Foods that cause addiction
If each time you enter a fast food place you feel like you can’t
stop eating, it may be good for you to know you’re not the only
one. There are certain foods that make people eat compulsively.
Among the foods that cause this effect are those that combine fat, salt, and sugar. This is explained by Dr. David Kessler, author of “The End of Overeating,” who dedicated to study those who eat compulsively, in order to explain the power of food. “Eating foods with a high sugar, fat, and salt content lead us to crave for more foods of this kind.
Which foods lead us to keep on eating, even after we’re satisfied?
1. “Junk” Food:”A study led by The Scropps Research Institute, published in Nature Neuroscience, showed that fast foods have “addictive” properties because, as drugs, they make it very difficult to stop eating. This happens especially with high-calorie and high-fat foods, like bacon and sausages, for example, with lead people to overeat.
According to this study, unlimited consumption of these pleasure-producing foods leads to neuroadaptative responses in the brain, which trigger compulsive eating, similar to what happens with addictions.
Among the neuroadaptors that were analyzed is D2 receptor, a neurotransmitter that is released by the brain with “pleasure,” as produced by drugs, sex, and food.
2. Carbohydrates:According to the American Heart Association, carbohydrates increase insulin levels, which lowers blood sugar. This causes food cravings and, in some people, a special craving for carbs, in order to obtain a quick energy source. Insulin is a hormone used by the body to convert sugar, starches, and other compounds into energy.
In turn, some studies have explained the connection between mind, mood, and food, due to decreased serotonin levels. According to the experts, people with carbohydrate cravings have low levels of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps decrease fear, anxiety, and stress, while improving mood and relaxation.
3. Chocolate:Apparently, it has the same effects of junk food. In his book, “The Seduction of Food,” Dr. Neal Barnard explains that chocolate stimulates the same part of the brain as drugs. In addition, chocolate has certain ingredients that stimulate the nervous system, like caffeine, theobromine—which is extracted from cocoa and is also used in certain medicines—and phenylethylamine, an aromatic amine, similar to amphetamines.
4. Cheese:It has an ingredient that is also found in chocolate: phenylethylamine. Doctors Donald F. Klein and Michael Lebowitz, from the Psychiatric Institute of New York, attribute love feelings to phenylethylamine, explaining that people who are in love have large amounts of this component in their brains. Moreover, a study by Wellcome Laboratories found that cow milk, used to make cheese, has morphine in small amounts, but not in all cases (depending on the animal’s diet) and casein, which could cause addition to this food.
Not everyone feels the same attraction toward the same dishes. Even among those who recognize eating compulsively all the time, there are those who prefer salty foods and those who rather sweets.
However, knowing the foods that may lead to addiction or binge eating can be helpful, because if you already know it may be difficult to stop, it is more likely you’ll look for an alternative that won’t cause this effect. Have you ever seen someone eat tomatoes or lettuce without being able to stop?
© 2016 HolaDoctor