The single biggest reason for high rates of obesity and lifestyle disease is addiction.
Yes, you heard that right. It’s not about over eating, too many calories, too much starch, sugar, fat etc. True those happen, but they are symptoms and not the cause.
The cause is addiction. The same as alcohol addiction or drug addiction.
In my opinion (and lots of experts now say this about sugar addiction) there is no real difference between a sugar addict or a carbohydrates addict or a “fast food addict” or a “sweets and mithai addict” or a “Cola addict”, and a heroin addict, an alcoholic, or a chain smoker. The same underlying issues apply.
It is fairly well understood now that sugar is about as addictive as cocaine. There are enough experts saying it now and so I can say this without the fear of a bunch of people getting offended and screaming bloody murder.
The same is true of carbohydrates as well. The reason is evolution.
Except for the last ten thousand years, for 99.5% of the time that Homo Erectus has existed (or 95% if you insist on Homo Sapiens), members of our species have been hunter gatherers.
Our bodies and brains have not changed in the last ten thousand years. They have evolved to support our hunter gatherer lifestyle, and continue to be the same bodies with the same biology and chemistry.
Food was not plentiful and could not be stored. Hunting and foraging were the only ways to get food. Eating three times a day was not a possibility.
You ate once a day if you were very lucky or else once in several days. And when you foraged and found fruit or roots or seeds to eat, you ate as much as you could, and then ate some more. The brain’s pleasure centres lit up like a Christmas tree, telling you to eat more and more. Your body converted the excess carbohydrate calories into fat to give your body the ability to survive for longer starvation periods.
Guess what? Your body does the same thing today. Starchy and sugary foods are pleasurable (Duh!) They are addictive. And now that you eat them three times a day and have been doing that for many years, if you stop cold turkey, you will get serious withdrawal symptoms. You will be sick for some time. It’s called the “keto flu”.
What next for you? We have AA for the alcoholic. We haven’t yet evolved to SA for sugars and CA for carbs. They will come and soon.
Here is what a CNN writer says about Ice Cream and Chocolate Chip Cookies: