Music, chocolate, sex ………….
Your preferences are wired into your brain and are impacting on your hedonistic behaviours.
Brain scan psychic
Reasearchers from Dartmouth University have discovered that brain scanning you today, can predict what you will do tomorrow.
I know it is a little creepy, but the wiring in nuclear accumbens, your reward centre, dictates what you find cool. And you ultimately do, what your brain says is cool.
First years get scanned
The team scanned the brain’s of a group of first year college students, as they arrived on campus. The students did volunteer, it wasn’t a requirement to be admitted onto the campus !
The type of scan performed was a fMRI – this machine is able to pick up your “unconscious” responses by measuring blood flow.
The student’s reaction to a wide variety of images was documented. The images include animals, beautiful scenery, yummy food items and some good looking peeps.
Bleeps on the radar in response to…
As expected, what lit people’s buttons varied among the participants on the day.
But it really became interesting when the research team tracked down the participants 6 months into their first year “away” from home. What happened to these students when there was no beady eye of Mom or Dad to watch what they were up to.
Food lovers were…………you guessed it, fatter.
People lovers were…………….. loving lots of people. I don’t mean in an altruistic love thy neighbour way, we’re talking in a steamy passionate in the bedroom kind of way.
You do what your brain thinks is cool
Yup, it all boils down to satisfying the desires of the whimsical part of your brain, which is your personal fun faire, the nuclear accumbens.
There lots of ways to buy tickets, the way you do it, depends on how you’re wired.
Of course, we’re not all that sure what determines how you are wired. Probably a little bit of genes and a lot of environment i.e. previous experiences, good or bad.
Guarding your willpower
Maybe you feel a little doomed…………… if you’re wired for bedroom exercising or kitchen exercising, both can leave you with significant health “troubles”.
The Dartmouth team put a positive spin on this roadblock to self-control by pointing out, just because you like it, doesn’t mean you HAVE to do it.
Willpower is a verb
The WILLPOWER comes from understanding how you are wired. Armed with this knowledge, you could short circuit the wiring – it won’t automatically happen, you need to work at it !Individual Differences in Nucleus Accumbens Activity to Food and Sexual Images Predict Weight Gain and Sexual Behavior. J Neuroscience (2012) 32(16): 5549 – 5552. Kathryn E. Demos, Todd F Heatherton, William M Kelly.
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