Being addicted to certain foods, chocolate in particular, can happen due to the ability of chocolate to impact many of the same brain and nervous system pathways typically affected by drug addictions.
Here are 3 reasons chocolate is addictive:
1. Chocolate may interact with some neurotransmitter systems such as dopamine (chocolate contains the dopamine precursor tyrosine), serotonin and endorphins (contained in cocoa and chocolate) that contribute to appetite, reward and mood regulation.
How to kick a chocolate addiction
Balance your blood sugar:
- Make sure you have protein and fat with every meal
- Include bitter foods such as dark green vegetables in your diet
- Supplements for reducing blood sugar spikes:
Get your dopamine kick from the following foods
Use other foods than chocolate to increase the levels of the ‘happy hormone’ dopamine in the brain:
- Dairy foods such as milk, cheese and yogurt
- Unprocessed meats such as beef, chicken and turkey
- Omega-3 rich fish such as salmon and mackerel
- Fruit and vegetables, in particular bananas
- Nuts such as almonds and walnuts
Though chocolate is typically divided into three categories: dark, milk and white, the latter two really should just be called “highly-processed interpretations of chocolate; they contain higher amounts of sugar, and it’s the processed sugars, salts and fats that make these varieties tasty and addictive, so when having chocolate reach for the darker variety and enjoy in moderation.
Here at The Gut Cø we have an afternoon spritz with REPAIR, sparkling water and lime (contains glutamine, zinc, betacarotene and vitamin C plus collagen (protein)) to prevent any panic runs to the shops or cafes nearby at 3pm.