You know thatÂ peaceful and soothing feeling you get after eating fatty foods, there is good news. It’s a natural!! It’s not your willpower letting you down. Â But exactly why does eating food feel so soothing sometimes? Like when you are stressed out, why does a dose of chocolate or a bowl of ice cream make everything all good!!Â Â The answer may surprise you.
Dr Lukas Van Oudenhove works at the University of Leuven, in Belgium. He led a team of scientists in a research project to see what the emotional reactions that humans have to food. 12 healthy volunteers had their brain waves monitored as they were shown both sad and neutral images, and as they listened to neutral and sad music.
Those test subjects then were given either fatty acids or saline. The volunteers were not told which of these 2 chemicals they were receiving. When showed sad images or played emotionally dreary music, those who consumed fatty acids were shown to be 50% happier and upbeat than those who received saline.
And those findings mirror the evidence found in countless studies of the relationship between food and mood. There is a definite link. Eating is usually accompanied by some type of aroma.Â [Tweet “The smell of green apples can actually help alleviate headaches, because it works on your brain’s pleasure and pain receptors.”]
[Tweet “Coconut actually calms down your “fight or flight” response, and lowers your heart rate.”]Â This soothing feeling is also delivered by peppermint, which can be added to your foods to help limit your feelings of hunger as well.
Candy bars and other sweets are good for you, [Tweet “naturally unprocessed dark chocolate reduces your levels of cortisol. “]That is the hormone most directly linked with causing stress, so you feel less anxious and more at ease with just a small bite of chocolate.
Unfortunately the way your brain responds to fatty foods, which we mentioned earlier, is also triggered when you eat an abundance of carbohydrates or starches. Your system slows down, you feel relaxed and content, and you may even want to take a nap.
[Tweet “There are foods which make you feel calm and peaceful without any negative consequences, like green apples and coconut. “] Just be careful to limit the amount of fats, starches and carbohydrates you get in your diet, because these “feel good” foods can lead to obesity, heart problems and other health risks.
Wanna learn how to listen to your body and beat emotional eating?? Click here for your Emotional Eating Action Guide.