Lunch or dinner rolls around and we get hungry. What happens is the brain and the body debates on what to eat that day or moment. There’s constant signaling with each other, communicating information regarding how hungry or full you are, what to eat, and how much you’re going to eat that sitting.
This could be having another slice of banana cream pie, having a fortified green smoothie, or a burger with extra sauce and fries. What eating these different types of foods, either healthy or detrimental, does is causes constant and conflicting signals which are sent back and forth between the brain and the body.
The hypothalamus area of the brain is the body’s control center, where being hungry or feeling full are registered. This is where metabolism is regulated and appetite is controlled, this by billions of neurons.
What these brain cells does is communicates with each other, this by constantly sending messages regarding how you’re feeling, your mood, and how hungry you are.
These chemicals which are known as neurotransmitters, does is relays these messages from one neuron to another, while distributing them throughout the body.
What most will usually notice, is that eating certain foods does is throws them into different types of moods.
The reason for this is because the type of food that you eat, does is affects the balance of certain neurotransmitters, particularly serotonin and dopamine, which plays key roles when it comes to mood and appetite control.
What the proper balance of these neurotransmitters does is affects the way you feel. Having low levels of serotonin, is associated with simultaneous feelings of anger and hunger, which prompts the term “hangry.”
That Loving Feeling
Once the brain needs serotonin, what some will do is self-medicate themselves by consuming starchy carbohydrates such as cake, bread, or crackers.
What these carbs does is provides the brain with the raw materials, which are needed to synthesize and release the serotonin.
Eating foods which are rich in vitamins and antioxidants, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, are known to help boost levels of tryptophan, which also helps increase serotonin production.
Eating And Behavior
Conversely, what moodiness does is affects the type of food that you choose to eat. What most will crave are foods which are starchy carbs when they feel anxious. What they know is that eating these types of foods does is makes them feel calmer.
When one is feeling nostalgic, or is in need of nurturing, what they’ll choose to eat are familiar comfort foods from their childhood.
There are other chemicals which are found in the body and brain, which influences when you eat, how much you eat, the types of foods that you eat, while determining if you’re even hungry or not, all affecting your mood.
Endorphins are a series of feelgood chemicals which are naturally produced by the brain, this to help you cope better with stress and pain.
What comfort foods, or mood elevators, such as ice cream, chocolate, along with other creamy or sweet foods, does is triggers the release of endorphins.
Endorphins are also conversely thought to trigger cravings for these foods. This is the reason why dietitians will constantly warn individuals not to surrender to these cravings, or use these foods as stress relievers. What usually happens is that it shows up on the waistline.
Other Foods Affecting Mood
While consuming carbohydrates are calming, eating high protein foods such as beef, poultry, or fatty fish, does is helps boost the production of certain neurotransmitters which increases alertness.
So if you’re looking to increase your mental energy, what’s recommended is eating a high protein, low carbohydrate meal.
If you’re wanting to calm your mind, then consume more carbs combined with protein such as salmon, or other types of fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Doing so is also known to ease the symptoms of depression.
Addicted To Food
What some claim is that they’re addicted to certain types of foods, such as carbs and especially sugar, this to the point that once they begin eating, they can’t stop.
The key neurotransmitter that’s involved in this type of addictive behavior is dopamine. What research has discovered, is that what sugar and certain carbs does, is provokes the same dopamine response that addictive recreational drugs has on the brain.
What researchers has questioned is whether if the addiction to these foods, is specific to the foods which underlies the obesity.
Or, if there are other reactions that are facilitated by the dopamine, which directly affects the individual’s relationship with certain foods, which causes them to overeat.
The suggestion is that what appears like an addiction to these foods, is an addiction to just eating food itself. So attempting to avoid these addictive foods most likely isn’t the solution, while avoiding certain behaviors might be.
Food And Behavior
One thing that’s known is that when it comes to skipping meals or choosing to overeat, which isn’t advised habits to adopt, does is sends certain chemicals and hormones in the brain into a tailspin.
What this triggers is the classic “cause and effect” of binge eating, gaining weight, then becoming obese. So what’s advised is sticking to the recommendation, that you should eat as routine as possible on a set diet.
The meals should be strategically planned out, be nutritionally balanced, and the snacks should include an array of nourishment, all while avoiding impulse eating, and maintaining good physical health.
What’s known for certain is that there’s a strong correlation between the foods that you eat, the one’s that you crave, are constantly dictated by your mood. That eating certain foods will do is directly alter your behavior.