Many of us think of body care as something similar to the routine maintenance we give our car. We just put the fuel in and it runs, and every now and then, we take it to the shop for a tune up to keep it functioning at its highest potential. We don’t even have to be there for this operation to achieve its intended results.
But the human body is designed a little differently. Our degree of presence — the quality of attention we pay — is actually very important when it comes to how well we process the food we eat. We can’t just check out mentally while those digestive organs do all the work, at least, not if we want our body to operate like the powerful, efficient, life-affirming vehicle it’s meant to be.
Join Emily Rosen, Director of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, as she explains why conscious awareness makes such a difference in our appetite and metabolism in this inspiring new video from #IPEtv!
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: More Awareness, Less Appetite
Have you ever had the experience of eating a good-sized meal, not paying much attention to it, and after finishing noticed that your belly felt full but your mouth was still hungry? Have you ever wondered why the body would behave in such a strange way by giving you this mixed message?
Simply put, the brain must experience taste, pleasure, aroma, and satisfaction so it can accurately assess a the nutrient profile of a meal and catalyze our most efficient digestive force, and our natural appetite regulation. It’s simply the way we are designed. When we eat too fast or fail to notice our food, the brain interprets this missed experience as hunger. It’s not smart enough to say to us “Hey, you inhaled your breakfast, ate like a maniac during lunch, and snacked like a hungry beast. You don’t need any more food.” The brain simply says “I don’t remember eating anything. I didn’t get any satisfaction. Nothing happened. HUNGRY.”
And so we reach for more food.
That’s why so many people who say they have an overeating problem don’t. Their problem is that they don’t eat when they eat. They have little awareness of their meals and fail to satisfy the metabolic requirement taste, pleasure, and emotional satisfaction, which results in a continued longing for food. What’s ironic is that those who fall into this category think they have a willpower problem. But they don’t – actually, lack of willpower is just a minor player in our overeating. Drug companies spend millions researching and developing new appetite-suppressing compounds while unsuspecting eaters exert great effort to control their desire for food, and it’s all a monumental misuse of energy. So if you’ve been beating yourself up because you think you’ve failed in the willpower department, it’s time to call off the dogs.
Simply put, the less awareness you bring to the table, the more you’ll need to eat.
It’s clear, then, that our appetite is genetically designed to be fulfilled rather than suppressed. So why not give up a war that can never be won – attacking your need to eat – and achieve a metabolic victory by doing the opposite of what you’ve been taught? Give your body and soul exactly what they want – an experience of eating that’s rich in the fruits of awareness – and you’ll never need to fight yourself again.
I hope this was helpful. Thanks so much for your time and interest. In the comments below, please let us know your thoughts. We love hearing from you and we read and respond to every comment!
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