The Secret Weapon Your Diet is Missing

Devin’s Weekly Chat 6/8/21

SLOW DOWN DIET! 

Our brains are running on an operating system that can’t keep up with the world today as it’s evolving so fast. How does this relate to your health? We’re making decisions, doing things and acting before we even have time to think through them. 

“Handy” Model of the Brain — Using your Fist!

Wrist – brain stem

Thumb – primitive area of brain called “lizard” brain 

Top four fingers – neo cortex. The new modern brain 

Every stimulus we get starts in the brain stem (wrist) and goes up to the area where we make the immediate reaction 

Technology and food companies work hard to hijack your “Thumb” part of the brain so that you’re eating before you even know what’s happening and can make a smart decision. 

Slowing down is powerful so that all the information and stimulus has a chance to reach the neo cortex, the modern, long term thinking side of the brain 

Power of slowing down – letting your brain slow down and process. We’re faced with more stimulation than ever before and our brains can’t process it all so we act with the primitive side of our brain, often impulsive. 

HOW TO SLOW DOWN – 

Set TRAPS for yourself 

  1. Food trap tip – delete every food delivery or instant food app on phone. Hunger drives us to make fast decisions when we have the option to. Deleting apps that get us food immediately helps us to slow down and think about what to eat
  2. Purchase trap tip – delete Amazon app with the “one-click” purchase. Avoid falling into the instant gratification and allow yourself to take the extra time to go to the website and think through if we really need it

Implementation intentions 

  1. Think about what change you want to make. IE – I want to stop running into wawa to buy hoagies
  2. Put yourself through a mental rehearsal. Brain can’t tell the difference between the rehearsal and the actual behavior. Create NEW behavior and visualize yourself going through that. This creates new neural pathways since your brain is so used to doing the same thing you’ve always done. IE – Visualize yourself going into Wawa and grabbing a Greek yogurt or another food item that aligns with your heath goals
  3. Keep creating these If/then statements and write them down on paper IE “If I go into Wawa, then I will buy a protein shake.”

Two Types of Brains When Making Decisions

  1. Want Brain – urge to fulfill evolutionary and biological needs
  2. Won’t Brain – Willpower. Delayed satisfaction. The problem is the “won’t” brain doesn’t last very long….decision fatigue drains us. Willpower is really strong but it doesn’t have the endurance that that want brain has. We make over 400 food related decisions per day! Tough decisions are chipping away at will power all day 

How can we defeat the Want Brain? Recharge the Won’t Brain! 

3 Won’t Brain Recharge methods

  1. Sleep! Refreshes our ability to make good decisions. 7-9 hours/night. Quality, quantity and consistency — try to get in at least 2 of those 
  2. Meditation — slow down and focus on your breath for as little as 20 seconds 
  3. Complex carbs (simple carbs burn quickly) 
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