Insight into Appetite – Video with Emily Rosen

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If you’re alive on planet Earth, then you likely have an appetite. The problem is, many of us have a challenging relationship with food. And those challenges often lead us into confusion around our appetite. So if you’re the kind of person who finds yourself fighting appetite, wishing it would go away, or simply not quite getting how to manage it in a good way, this is the video for you. Emily Rosen, Chief Operating officer for the Institute for the Psychology of Eating delivers simple and clear guidance around a deeper understanding of appetite that will leave you feeling uplifted and informed.

Expect a nice combination of eating psychology and mind body science:

Here is a transcript of this week’s video:

Hi, I’m Emily Rosen, Chief Operating Officer for the Institute for the Psychology of Eating.

Today’s Topic: Insight into Appetite

Appetite is an absolutely fascinating topic. I love it. In fact, a lot of people forget to love their appetite. These days, it seems like for far too many people, appetite is something we tend to fight. We don’t give it a lot of love. And for that reason, it’s a little harder for appetite to love us back.

I’m going to share with you some insights into appetite.

My objective is for you to come away more empowered and informed about this natural and necessary function of human physiology. With some simple mind body nutrition distinctions and a deeper understanding, you can learn to master this aspect of eating and nourishment in a way that’s much easier than you might think.

So let’s get down to business:

If you’re the kind of person that spends even one moment in opposition to your appetite, fighting it, cursing it, trying to control it, being mad at it, or believing that in any way shape or form that appetite is your problem – then we need to do an intellectual intervention with you immediately. You’re going down a dead-end road.

In fact, your strategy of fighting appetite when it comes to overeating, binge eating, weight issues, and any unwanted eating challenge has almost assuredly been ineffective. Fighting or controlling appetite can last us for a very short period of time. But after that, the natural need of the body takes over. You can only hold your breath for so long. Just because you can hold your breath for three or four or five minutes, means nothing. Eventually, the body’s desire for oxygen supersedes any other strategy we might try.

So here’s what I’d like you to get at the deepest level of your understanding and your being:

  • Appetite is natural
  • Appetite is your friend
  • Appetite is not something to fight

Here’s some interesting mind body science facts about appetite:

The moment you fight your appetite, the moment you think it’s the enemy, the moment you try to artificially control it by limiting the amount of food or nutrition that your body truly needs – we go into a physiologic stress response.

Brain and body literally enter into survival mode. The brain registers a lacking nutrition. It thinks it’s starving. The brain’s imperative is to keep us alive. And therefore our appetite screams louder. That’s because appetite is designed to remind us that we need to eat. If this basic physiologic alarm clock didn’t exist inside us, we could easily forget to eat and starve. That’s why the intelligence of the universe has compassionately given us a lovely taste and desire for food.

The beauty of this is, there is a natural flow to appetite.

It has its own ebbs and tides, just as any natural phenomenon has in the known universe.

Now, when we try to artificially control appetite and suppress it in the interests of losing weight or maintaining it, the stress response that’s activated has a number of interesting effects on the body.

First, appetite will start to scream loudly. From there, it’s easy for us to go into even more anxiety and stress because we can start to believe that we are willpower weaklings because here we are trying to control our appetite, and it’s getting even worse.

Can you see the absolute insanity of this set-up? It’s no different than saying I’m going to artificially control my thirst mechanism, and whenever you’re thirsty you try to suppress it, but the body screams louder for more water – and then you decide that you’re a willpower weakling because you can’t control your need for water. That’s how silly we look and sound when we try to control appetite.

Next, the stress response created when the body is hungry and we are trying to override that hunger will produce more insulin and cortisol – both of these hormones, when secreted in excess, day in and day out, will signal most human bodies to store weight, store fat, and not build muscle. This is the exact opposite of what we are trying to get by suppressing our appetite.

How’s that for a fascinating metabolic surprise?

In addition, while our stress response is screaming at us to eat more food because the body is starving from our artificial appetite control – that same stress will cause us to lose finer distinctions around our appetite. In other words, the body is simply screaming, “Hungry – give me food at all costs!!!”

In such moments, brain and being will NOT be wise enough to say to us, “Hey, you should be slowing down, you should be relaxing, you’ve artificially limited your food supply, what you need is a nice healthy salad and some good healthy protein and some good healthy fat.”

In those stress and survival moments, the brain is screaming at us to eat ANYTHING. And what often results is we’ll be physiologically driven to eat whatever we can get right now, no matter what it is. A starving body will demand anything, even the worst-quality junk food. It doesn’t care at that point. It just wants food. So from a psychophysiologic perspective, the brain loses its ability in stress induced hunger to distinguish the fine nuances of what would be the best food for our body. And so it’s likely that we can reach for the exact foods – usually junk foods or sugar – that would have us eating more than we need, perhaps make us feel ill, and likely make us feel guilty.

The remedy:

Make appetite your friend.
Stop fighting.
Stop working against yourself.
Welcome your natural need for food back to the table.
Get with the program of life, and life will nourish you in a good way.

It’s time to trust.

I hope this was helpful. Please email us at if you have specific questions and we will be sure to get back to you. Thanks so much for your time and interest.

In the comments below, please let us know: What is one of the ways you can welcome your appetite? We love hearing your thoughts!

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