Listen to episode 113:
Are we addicted to dopamine?
March 12, 2023
Have you heard of the book "Dopamine Nation", written by Dr. Anna Lembke?
As a psychiatrist, the author explores the exciting new scientific discoveries that explain why the relentless pursuit of pleasure leads to pain . . . and what to do about it.
In this episode, I summarize parts of Dr. Lembke's book.
Disclaimer: It isn't specifically about sugar.
But I can definitely see a parallel between the need for a dopamine high from drugs and other types of addictive behaviours, and our addiction to highly palatable processed food products, most of which contain refined sugar and flour.
This episode talks about:
- what dopamine is
- what neurotransmitters are
- motivation and pleasure
- the addictive potential of a behaviour or drug
- the brain's reward pathway
- the pleasure-pain balance
- how some brains are more wired for addiction
- food addiction
- the link between alcohol, sugar, and liquid sugar (like soda or juice)
- why we're more vulnerable to overconsumption in our Western culture
- the "dopamine fast"
- the advantages of abstinence
- feeling good versus feeling "less bad"
- how to get smaller doses of dopamine and feel good in other ways than with sugar
- how Life After Sugar can help YOU live a more joyful life without needing a dopamine high from sugar