You may think you are just heading to the local grocery store to pick up Cheerios, but they’ve already gotten into your brain.
Going to the supermarket for one thing, even whole-grain, healthy-ish Cheerios, and emerging with a whole cart full of stuff is a collective experience. It just seems to happen in spite of our best intentions to get in and get out. Think you are immune? If you have ever gone into a store and come back with food you didn’t know you needed when you walked in, then just maybe they got you.
There is a whole discipline devoted to getting you to buy things that you don’t want, and the people in charge of manipulating your hunter-gatherer brain find the realm of food shopping particularly juicy. Food is primal. We need it to survive. Taking that survival need for meat and drink and translating it into “I gotta have Pop Tarts now or I’ll die” is a challenge with great profit and rewards — for the manufacturers and the marketers.
Part science and part psychology, there are many factors that work together to get you to buy what they want you to buy and lots of it. You may be thinking that you are choosing something to satisfy a craving, but they are probably the ones that put the craving there, right in your central nervous system. This is why many people cannot stop eating certain products even though it causes them harm such as obesity, lethargy and disease.
The food that most of us eat today barely resembles the food our ancestors ate. Instead of being hunted or grown, the majority of food is created in factories. The good side of this is that there is more food available than ever. The bad side is that most of it can hardly be called food.
Chemical engineers have created food additives with the goal not of making food more nutritious but making it more addictive, targeting the reward centers of the brain and actually changing the brain chemistry to ensure repeat purchases at a low cost. In other words, the more you eat a product full of chemicals, the more you need that fix. They are hijacking our brains.
James Braly, MD, is the medical director of York Nutritional Laboratories and the author of Food Allergy Relief. He says withdrawal symptoms can include headaches, insomnia, irritability, depression and even mood changes. This is why someone might feel murderous when their roommate or significant other ate the last bowl of Lucky Charms.
“People with food cravings may actually have neurochemical and hormonal imbalances that trigger these cravings,” Braly says, as reviewed on WebMD.
The old adage is “Everything in moderation.” Unfortunately, when it comes to chemical manipulation of your brain, moderation just doesn’t make sense. Breaking free of the addictive chemicals is the only way to take back your body, and it is your responsibility to do so. Meanwhile, manufacturers and marketers try to seduce you back. Consider it the tenth circle of hell.
There is another old adage, “You are what you eat.” Consider this when you choose how to fuel yourself and the members of your family. Eat as much fresh, responsibly produced food as possible, and when it comes to long-term food storage, make sure your food is coming from a responsible source.
One way to boost your chances of successfully getting these marketers and manufacturers out of your brain is to replace their harmful chemicals with your own body’s natural serotonin, the feel-good stuff. You can do this by increasing your exposure to sunlight, getting enough deep restful sleep, fitting in at least 60 minutes of moderately intense exercise, and avoiding artificial stimulants. For some, eliminating suspected food allergens, such as gluten, may also heal your brain, thanks to a well-documented gut-brain connection.
There is also the whole foods option of chemical detox. Activz Whole Foods is a 100% totally organic, non-GMO option that helps heal damaged bodies and give the energy and vigor you had when you were a 20 year-old. Okay…maybe 30. Check them out in our online store at: http://www.efoodsdirect.com/shop/activz-whole-food-nutrition-simplified/.
Image Source: Morguefile