- This topic has 11 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 1 year ago by Gillian.
June 19, 2020 at 6:09 pm #8127Anne MarieParticipant
Hi Gillian and all! I have been faithfully listening to and journaling with all the lessons, plus I’ve read Eating Less and Ditching Diets. I can slowly see changes happening, especially with my all-afternoon grazing between lunch and supper. This work feels brilliant, just brilliant to me and I am grateful to have found Gillian and everyone here.
I am curious about my own prefrontal cortex. How is it that when it comes to my business, my prefrontal cortex seems in perfect harmony with me? I mean, I have no trouble at all thinking logically about the business that I own, how to work with workshop participants, what new classes to create, how to market my new book…etc. When I think about and process anything to do with my business, I am easily able to apply logic as well as look at outcomes of my behavior.
BUT… how is it that when it comes to FOOD, my prefrontal cortex seems to be underdeveloped? For many years I have been unable to focus on or even remember to think about possible outcomes of my overeating, yet I CAN and do do that with other things in my life, like my business.
Just curious… I am looking forward to Gillian’s answer, or if anyone else can shed light on this, that would be helpful too.
Anne Marie in MA
June 19, 2020 at 6:35 pm #8130Julie MannParticipant
Such a great question, I’ve often thought the same, how in other areas of my life I have it all together, or at least sort of, and with food my PFC goes off line so easily and frequently.
June 19, 2020 at 6:51 pm #8131GillianModerator
Anne Marie, it’s not that your prefrontal cortex is underdeveloped, it’s that the food cue activates the limbic system, and in doing so deactivates the pfc. Remember that only one or other of these areas in the brain is activated at any one time.
The same thing happens no matter what you’re addicted to: cocaine, alcohol, nicotine, sex, gambling…
The aim is to become aware of this happening at the time and then take steps to cope.
June 19, 2020 at 7:05 pm #8132Anne MarieParticipant
Oh, right! That makes perfect sense, Gillian. Thank you. I think I “get” it now.
And I want to add that I’ve been reading all of the forums and learning SO much here. I really am grateful for you deep and kind attention to all of our questions. It makes the learning and action-taking so much easier.
June 19, 2020 at 7:11 pm #8134GillianModerator
Thank you, Anne Marie. I do enjoy it!
June 19, 2020 at 7:15 pm #8135Julie MannParticipant
Limbic activation! That’s why in other areas I don’t experience issues, so clear. Thank you.
June 20, 2020 at 12:01 am #8141guadalupeParticipant
Hi everyone. I kept thinking about in which other area I behave as I do with food or in which area Im the contrary…
It could be that just as I respond to food, I respond the same way to other issues such as money? That having a bad relationship with food can be related also to have a bad relationship with money and shopping?
In my case, I´ve realized that when I’m anxious, I don’t really know if it’s anxiety or I’m just not well but I don’t know exactly what it is. Ive realized that in that situation besides binging, I eat my nails a lot . And I spent more money and I dont care about it. It is like thinking that I should save, or look more at what I spend, and I end up spending more. As with the roller coaster of diets… It’s thinking that I want to weightloss or stop eating like this, so I shouldn’t eat this or that, and I end up eating even more. Does this have any relation in the brain?
June 20, 2020 at 1:09 am #8142Julie MannParticipant
Guadalupe I agree that spending and eating behaviors seem linked…
June 20, 2020 at 9:46 pm #8167Julia RParticipant
I don’t know if this provides more clarity to this question: During a one on one session with Gillian, she made reference that I could take off my glasses. The out come would mean I would not be able to see her as well, have difficulty with my note taking. But it was my choice. I asked WHY do we have all these issues with food. Why can’t we handle food the same way we handle taking off or putting on our glasses (or one could apply other areas of our life)? She shared in her kind and informative way: that is because food (especially food with sugar, fat and salt) has an addictive quality. Not at like taking off one’s glasses (unless there is an OCD). We can thank the food industry that works very hard with making sure food, is in fact, addictive. Hope someone gets value from this post.
June 21, 2020 at 2:39 am #8172Julie MannParticipant
That’s very helpful Julia. Thank you for sharing.
June 22, 2020 at 9:12 pm #8213Anne MarieParticipant
Guadalupe, thank you for bringing this up… I too can relate to chewing on my nails and overspending when I am feeling anxious, along with the food.. and that “I don’t care” attitude. I would love to hear what Gillian has to say about the limbic system in relation to money and overspending as you brought it up in the statement above.
I am so happy to be here with all of you!
Anne Marie in MA
June 23, 2020 at 11:20 am #8217GillianModerator
What I have to say is that any behaviour that generates a biochemical reward in the limbic brain can potentially become addictive. But humans and human brains are extraordinarily complex, so what one person finds rewarding isn’t necessarily so for everyone.
Spending, earning and/or winning money can all be rewarding activities for some, and thus can become addictive. And keep in mind that addiction is a matter of degree and not as black-and-white and all-or-none as we are often lead to believe.
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