Everyday we hear of people complaining about putting on weight, I myself am a culprit of this. We make loads of excuses for us putting on weight, it’s my sedentary job, I’m still growing, it’s my slow metabolism.
In fact, it’s not our fault we are overeating, we are victims of the food industry. This industry uses our psychological needs to promote addictive, unhealthy foods. Do you ever wonder why just one bite isn’t enough? We have this NEED to have some more chocolate or just one more bite of that cake.
All around us are triggers for eating and choosing the wrong foods.
That irresistible smell of freshly baked cakes when you walk into a supermarket. Or that huge poster showing the great details of donuts and ice cream.
Dr David Lewis, co-author of ‘Fat Planet’ days all these are just cues that cause us to eat more. In fact there are a whole team of chemists, neurologists and marketing executives working behind the scenes to ensure you buy a food product.
“Everything from aromas, to colours, to sounds- a pringle for example snaps in such a way to sound fresh and healthy like a vegetable and this triggers a response in the brain to eat more.”
This is also why one Krispy Kreme is never enough.
When you have sugar, it floods your brain with feel good chemicals, to get that same buzz you need to eat more and more sugar.
This doesn’t mean we have no hand in the choices we make. In fact, our choices are affected by stress and a lack of sleep. When you are sleep deprived and stressed, your brain goes for the most rewarding choice- this is usually an unhealthy one.
The solution you make ask.
Getting to bed early is the key, just one hour of sleep deprivation can lead to a compensation of 500 calories through food. Exercise is also very important. Not for weight loss but for its anti inflammatory and mood boosting effect.
We need at least one hour of daily walking to have any beneficial effect. Also it’s hard to eat less when we use big plates. One way to trick your brain into thinking there’s more food is by using smaller plates.
One last point of advice. Snacking usually occurs when you are stressed, ie before starting a report or sitting down for work. The trick is to hide your treats, put them away in a drawer or far away from reach. Study by Dr Lewis showed that chocolate consumption was reduced by treats being shut away compared to when they were in front.
The food industry may be tricking us but we need to step up our game and fight back!
Ps. I know the image of treats below doesn’t help. But how cute does the fruit look?