I am a guy who tries to stay healthy and writes about it. But I also have a sweet tooth which can be my downfall. I can eat healthy all day but then have to fight off cravings for snacks at bay after dinner. Overall I do a pretty good job with this fight, but would like to do better.
Recently I read the post “Your Brain on Sugar” on fellow bloggers Tony’s website, which motivated me to try harder. Especially interesting is the science that eating sweets can rewire our brains to crave more sweets, leading potentially to a vicious circle . I found more on this here. I am fascinated with the relatively new science of neuroplasticity, and am a fan of doing things like meditation, exercise, and lifelong learning, that affect my brain positively. And less of a fan of things like eating junk that might affect it negatively.
So I’m going to try being really strict about sweets. No candy, no cookies, or other sweet junk. Normally I would think this is too strict. I like to separate foods into “healthy, eat on a regular basis”, or “special treats”. I don’t like the idea of forbidden foods. But since sweets are the “special treats” that are most likely to get out of hand for me, I thought I’d try being stricter for awhile and see what happens. I’ll try to make it to the 3 weeks that is the rule-of-thumb time for establishing or breaking habits and see what happens.
I realize I’ve kind of picked the wrong time of year for this. But actually I associate special dinner foods with this Holiday season more than the sweet stuff. And in the past I’ve found myself not enjoying Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner because I was too full from eating junk beforehand. I’m happy to say that did not happen this Thanksgiving.
Even though Tony’s post was on November 21, I’m just getting around to trying this, we’ll see how it goes…
- Hebebrand , J, et al, ‘“Eating addiction”, rather than “food addiction”, better captures addictive-like eating behavior’, Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 2014, available online here.