Unhealthy gut bacteria tells you to eat when you're not hungry
What makes you want to eat even when you're not hungry? Scientists at UCLA now know exactly why.
Increased amounts of certain microbiomes could be causing you to binge-eat, or eat "hedonistically." That's the news from a recent UCLA study about how your gut's bacteria contributes to your overall health. It's no secret that a healthy diet can promote a faster, sharper brain, and it's also no secret that your brain views junk food and drugs similarly. What wasn't known is which particular metabolites were making all the difference.
For those about to eat or have recently eaten, this article has the word "poop" in it four times. Five if you count that one in the last sentence. Anyway. Here we go.
According to the study, available here, it's a metabolite called indole that's the main culprit in overeating. In a 67-person study, by using a combination of MRI brain scans and fecal matter analyzation—both ends covered, so to speak—the researchers were able to look not only at the end results (the poop) but also the brain activity of the participants to see what messages their guts were sending their brains. Higher amounts of indole meant more "pleasure eating" and lower indole populations meant better regulation.
There's a lot about indole you should know. It's among several microbiota that gives your poop that, um, poop smell, but it's also used in perfumes as it is found naturally in certain flowers in low amounts. In some cases, it can actually smell like jasmine. The higher the indole, the more it smells like poop.
Your gut produces indole (and leagues of other microbiota), but that ability gets thrown out of whack if you don't eat right or take too many antibiotics. Indole is also naturally found in veggies such as broccoli, sprouts, cabbage, collards, cauliflower, kale, mustard greens, turnips, and rutabagas, just to name a few.
Our best advice? Eat probiotic-rich foods and veggies. Over-the-counter probiotics may help rebalance your gut after a round of antibiotics. Over 25 million people in the U.S. alone suffer from IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), so you're not alone if your gut culture isn't in tip-top shape.
And cut back on the snacking. Snacking, i.e. eating when you're not hungry—while fantastic fun—isn't healthy. In fact, it may be a direct cause of types of cancers and other diseases. Sorry if that ruined your evening. If it helps, I just crushed a bag of chips right before writing this, so we're all in the same boat.
Understanding thinking talents in yourself and others can build strong teams and help avoid burnout.
- Learn to collaborate within a team and identify "thinking talent" surpluses – and shortages.
- Angie McArthur teaches intelligent collaboration for Big Think Edge.
- Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Archeologists had been doubtful since no such ship had ever been found.
- In 450 BCE, Greek historian Herodotus described a barge that's never been found.
- When the ancient port of Thonis-Heracleion was discovered, some 70 sunken ships were found resting in its waters.
- One boat, Ship 17, uncannily matches the Herodotus' description.
The blood of horseshoe crabs is harvested on a massive scale in order to retrieve a cell critical to medical research. However, recent innovations might make this practice obsolete.
- Horseshoe crabs' blue blood is so valuable that a quart of it can be sold for $15,000.
- This is because it contains a molecule that is crucial to the medical research community.
- Today, however, new innovations have resulted in a synthetic substitute that may end the practice of farming horseshoe crabs for their blood.
The Canadian professor has been on the Joe Rogan Experience six times. There's a lot of material to discuss.
- Jordan Peterson has constantly been in the headlines for his ideas on gender over the last three years.
- While on Joe Rogan's podcast, he explains his thoughts on the gender differences in society.
- On another episode, Peterson discusses the development of character through competition.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.