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Pizza Perils: Decoding Pizza Addiction


Hey there!

Get ready to dive deep into one of the most beloved yet potentially addictive foods - pizza! 🍕 In this week's episode of the Keep the Weight Off podcast with Dr. Angela and Marchelle, we're unraveling the mysteries behind why pizza can be so irresistible and even addictive.

Here's a sneak peek of what you'll learn:

👉 The science behind why pizza is so pleasurable and sets us up for addictive-like responses.
👉 Six reasons why pizza can be highly addictive
👉 How the accessibility and social factors surrounding pizza contribute to its addictive nature.
👉 Practical tips for enjoying pizza in a healthier way, including alternative crust options and mindful toppings.
👉 Insightful reflections on finding alternative rewards that don't compromise your health goals.

Dr. Angela and Marchelle will guide you with their expertise and personal insights, offering valuable strategies for navigating cravings and making mindful food choices.

Take care, and we can't wait to catch up with you next week for more empowering insights!



Episode Highlights:

(05:56) Michael Moss wrote a book called "Salt Sugar Fat", in which he interviewed food scientists. He explains that the food industry has zeroed in on this combination of salt, sugar, and fat because it triggers an intense reward activation in the pleasure centers of the brain. The food industry has even named this phenomenon, and they call it triggering the brain's “Bliss Point". Pizza is a “Bliss Point" food. It contains all of these elements: salt, sugar in the tomato sauce, fat in the cheese, and the crust containes flour that gets turned into sugar, and all of this activates the reward center.

(07:54) Cheese contains casein, which breaks down into casomorphins in the body. “Caso” is cheese and morphine is like an opioid. So casomorphins can bind to the opioid receptors in the brain, and that will relieve pain and bring pleasure similar to the effects of other opiates like heroin and morphine. Now, think about combining it with all the other ingredients in pizza; this really can contribute to the addictive nature of pizza.

(10:42) Pizza is often associated with social gatherings, parties, and events. You're relaxed and you're having fun. It's easy and everyone loves it. So this social aspect can create positive associations in our brains. In other words, pizza means happy times, and this really reinforces its appeal and makes it all the more pleasurable and addictive.



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