The “high” from eating certain carbohydrate-rich foods may lead to compulsive overeating comparable to alcohol binges and smoking. This food habit, in turn, creates weight gain that can exacerbate the symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS).
A desire for a particular food can become so overwhelming that it no longer seems to be a simple choice between eating and not eating. Other signs of carb addiction are using food to feel better and eating regularly when you’re not hungry.
High glycemic index (GI) foods like sugary treats, white bread and potatoes tend to be more addictive than low GI offerings like legumes, green vegetables and some whole grains. When was the last time, for instance, that you heard of someone craving a Caesar salad?
There are striking similarities between food addiction and tobacco and alcohol addiction. All are often characterized by consuming increasing amounts over time, having difficulty cutting back and withdrawal symptoms.
Research shows that addictive drugs like alcohol and nicotine, as well as certain foods, can affect neurotransmitters – the brain chemicals that regulate mood. Chief among these neurotransmitters is dopamine, which can create the “high” associated with alcohol, smoking, drug use, sex and even shopping.
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