One of the first tasks in order to identify your trigger foods is to identify which foods spark your need to eat and the powerful impulses to continue to eat.
The first is to do with sugar, sugar has the ability to trigger the brain just like alcohol or opioids. These trigger foods that contain sugar cause a spiralling effect once eaten, that says to your system ‘that felt so good! Eat more!’ by causing increasing hunger pangs as well as cravings.
The next is to do with flour. It is easy to understand that sugar is an issue for those who love their sweets, however people are less likely to be able to identify that flour can also be a spark. The reason being, that flour disguises itself as ‘healthy’ packaging. Made of flour is; whole wheat pasta, multi grain bread, sweets, rye, and oats, all of which are quickly metabolized. Flour too, is actually sugar to the system, and delivers a high load of sugar that creates the same spiral that says to the body ‘eat more and more and more.’, triggering hunger pangs and cravings.
Some claim that it is the gluten in the wheat that promotes this opioid like response in the brain. The truth is, that it is the flour that does so, and people with a sweet-tooth can move from overeating sugar to being just as addicted to breads, muffins, bagels, and pretzels. Highly fatty foods can also be an issue, because generally speaking, they are linked together with carbohydrates. These high fat foods containing the combination of both fat and carbohydrates can be a potentially difficult cocktail creating disturbances in the brain.
This is the same truth in regards to salt. Salt is also put together in combination with those highly processed oils, which also alters the same reward pathway as sugar and fat. It is good to be selective about which fat you eliminate from your diet; it is the unhealthy ones that need to be avoided.
Another item is that of caffein. Caffein is in foods such as; coffee, tea, pop, chocolate, and is in most weight loss products. Some, can manage drinking lots of coffee every day, way more than the recommended two cups per day, and the truth is, if too much caffein is consumed one can experience symptoms of withdrawal such as headaches, irritability, and fatigue. Caffein consumption can cause insomnia, anxiety, stomach irritability, gut pain, acid reflex, and heart palpitations, if not consumed in moderation.
It is also good to take artificial sweeteners in moderation as well. Some people think they can substitute refined white sugar for more natural brown cane sugars or honey. For people who are actually addicted to sugar they are under the mistaken belief that changing to sweetener intake will just naturally lower their weight and take away their cravings for sweets, but this is not true. There is a tendency to slowly increase artificial sweetener intake slowly over time, just the same as increasing other food choices as well.
It’s important to recognize that your trigger foods are the ones in which you find yourself overeating, with excessive food intake. Over indulging is seen as normal behaviour in mutual food sharing experiences. For example, all you can eat buffets, holiday meals, and events where cakes and other sugary foods are highlighted. Identifying binge eating can be difficult, but any time when there is excessive, anything, is indicative of a problem area of a trigger food, like for example, hoarding food, secretive binging, constant over indulging, excessive exercise, periods of restricting food intake, purging, or using laxatives, or just plain forgetting how much has been eaten during your day, are all indicative of your trigger foods.
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