Turning 40 recently has me thinking more about the status of my health. Also where I want it to be at this stage of my life. My interest in the brain and how the mind works has led me to understand my addiction to ice cream. I wanted to know is my brain health and physical health related, the reason why I craved ice cream. The added sugar in ice cream and any other foods has the same addictive effects on the brain as cocaine. Surprised? I am too! But what does that have to do with it and how exactly are brain health and belly fat related?
Does Brain Health affect your Physical Health?
Ice Cream has always been my go-to comfort food for any mood as a child and still is today. Dreaming of growing up and having all the ice cream I wanted not knowing the effects it would have on my brain health and body. Eating so much added sugar over the years affected my brain health by triggering sweet cravings, aka dopamine. Too much sugar also numbed my bodies natural appetite suppressant. Although I love Ice cream, I love my life and my family more so I had to make a change.
I say this because I’m older and realize today diseases and other health risks are harder to get well from. Some people usually relate that eating too many sweets equals being overweight. But slimmer people can be at risk for health problems due to an overconsumption of added sugar as well. According to scientists, risks of eating added sugar are heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and cancer. For me, it is belly fat and an extreme high risk for Type 2 diabetes.
Once you become addicted to sugar and continue to over-consume, the liver can become damaged. During my health exams the Doctor explained, that a damaged liver is called fatty liver disease. This can be reversed with lifestyle changes says, Annie Kay, (What Is Fatty Liver Disease?). Too much added sugar causes the liver to break down the excess into fat. The fat, “wait for it,” is deposited in the bloodstream around our organs and you guessed it, the midsection! Therefore the relation between brain health and belly fat is the addiction to added sugar.
Healthy Food Choices
The good news is, the effects of consuming too much added sugar can be reversed. You can reverse it by replacing foods with added sugar with foods that have natural sugars. Foods that contain natural sugars can satisfy that sweet craving and deliver energy and nutrients to your brain. Wild blueberries are one of my new favorite brain foods that I have added to my diet. Wild blueberries enhance the brain health and physical health as well as performance and I’m all for it.
Once I made small changes to satisfy my ice cream cravings I felt so much better. I no longer have headaches as I used to and my A1C is also down from 6.3 to 5.2. Frozen smoothies are my favorite way to calm the crave. I blend frozen blueberries with pineapple juice and agave nectar for a sweet treat or two. You can find more about wild blueberries and brain health here.
It’s said that foods that resemble the shape of the brain have lots of benefits. One food that is brain-shaped is the walnut. Walnuts contain high levels of Omega 3, a building block of the brain, that lifts your mood. These foods not only help with brain health, but they also help the body. These foods can also lower the risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes, https://brainmd.com/blog/go-walnuts-brains-health/.
Diet Doesn’t Always Equal Weight Loss
Speaking of diet, it’s good to know the word “diet” doesn’t always mean weight loss. Diet also means what we consume in our bodies and our minds. What we consume in our body not only impacts the body but the mind as well.
For more articles on maintaining your health visit Bonus Benefits of a Low-Carb Diet NOT Related to Weight Loss