Mind Power Issue #44

5 Steps to Rewire Your Brain for Weight Loss


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Issue #44 – Monday, Jan. 16, 2017

Today’s Mind Power is sure to blow you away.

It is written by someone who is not only becoming a good personal friend, but is a world renowned expert in the field of food addiction. And what she graciously shares with us today will shock you.

She dispels all the multi - decade myths about weight loss and sets you on a healthy path for weight loss, one you are surely able to find successful.



5 Steps to Rewire Your Brain for
Weight Loss
By
Dr. Susan Pierce Thompson


For decades the weight loss industry has been telling people that success is in the wrong place: that it’s on the other side of an expensive gym membership, or food replacement system.

It’s not.

The seat of our body’s weight loss function is not in the thighs or the fat cells, but in the brain. That’s right: the human brain is causing 99% of people trying to lose weight to fail.

. How? As a brain and cognitive scientist I can tell you the research proves that the foods we consume today, and the way we consume them, quickly trigger changes in the brain that ultimately block weight loss by creating insatiable hunger and overpowering cravings.

The main culprits are flour and sugar, which are in nearly everything we eat. They hijack our hormones and neurotransmitters and actually change our neural pathways and reward systems, rewiring them to ensure that we will continue eating more and more of both. In other words, they are highly addictive. As a former drug addict, I don’t use this term lightly.

But as with other addictions, we can reclaim our brain to work for us, not against us, and, ultimately, achieve permanent weight loss. I did it myself thirteen years ago and have helped thousands of others do the same. Here are 5 simple steps:

Eliminate sugar and flour

Flour and sugar are as addictive in your brain as cocaine and other powdered drugs. In the quantities we consume, they over-stimulate the brain’s nucleus accumbens -- its seat of pleasure, reward and motivation. To protect itself, the nucleus accumbens down-regulates by turning off some pleasure receptors so it won’t be bombarded as hard the next time. Thus, you need increasingly large doses to experience the same level of pleasure. That’s addiction. Flour and sugar also cause insulin levels to rise. Which not only puts you at risk for Type II Diabetes, but elevated insulin in the bloodstream blocks the brain from recognizing the hormone leptin, which signals that we’re full. Without leptin able to do its job you can go from dinner to the couch with a bag of chips, followed by a carton of ice cream, and still go to bed feeling unsatisfied.

Healing begins when sugar and flour are taken out of the equation. Not only does excess weight come off, but the insatiable hunger ends.

Eat regular meals

A steady schedule of three meals a day at regular mealtimes trains the brain to eat the right things at the right times and to pass up the wrong things in between. This works because sticking to a schedule allows you to not need to rely on willpower. When regular meals become part of the scaffolding of your life, it takes the burden off willing yourself to eat more or less. When you set up a schedule of eating three meals a day at regular mealtimes—breakfast at breakfast time, lunch at lunchtime, and dinner at dinnertime—not only does eating the right things become automatic, but passing up the wrong things in between also becomes automatic. Eating meals on a regular schedule also dramatically increases the fasting window—the number of hours that you go without ingesting any food (a 13-hour fasting window is accomplished if you finish dinner by 6 PM and eat breakfast at 7 AM the next morning). Longer fasting windows equate to increased fat loss, improved energy levels, and better sleep.

Eat the right quantities

Most adults no longer receive reliable signals from their brains to stop eating when they’ve had enough, causing for them to overeat. Eating right-sized portions will revive those signals over time and help the pounds melt off. There’s also a flip side: if you haven’t been eating three regular meals with no grazing between, you may not be eating enough at meals. Once you start confining yourself to three meals a day, don’t forget that you need to eat an amount that fills you. The goal for eating should be to eat three beautiful, abundant, delicious meals a day—with absolutely nothing in between.

Understand how willpower works

We often think of willpower as an aspect of our moral character, or as a tool that gets more effective with increased commitment. However, studies have proven that willpower is simply a finite cognitive resource that most of us have about fifteen minutes of at a time, and it’s the same mechanism also in charge of emotional regulation, or keeping your patience. If working or parenting or driving in traffic saps your patience, you are going to fall into the Willpower Gap. So you cannot rely on willpower alone to change your eating habits!

Be consistent

Like a drug rehab program, make these “Bright Lines” non-negotiable. Doing so will take the burden off willpower, make good choices automatic and remove the ambiguity that leads to “just one more little bite.” As an added bonus, eating meals at consistent times improves insulin sensitivity, lowers cholesterol, and supports fat loss. As for the gym, once my clients have reached their goal weight and maintained it for a few months, I let them gradually add in physical activity that fills them with joy. Until then they have to rest while the weight pours off and their brains and bodies heal. I have one goal as a weight-loss coach: I don’t ever want to treat anyone twice. Which is why I rely on brain science. I want this year to be the last year you resolve to lose weight.


About the Author

Dr. Susan Peirce Thompson

Susan Peirce Thompson, Ph.D. is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the University of Rochester and an expert in the psychology of eating. She is President of the Institute for Sustainable Weight Loss and CEO of

Bright Line Eating Solutions

, a company dedicated to sharing the psychology and neuroscience of sustainable weight loss and helping people live Happy, Thin, and Free.

Check it Out!

Cocaine or Oreos: Which is more addictive?

This really blew me away:

Back in 2013, Forbes revealed scientific research that showed Oreos were more addictive…

...than cocaine or heroin.

In fact, it may be easier to kick a cocaine addiction than to let go of those double-stuffed sugar-bombs.

But it doesn’t stop there…

Research shows that refined foods have powerful addictive properties that some people just can’t seem to resist.

My friend Dr. Susan Peirce Thompson has developed a Susceptibility Quiz to help you find out how likely you are to be addicted to junk food and what you can do about it.

Not only that, she has developed the most effective method of dealing with this problem I’ve ever seen (and as you may know, this is a health area I watch very closely).

After the quiz, Susan will give you your score, and a customized Food Freedom video to help you understand what it means for your life.

I met Susan because someone else I respect (Dr. Pedram Shojai) sent me a video of her.

I was immediately impressed with how knowledgeable she is, and the fact that – in a health information world awash in Junk Science – she is…

...strictly into the real science (ie, what really works).

Trust me, junk science will not help you lose weight or be healthier.

Go take the quiz!

.

Wise Words


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5 Steps to Rewire Your Brain for Weight Loss

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