Hyper palatable or hyper rewarding foods…ever heard of them?
These gems play tricks on the brain and cause you to overeat without even thinking twice. Food chemists have designed these processed chemical shit storms with precise ratios of sugar, salt and fat in order to bypass the hunger centers in the brain and make them extremely easy to over consume!
Yeah it’s pretty messed up and should probably be illegal however it’s an amazing marketing strategy and ridiculously smart. How do I get people to buy more of my product and make more $$…engineer it so they can eat obscene amounts of the stuff!
What are some examples of these foods?
Highly processed and refined ‘junk’ foods are hyper palatable and hit the reward centers in the brain hard! Stuff like donuts, cookies, candies, chocolates and the list goes on…basically things that come in a box or package and don't spoil for long periods of time.
Ever notice you can crush an entire bag of chips in one sitting or dummy a box of oreos without making a dent in your appetite? Food chemistry is why!
Thanksgiving is another example of the hyper palatable/food reward dealio. You just had a massive meal, you’re stuffed and can’t even think about cramming anything else in your stomach until the pie comes out. That hunk of pastry laden goodness overrides your satiety signals and you throw a piece or two down the hatch no problemo!
The opposite is also true, ever notice when your plate is full of single ingredient minimally processed whole foods you generally eat to satisfaction and then stop? For the most part these ‘basic’ foods have all the necessary enzymes intact within them, they are super satiating and big surprise they’re also chalked full of nutrients!
Overeating a bunch of spiced up turkey breast, white potato with butter and a bunch of vegg is highly unlikely. You eat it, satiation signals are notified in the brain and when you’ve had enough, voila ya just don’t want any more!
These foods taste great but not ‘too’ great. We get reward signals but they don’t bombard the brain and taste buds with over the top flavors that tinker with our biology. The kicker is you feel so much better afterwards, digestion is on point (assuming you tolerate the foods consumed) and your health/body composition reflects it!
As a warning, if you’re used to eating a lot of heavily processed foods, the ‘regular/basic’ whole foods can tend to taste a little bland at first. It takes some time for your palate to adjust and ‘appreciate’ the more subtle flavors of everyday food we’re geared up to taste. Once your taste buds sensitize you’ll be tasting foods like never before and the added bonus is that those hyper rewarding foods will be much too sweet/over the top for you to even crave or eat loads of!