Train your Brain to Crave that Kale

Woman choosing the healthy food by following this quick method.Let's face it. When you've got a craving, it's probably for something along the lines of your grandma's triple-layer chocolate cake or that decadent, heavy-cream pasta Alfredo at your favorite little Italian joint. Oh if only carrots and cabbage and kale tasted half as dreamy, you'd have the body of a super model in no time!


Ok, so maybe the super model body is a bit out of reasonable reach. But craving carrots or cabbage or kale or any other healthy food may be well within your reach, according to results of a new study by the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging. Researchers conducting the study took a good look at the brain activity of overweight participants, some of whom underwent a diet program that incorporated behavioral intervention.


Participants underwent MRI brain scans before starting their diets and again at the six-month mark. The results? Activity in the area of the brain's reward center, which floods your gray matter with happiness-inducing dopamine, showed a positive spike when participants were shown photos of low-calorie foods, and took a dive when shown images of higher-calorie, less healthy foods.


We don't start out in life loving French fries and hating, for example, whole wheat pasta," said study co-author Susan B. Roberts, Ph.D. "This conditioning happens over time in response to eating – repeatedly - what is out there in the toxic food environment."


To help retrain your brain - and your taste buds - we suggest a fake-it-'til-you-make-it approach. Start with just a bite or two of a healthy food that doesn't currently give you that dopamine-infused euphoria, then add another bite or two each day. Before you know it, you'll find yourself with a hankering for the healthy stuff. Not convinced? Metabolic Research Center can help. Call 800-501-8090 or visit us online to find the location nearest you.


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