The way forward for obesity advocacy lies not in describing the problem, but understanding the motivational drive for overeating in the first place. Our over consumption of food is likely borne out of cognitive necessity rather than nutritional need. The cognitive necessity is borne out of an exponential growth of the demand on our attention resources. In addition to some really interesting interactions between three key organs: the brain, the gut, and fat (yes, it is an organ), here I have provided the first few pitch sentences for a book I’d like a few people to read, eventually.
Thank you for your time here (!)
Cortical Currency (working title)
All decent science stories start with a hook. Here is my attempt: the fuel your brain requires is glucose, and the more taxed your brain is, the more ‘fuel’ it will need to function. If your current life circumstance is characterized by a constant demand on your attention resources, you may be using glucose to cope, and getting fat as an unintended consequence.
The fat accumulation, obviously, wasn’t supposed to happen! It’s not an emotional issue. There is no secret eating. The overconsumption may have nothing to do with emotional binges. This is the result of the calories (energy) ingested for providing the brain the fuel it needs. An unforeseen consequence of our limitless access to both glucose and devices that demand our attention (like this blog post, or your smart phone) has been the exponential rise in the size of our fat organ. That’s right: fat is an organ, too. So in addition to the brain’s need for glucose, once a person accumulates a disproportionate amount of fat, they have even more demands for fuel. Thanks to leptin, a hormone secreted by fat, we now have increased physiological responsibilities to eat more (even if we need to ‘lose weight), in addition to the cognitive ones needed to cope with living in Y2K.
What can we do when two important organs get out of shape? Those being the brain and fat. If dietary restrictions place more cognitive demands, and if exercise ‘doesn’t work’, what options do we have left?
… Then I describe ways of escapism, a key component I believe in attaining a healthy body weight and happiness in general. Nota Bene: the methods of escapism I will highlight do not involve illicit substance or shopping. I also do describe the neurocognitive, neurogenerating benefit of exercise. I don’t think exercise is the best way to lose fat. I do think it’s a great way to cheer up your brain.
Interested? Let me know your thoughts, and I sincerely appreciate your views.