The End of Overeating
Betty Ann Bowser of the News hour at PBS talks to author Dr. David Kessler about what is behind people's cravings, the subject of his new book, "The End of Overeating."
Also, from the www.huffingtonpost.com
"Last week, Dr. David Kessler, former commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration under presidents George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton, published The End of Overeating. During a seven-year investigation, Dr. Kessler met with scientists, physicians, and food industry insiders to learn why humans cannot resist food. For many of us—myself included—the Pringles slogan, "Once you pop, you can't stop," is true of a variety of foods, from M&M's and pretzels, to nachos and ice cream. Regardless of how hungry we are, the smell of freshly baked bagels or the sight of Girl Scout Cookies, starts a feeding frenzy that ends only when the plate or bag is empty".
Heard that on NPR last month. Couldn't turn it off. I think this is the podcast link.
Dr. David Kessler, former head of the FDA, explains that the food offered by corporations is produced to provide overwhelming cravings. Once these cravings are established they become addictive.
"In The End of Overeating, Dr. Kessler explains how humans, much like Pavlov's dogs, become hardwired to anticipate foods with fat, sugar, and salt. The food industry has learned what humans want, and is only too happy to give us what we crave. We quickly become trapped in a vicious cycle of dopamine-fueled urges when we want food, and opioid releases when we eat it. If dopamine and opioid sound familiar, it's because they play a major role in alcohol and drug addiction. Dr. Kessler draws a direct connection between food's power over people, and the pull of alcohol and drugs. It truly isn't a stretch to say, "I'm addicted to chocolate.""
I bought this for my Kindle a couple of weeks ago. It's very interesting. Heavy on research, anecdotes, and analysis. The actual practical advise is good, but not the main focus of the book. He seems to advocate the cognitive approach to overeating.
Understand what the messages are. Understand how you will react to those messages and triggers. Realize you have control over your own thoughts. "Rehab" your behaviors so you can develop new "automatic" responses to those triggers etc.
I recommend it.
I've lost a hundred pounds and I really have to say that the only person responsible for my weight was me. Not the engineers at Pringles. Me.
Originally Posted by TrekJapan
I listened to the NPR interview, and it ended in a quote that addresses this - it goes like "It doesn't mean we shouldn't take responsibility for our actions, but you cannot take responsibility until you are educated on just what you are eating"
I don't know about you, but when I have gained weight in my past it was partly due to ignorance on just what I was eating. Now, when I regained weight...that's a different story.
One of the reasons I really liked the Weight Watcher's points program is due to the education factor inherent in the program.
Part of the problem is that healthy options are less available and less profitable than foods with excess fat, sugar & salt.
My wife and I prepare healthy meals at home. However, I travel on business more than 50% of the time and eating carefully is very difficult due to a lack of healthy food options.
I was able to lose weight by seeking out certain food chains like Panera. Cycling allows me to burn off Calories since eating properly is not as easy to do.
This is part of the problem, some foods that look healthy, really are not.
Originally Posted by Barrettscv
A television program here in Canada looked at restaurant meals, and rated them as equivalent to a Big Mac, when you get a Salad that is equal to 2˝ Big Macs then there is a problem, and the problem is usually the dressings and sauces.
The key with restaurant meals, always ask for sauces and dressings on the side. Dip your fork into the little bowl of dressing, pick up a fork of salad then eat that, rather then putting the dressing on top. Often for restaurants the dressing comes in a 5L or 10L (probably 5qt or 10qt in the US) jug rather then a bottle, with a pump top on it, and they put 4 or 5 pumps on it, and that would be half a regular bottle of dressing, The small bowls for those who want dressing on the side, are maybe one pump. You get a taste of the dressing without needing to eat more then is healthy.
Another thing with restaurants, you can save a lot by using that old skinny whinny trick, the doggy bag. If you don't feel like eating everything, ask for a room with a small refrigerator, take your left overs back to your room, and have it as the next days lunch instead of the "liquid lunch" everyone else does. Avoid alcohol, most alcoholic drinks are like sodas, they are mostly sugar and water with some alcohol added. Not saying you need to be a tea totaller, but if you must have alcohol, it's amazing how long you can make one drink last. Especially if you also ask for water with your meal.
I find that minimizing alcohol use in the U.S. is easy. I'll nurse one red wine and always feel like I'm part of the group.
Originally Posted by Wogsterca
Traveling in China is murder, These guys will toast a guest individually, so I drink without a break at every dinner. Plus, they serve the equivalent of white lightning!
In the US like in Canada, there is a growing tolerance to accepting that some people do not drink alcohol for religious reasons, for example Islam and some Christian segments, discourage the use of alcohol.
Originally Posted by Barrettscv
You can always claim that your not drinking due to medical reasons ( you don't want to end up looking like the Michelin Man, is a medical reason :D ). You can always claim to be on a health regimen or cleansing regimen that requires you to avoid alcohol. Claim it on religious grounds, that usually works very well, most people don't want to hear about religion. Volunteer to be the designated driver.
Lots of ways to get out of drinking alcohol, if you want to, it's mostly empty calories with a buzz anyway.
I agree that education is vital. I've never understood why they don't REALLY take the time to teach our kids nutrition in schools. I know they touch on it but it isn't enough.
Originally Posted by Brando_T.
Still, I've got to say that when I was 300 lbs. or so and I'd demolish a huge meal or a whole bag of chips I always knew it was bad for me and was wrong. I harbored great guilt over the years. I knew exactly what I was doing. I knew. The best part of being where I am now is all that guilt is gone. I don't feel guilty after I eat anymore.
When I started taking responsibility for my food intake by counting calories and exercising is when the weight started falling off. And to my amazement it comes off quicker than it goes on it seems.
I read a book about learning to listen to your body. It was basically:
- eat what you want, but only eat when you're hungry;
- eat as much as you like but stop when you think you are full (you can always eat more later if you're hungry again in an hour);
- eat slowly and enjoy everything you eat.
The idea was that it's not the food, it's the amount you eat that's the problem. Sounds similar to this book.