Too Much Eating - Health or Hardship?
Posted By HealthcareOnTime Team
Posted on 2021-10-28
Ever opened a bag of chips planning to have a small snack,
only to find yourself peeping into an empty bag just a few
moments later? It is no secret that obesity rates have rose
in India and more than 13.5 crore individuals are affected
by obesity. Even the healthiest people go through phases
where tog much work, too many parties leading them to
overindulge on sweets, greasy burgers, or office snacks.
When you associate foods with events and occasions, you
begin to adopt those emotional links every time you are
triggered. For example, every time you feel stressed or tired,
you reach for ice, cream out of comfort. Why are we eating
so much food? Why is it so hard to stop? The answer lies in
Why Do We Eat?
Basically, we eat for 2 reasons; First, when we require energy
for our body needs and to keep our biological system balanced.
Second, when we eat for pleasure or to manage our emotions.
Talking scientifically, the first one is "Homeostatic Eating, and
the second one is "Hedonic Eating." The hunger hormone, Ghrelin
rises our appetite, it peaks just before meals and falls during and
immediately after eating. But ghrelin is not the only factor or the
decision maker to eat food. Hunger and eating is shaped by many
factors, including our genes, social cues, learned behavior,
environmental factors, hormones, etc.
Our body has a system for managing the long-term energy
and nutrient needs called the "Leptin Feedback Loop. Leptin
is a hormone, released by fat tissue which tells the brain
about the energy consumption and how much excess energy
has been stored up (as fat). If the stored energy and leptin
levels remain stable over time then the metabolic rate stays
high and if stored energy and leptin drop over time, it sends
a message to the brain that we need to start preventing
Now, if the stored energy and leptin go up over time, you will
want to eat less..right? Unfortunately, you cannot always count
on that response. How much leptin will rise when you start eating
more and how your brain responds to the increased levels of leptin
also varies from person to person. Hence, it is complicated and
science still does not have "the secret" to hunger and over-eating yet.
Tasty + Fun - Dangerous Combination
Make something salty, sweet, starchy, and fatty, then add in some
extra flavors, scents, appealing colors and a pleasing mouth-feel
for good measure, and it eventually leads us to over-eat. These
type of foods have a winning combination for keeping us interested
-A lot of calories in a small package
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-High fat content
-High refined starch and/or sugar content
-Pleasing texture such as creamy or crunchy
Other flavor enhancers, additives to satisfy the taste buds
Drugs, such as caffeine or alcohol All these qualities taken in
excess has a negative impact on our body. But our brain loves
processed foods and we never feel full or satiated when we
eat them! Also, our brain forgets about its natural stop signals
in favor of getting more of that delicious "hit" from food reward.
Our hedonic pleasure system starts bullying our homeostatic
energy-balancing system. Overeating can lead to unwanted
weight gain, which increases many risks. But it is not just
about the unwanted calories.
This is how the body responds when you overeat
Fills with extra acid from the stomach resulting in heart burn
Speeds up as the metabolism increases to digest extra food
Expands beyond its normal size to adjust the large amount
of food, which pushes on other organs and make us feel uncomfortable
- liver and Pancreas
Works harder to secrete extra hormones and enzymes to break
Absorb macronutrients, vitamins and minerals for energy or fat
Recovering from Overeating
Resetting mindset by eating healthy food can habituate the brain
to eat healthy and avoid overeating. Take things one day at a time
and in small sets every day.
There is a reason why you never feel completely satisfied after eating
sugary and fatty foods. Those foods lack fiber and protein which keeps
the blood-sugar blood-sugar levels stabilized and hunger at bay. So fill up your
plates with fiber-rich foods.
-Make a weekly and monthly healthy meal plan in order to resist the urge of
- Last but not the least, exercise! Nutrition and fitness go hand in hand and
no one can have good health without both which is why incorporating
exercise in your routine is important! Even right amount of routine
exercise helps to control hunger or appetite by curbing ghrelin.
Therefore, being aware of your relationship with your food is the
most important thing to know how to get back on track after a
period of overindulgence. When you embrace your imperfect
eating habits, you learn what your challenges and temptations
are, and then anyone can create strategies to fight overeating!