. If you taste the homemade sweet potato, not fried, but baked in the oven, or eat various fruits instead of candies, you will stay in the winnings. You can always find an alternative way of eating, so you only need to try and not be lazy to cook from scratch. Even your favourite chocolate can be eaten, but only a few pieces of dark chocolate.
6. Realize your weaknesses. You must be conscious not only when you eat, but when you choose food. What made you choose this product? Do I really want this, or is it simply a bad mood? Consciousness is a decisive factor that determines your choice.
Eating habits play an extremely important role in the functioning of the whole organism, and human brain also becomes a victim and a hostage to the consumption of junk food. The only solution is to control yourself and to train your brain by means of the above practices.