Taking Good Care of Your Prefrontal Cortex Part Two
Updated: Jan 12, 2021
What are you feeding your brain? This is often overlooked when it comes to addiction and depression recovery. Yet, what we put in our body for nourishment has a direct effect on how we think, feel and behave.
On one side of the spectrum, highly processed foods with unhealthy fats and too much sugar drains our energy. The brain can become dull and our emotional reactions can become distorted. This is caused by the bodies lack of nutrition and ability to make quality energy for it’s functioning.
Sugar dense and processed foods stimulate dopamine in the brain. Dopamine plays a role in how we feel pleasure. Sugar has the same effects on the brain that addictive drugs have. If we are constantly eating too much junk food then we are overstimulating our brain with dopamine which leads to a crash. What makes it worse, is that are body is left with nothing to re- energize and function with. This ends up putting us in an even deeper hole. If we do this day after day, we are putting ourselves at risk of diminishing moods and unnecessary struggle.
The brain requires more energy than any other organ in the body. Your body needs nutrient dense foods full of vitamins and healthy fats to keep your brain energized and focused throughout the day. This helps us to improve our cognition and to stay alert. Our prefrontal cortex, the brain’s executive functioning, runs better. This gives us an upper advantage in our daily recovery.
It is important to stay “fueled up”‘ Think of your body as a machine that requires the best fuel to operate. Don’t let your body go too long without fuel. In our addiction, we would go for long periods of time without eating, and then when we finally ate, it was garbage. Don’t do this to yourself. Keep giving your body the good energy it needs throughout the day so you can feel more awake and happy.
Many of us did a lot of damage to our brains over the years and need to think seriously about what we can do to help repair it. Healthy nutrition and sleep, as mentioned in yesterday’s email, are the first two ways we can achieve this.
Action: Make eating nutrient dense and healthy foods a part of your recovery routine for your brain. Stay “fueled up”.