Hypereater? Problematic, but familiar.
I just came across this article about possible addiction-like behavior some people exhibit around high-fat and high-sugar food. You know, let me just quote this damn thing:
It’s not an addiction but it’s similar, and he’s far from alone. Kessler’s research suggests millions share what he calls “conditioned hypereating” — a willpower-sapping drive to eat high-fat, high-sugar foods even when they’re not hungry…
He calls the culprits foods “layered and loaded” with combinations of fat, sugar and salt — and often so processed that you don’t even have to chew much.
Ok, can I say that is uncomfortably familiar? I hate to admit this, but that sounds like exactly the kind of food I have the hardest time with. Making a concerted effort, through intuitive eating principles, to get past some of the psychological issues surrounding these types of foods helped immensely, but if I’m going to overeat or binge, it will always be on those types of foods.
However, this also sounds like a way of pathologizing very common behavior and then focusing only on fat people when it comes to moderating that behavior. I know thin people who eat a large portion of their daily calories from cookies and pastries and such, but they just tend to eat less calories.
So what’s a possible explanation?
At issue is how the brain becomes primed by different stimuli. Neuroscientists increasingly report that fat-and-sugar combinations in particular light up the brain’s dopamine pathway — its pleasure-sensing spot — the same pathway that conditions people to alcohol or drugs.
I’ll probably look at the book when it comes out. I do find this stuff kind of fascinating.
Now, you’ll have to excuse me, I made some cinnamon rolls that I can’t stop thinking about. :p