It's that split second decision. We know we shouldn't do it.
But we do.
Kit Kat down. Milky way down. Peanut Butter Cup down.
CRAP. I need to stop.
But those hits of dopamine feel really good. What's next, Butter finger?
This is the internal battle that goes on in my head everytime that sneaky little Halloween candy makes it way into my home on October 25th (ish) and stays until the first week of November.
We all have cravings and we all give in. AND THAT'S OK.
But when a one day binge turns into a two week binge, we're in trouble.
It's partly not our faults, you know.
Human nature has us wired to crave high fat, high sugar foods.
We love those hits of dopamine. We pop that piece of chocolate and it's a euphoric feeling, similar to getting a hug, being intimate with our lovers, or that post exercise high that we crave. We love feeling loved.
Our internal drive also craves these instant hits of energy because back in the day (really, really back in the day) we didn't know whether a bear was going to start chasing us, or if we'd get to eat the next day, therefore eating something high in fat was not only a necessity, but also a feast to be celebrated.
But here's the problem. We don't starve anymore (generally speaking) and we literally don't need to hunt for our food to eat (generally speaking).
So put down the M&M's and walk away. Here's why:
1) Candy is made up of simple sugars. We get an instant rush of insulin which results in immediate energy, but as we know, the crash comes later. The problem with ingesting too much sugar is that the body can't use it all up. It puts a strain on our liver, pancreas, and kidneys, and stores in our body as excess fat. Long term diets high in sugar can lead to diabetes and heart disease.
2) Sugar halts white blood cells from being strong and in turn this dips our immunity. We are in the heart of cold and flu season right now, and for seniors a pneumonia can be deadly. Ain't nobody got time to be sick!
3) High sugar causes our hippocampus to be smaller. Our hippo- what? Our hippocampus is the area of our brain linked to memory. Can't remember your mom's birthday or why you were supposed to call Aunt Jane? Take a look at your eating habits and daily intake.
Halloween is fun, scary, and exciting. Enjoy the day, have a treat, and then get rid of the candy.
Disperse it at the office. Hide it away until December and decorate a gingerbread house as a fun craft with your kids, or send it overseas with www.operationshoebox.com to our soldiers at war.
Everyone needs a hit of dopamine in moderation.