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Chocolate can be great tasting a treat or the bane of our existence. So why do we actually crave chocolate and even more to the point why do we crave bad food? Well scientists are finding that it’s all in our brain that causes us to crave chocolate when we aren’t even hungry.

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Grehlin is the hunger hormone that is the reason for this. Scientists have done studies on lab mice showing that chronic stress will raise grehlin levels and the mice would then eat more high fat food than the non stressed mice.

The other cause of chocolate craving is that sugar pumps up our appetite and then hits the same neurotransmitters that activate the brain’s pleasure state which MRI’s and studies have shown that drugs (morphine, heroin, cocaine) and alcohol stimulate.

Then to make things worst fructose (the main type of sugar) doesn’t stimulate the release of the normal appetite hormones (insulin, leptin or cholecystokinin) which tell us that we are full. So sugar/fructose is invisible to these hormones and you won’t get that full feeling and unfortunately is converted straight into fatty acids then to body fat.

On a side note artificial sweeteners are just as bad or even worse than table sugar. They actually stimulate the stomach for the anticipation of calories.

 

Wow so with all these things happening in our system then how can we get it under control?

–          we can enjoy chocolate in small amounts and limit the amount you buy (no king size)

–          Another good way is to look at going dark which is a better brand of chocolate for health and well being.

–          Consciously stop and be positive and tell yourself that you don’t need to eat that.

–          If cravings start go for a walk or do some form of exercise.

–          One way to lower grehlin levels is to eat fruit and vegetables that are high in fibre and water content

–          Eat more protein during the day and try to eat more regularly during the day rather than big meals.

 

So in brief there are some facts on why you might crave chocolate and over eat. There is nothing wrong with enjoying a little bit of chocolate but if you are struggling with the chocolate habit try some ways to reduce the amount you are having and start cutting it down for more weight loss!