This is a neurotransmitter (the messenger that carries signals between nerve cells) and triggers addictive and reward-based behaviors. This hormone is strongest when you go by a bakery or ice cream stand, you will have an overwhelming craving for that food, even after having a full meal. The dopamine will engage us to satisfy that craving.
If you feel anxiety increasing, the stress hormone will communicate to the dopamine system to want high-calorie foods. Also, if you try to cut calories too suddenly, your system will not adjust properly and will be stressed and hungry which can sabotage healthy eating.
The peptides is a group of hormones in your digestive system and plays a role in hunger. If you are not eating enough and low in calorie intake, your gut will again communicate to the dopamine system to be on a mission to find food.
Even when we don’t need those temptation foods, the sight and smell of those foods releases the hunger-producing hormone ghrelin and stimulates the addictive chemicals in the brain to be ready to eat even when you are not hungry.
This is an appetite suppressing hormone and lets you know when you are full, and in turn, there is a lesser connection to trigger the dopamine system. The flip side of this “Leptin coin” are people with metabolic syndrome which this leptin signal doesn’t work as well and can cause weight gain to then lead to obesity, type 2 diabetes, or cardiac disease.
This gives you pleasure from consuming high-calorie foods, however, the more you eat these foods, the pleasure connection starts diminishing. In turn, you try to eat more and more to get the same reward you initially did.
How do we diminish the “Pure Bliss Sensation”?
There is evidence that dietary fiber can stop the craving triggers of eating high sugar, fat, and salty foods. Soluble fiber (dissolves in water and slows down the passage of food) and insoluble fiber (does not dissolves in water and is called the “roughage” for smooth bowel motility) both play an important role in diminishing cravings and preventing the risk of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.
How much fiber should we eat?
About 20-35 grams of total fiber a day, with 10-15 grams coming from Soluble fiber. Choose 6 ounces of whole grains, 2 ½ cups of vegetable, 2 cups of fruit per day based on 2000 calorie/day pattern but make sure enough water is consumed (at least 8, 8oz glasses of water a day)
Note also Psyllium, which is a fiber laxative and cereal additive, has both soluble and insoluble properties.
Farro is a whole grain that is popular in Italy. Fiber-up with this grain in salads. This light Farro salad is an easy to make “ahead dish” to have for lunch at work for energy or for a quiet Sunday afternoon. All the dietary fiber veggies bursting with flavors, vitamins and minerals for our healthy survival day. You can make it 50/50 for the perfect balance of Farro and Veggies. It all depends on how grainy or veggie heavy you want it!3
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Sea salt to taste, very minimal
1 teaspoon pink peppercorns (fruity & peppery flavor)
3 scallions, white parts only cut into a fine dice
6 large radishes, cut into a fine dice, about ½ cup
1 cup quartered cherry or grape tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 cup farro, soaked overnight in 3 cups of water and drained
1.Place lemon juice and a pinch of sea salt into a large bowl. Slowly beat in the olive oil until well combined. Stir in the pink peppercorns and the scallions.
2.Take the diced celery and radishes and mix them into the dressing. Add a hand full of the corn kernels, 1 cup of cherry tomatoes and 2 tablespoons of the parsley. Stir to mix. The vegetables should be well coated in oil and herbs. Let sit in a cool place for 10 minutes for the flavors to develop.
3.Take the drained farro and gradually add it into the vegetables ¼ cup at a time until you have the balance of grain and vegetables to your taste. Let the salad sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving.
Prep time: 55 minutes
(1) American Diabetes Association
* Summery Farro Salad recipe reprinted with permission from Cook for Your Life, Inc. www.cookforyourlife.org
50 Jeanne Drive
Newburgh, NY 12550