I am doing exciting work with hunger. Figuring out why we can’t just eat less to lose weight. I’m working with surprising mechanical issues in our brains.
I believe natural hunger gets broken in several complex ways: damage to the autonomic nervous system (low brain oxygen causes cravings for salt and sugar), intestinal bacterial imbalances (low blood pressure to the brain and impaired hormone that regulates satiety), inflammatory damage to the hypothalamus (due to excessive nutrients) and neurological metabolic inflammation.
None of those reasons is related to a lack of willpower.
In particular, many of us have silent inflammatory damage to our hypothalamus. The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that controls temperature, hunger thirst, fatigue, and sleep. When working correctly, those things are in balance.
When working incorrectly it interferes with the autonomic nervous system, which is the information highway the brain uses to controls your blood pressure, heart, hormones, digestion, and immune system. When that part of the nervous system is injured you feel “off”, sick, tired, and very hungry. It is a mechanical brain issue that can be repaired.
The first step is to test your autonomic nervous system. That test result tells me whether short-term medication to allow the brain to repair itself is necessary. The second step is to determine if an intestinal bacterial overgrowth is contributing to the imbalance. Both of those things must be looked in order to repair broken hunger.
The third step is to give the brain the food that it actually needs. This is often done by consistent high doses of omega-3 fatty acid (fish oil) and by eliminating omega-6 fatty acids. Food labels don’t say “omega 6” they are commonly listed as soybean, corn, sunflower or safflower oils. Soybean, corn, sunflower or safflower oils are present in most processed food.
Start reading the labels on your breads, cereals, salad dressings, and favorite snack items. If you have to open a box or unwrap something to eat it, it might contain omega-6. Once you eliminate the omega-6s it will be easier to eat less than 100 grams of carbohydrates per day, which is the fourth step.
And finally, we get to the Skinny Jeans olive oil part. Extra virgin olive oil contains omega-9 fatty acids, which can repair cellular damage to the hypothalamus and/or block new damage from omega-6. Think Mediterranean Diet: fish oil and olive oil.
Some people need to consume a few tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil per day. For those people, it quiets abnormal hunger once the nervous system is fixed. It means they can dig out those old jeans they kept in the back of the closet because they can fit in them again.
Call my office at 623-208-4226 and make an appointment if your hunger is broken and you are ready to test your autonomic nervous system.
© 2014. Dr. Patrick M. Nemechek and Jean R. Nemechek. All Rights Reserved.