Home Videos Photos

All tag results for dopamine

Laughter Really IS The Best Medicine! Find Out How A Good Giggle Can Help Your Health!

Filed under: Silly!HealthMental HealthScience!FunnyGIFs

It turns out laughter really IS good for your health!

You might not need an apple a day to keep the doctor away, because it turns out a good laugh might just do the trick!

When a person is under a lot of stress, the brain releases the hormone cortisol, which can negatively affect memory in elderly people and even contribute to diabetes, heart disease, and issues with blood pressure!

So researchers decided to run some studies to see if a good dose of humor could

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Ice Cream Can Affect The Brain The Same Way Addictive Drugs Do

Filed under: DrugsFoodAddiction

Haagen Dazs

A recent study involving 151 teenagers has proven that ice cream, specifically Häagen Dazs, shares "addictive-like properties" with illegal drugs like cocaine.

After questioning their eating habits, scientists at the Oregon Research Institute used a Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Machine (fMRI) to scan the brains of 14 and 16-year-old kids as they were shown pictures of delicious chocolate milkshakes.

They were then given the pictured Häagen Dazs milkshake. While every participant desired to have the milkshake, the brain scans revealed that those who ate ice cream more often in past weeks enjoyed eating it less.

Lead researcher Dr. Kyle Burger explained his findings by saying:

"This down-regulation pattern is seen with frequent drug use, where the more an individual uses the drug, the less reward they receive from using it. This tolerance is thought to increase use, or eating, because the individual trying to achieve the previous level of satisfaction. Repeated, overconsumption of high-fat or high-sugar foods may alter how the brain responds to those foods in a way that perpetuates further intake."

Basically, just like drug addicts are constantly chasing the euphoria they felt the first time they experienced the addictive drug, some ice cream eaters may be doing the same by "continually trying to match the earlier experience."

Addiction will not affect everyone in the same manner, however, as Dr. Burger continued:

“Some individuals may frequently eat ice cream or other high-fat/high-sugar foods and show no characteristics of addiction, while others may develop an addictive like relationship with food. Some people will try smoking, drinking or gambling, but not develop an addiction. We often joke and say ‘I wouldn't say food is addictive, but I hear some people can't live without it’.”

More research is needed into the the correlation between our brain and food intake, but Dr. Burger concluded that the brains of those regularly eating more ice cream than others release a lower amount of dopamine, a chemical associated with pleasure. To make up for this biological reaction, participants felt they needed to eat more ice cream, a habit that could lead to obesity.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Permalink / Comments Off / Email this  »

Scientists Say Music Is Like Drugs

music is like a drug

Does this make iTunes the biggest drug dealer in the world?

According to new research published in Nature Neuroscience by a team of McGill university scientists, listening to good music can "trigger feelings of euphoria" that your brain will want to feel again, similar to using a drug.

Here's what the head scientist on the study Valorie Salimpoor had to say about it:

"If music-induced emotional states can lead to dopamine release, as our findings indicate, it may begin to explain why musical experiences are so valued. These results further speak to why music can be effectively used in rituals, marketing or film to manipulate hedonistic states.

Our findings provide neurochemical evidence that intense emotional responses to music involve ancient reward circuitry and serve as a starting point for more detailed investigations of the biological substrates that underlie abstract forms of pleasure."

We hope TOO many people aren't binging on the new Brit Brit track, now that we know that music is like a drug. Wouldn't want anyone to OD on Britney!

ha!

[Image via WENN.]

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Permalink / Comments Off / Email this  »

Can A Person Be Addicted To Food?

Filed under: FoodEating DisordersFast FoodAlcoholAddictionScience!Obese

is overeating an addiction

The short answer is yes, there is a connection between addiction and overeating.

According to a survey done in 2001 and 2002, adults with alcoholism in their family were 30 to 40% more likely to be obese than adults whose families had no history of alcoholism.

Washington University's Dr. Richard A. Grucza says that the reason for the connection between alcoholism and overating “is the nature of the food we eat, and its tendency to appeal to the sorts of reward systems, which are the parts of the brain implicated in addiction.”

Dr. Grucza believes that foods loaded with sugar, salt, and fat can be especially harmful to people who have a "predisposition for addiction."

FDA commissioner Dr. David Kessler has referred to these types of foods as "hyperpalatable," and he says they're more likely to be eaten in excess than healthier foods such as vegetables.

On a more scientific level, Dr. Kessler has written about the ability for "hyperpalatable" foods, such as fast-food, to alter brain chemistry, and trigger neurological responses that bring about further cravings for food.

On an EVEN MORE scientific level, these types of foods can stimulate the brain and cause it to release dopamine, which is a "neurotransmitter associated with the pleasure center" of the brain.

Basically, obese people associate these unhealthy foods with pleasurable feelings, and eat in excess in an effort to maintain that good feeling.

Sounds like it's not 100% straightforward, but there are most definitely connections between people with addictions to substances and people who overeat.

[Image via AP Images.]

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Permalink / Comments Off / Email this  »