Your Four Horsemen of Addiction - and Losing WeightFebruary 04, 2019
References: Bright Line Eating, NIH, CMAJ,
Susan Peirce Thompson's approach to dieting is based on one clear simple idea. Our brains are broken by the enormous changes in our culture, our food environment, our means of eating. And the nugget of insight comes down to the insight of how food affects us in ways we couldn't possibly imagine until you approach eating from a neuroscience point of view.
Take folks into a PET scanner and scan their brains while they are using known addicting drugs like heroin and cocaine. You can see their brains light up, particularly in the nucleus accumbens. This is the part of your brain that puts out the neurotransmitter dopamine in response to basic life pleasures like eating, sex......all those good things that sustain life itself. Addicting substances work by making you put out way too much dopamine, and thereafter becoming depleted of dopamine. Addicts will tell you that they never get a high like the first one, and are constantly chasing that first hit. In fact, they become so dopamine-depleted that they seek the drug just to get back to feeling normal, much less high. The process of rehab is the time it takes for your brain to regain its normal levels of dopamine, and for months the nucleus accumbens is so depleted that the person feels devastating low, the dark valley of addiction.
Guess what happens to your nucleus accumbens when you consume sugar! Yup, it lights up and puts out dopamine. Too much dopamine. Your nucleus accumbens down-regulates in response. It takes more sugar to get the same high. Guess what happens when you get rats addicted to cocaine, and then offer them cocaine versus sugar. You got it. They choose the sugar. Now let's extend that to white flour. Eat a flour-based food and see what happens to the nucleus accumbens. Again, it lights up just like heroin. No kidding. It is addicting and dopamine depleting. You know that to be true. Sit down at the restaurant and have just one piece of warm, moist, freshly baked bread. Just try.
So compare sugar, white flour, cocaine, and heroin. All four come in natural plants that do not cause addiction when eaten in their raw form. But purify them and turn them into a powder form that is different from anything known in nature, and results in body absorption different than anything humans have been exposed to up until the advent of agriculture. A functional PET scan of humans' brains proves the hypothesis. Presto. Identical. Crack! Flour! Sugar! Heroin! We put you in prison for crack. We encourage you to eat sugar. Wow, sugar is as addicting as cocaine? Yup. You can measure addiction strength in rats by the level of electric shock they are willing to endure to get to their addicting substance. Guess what! Sugar BEATS cocaine!
Why do we gain weight and get fat? As silly as it sounds it is because our brains get "broken" by their addiction to food, particularly sugar and flour. You can't resist. This is why 80% of American prepared food has extra sugar added to get you to eat more and consume more. At your peril.
Guess what artificial sweeteners do. You got it. Same process. They induce the secretion of insulin and a depletion of dopamine. Plenty of research to show that folks who use artificial sweeteners also gain weight over using plain sugar, as evil as sugar is.
www.What Will Work for me. The core idea for me to take away here is that sugar and white flour are drugs with dopamine-depleting, addicting qualities to them. Susan Peirce Thompson's first two BRIGHT LINES are the absolute avoidance of sugar and flour, including sweeteners. Try it for two weeks. She dares you on her website. Join me. I'm starting a trial on myself. Herbal tea only with no sweetener.
- What damage does heroin do to your nucleus accumbens? Answer: it depletes your natural pleasure neurotransmitter, dopamine. It makes a high at
first,but then gets less and less.
- What "foods" do the same thing to human brains? Answer: sugar and any sort of flour that takes carbohydrates and pulverizes them into talcum powder, increasing the speed at which they are digested and the rate at which blood glucose rises, resulting in insulin secretion.
- Cocaine-addicted rats offered cocaine or sugar choose what? Answer: sugar
- What percent of American prepared foods have sugar added? Answer: 80%
- If sugar and white flour damage your brain, what is the logical step you should take to avoid them. Answer: Take decision-making and random exposure away and make a "bright line" of avoidance. Absolute, rigid avoidance. Read Susan Thompson's book.