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Sleep Habits Affect Your Food Habits

Sleep deprivation can increase cravings for high-calorie junk foods

Night owls beware, if you're not getting enough sleep you increase your chances of choosing a junk food diet! Researchers from UC Berkely have found that sleep deprived participants were more likely to desire high-calorie junk foods compared to well-slept participants. Brain scans showed that sleep deprived people had less blood flow to the frontal lobe, the area of complex decision making and more blood flow to brain areas governing impulse and rewards.

Positive Tip: A good nights sleep will help encourage healthy choices.

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Cravings for Salt May Begin in the Cradle

Early exposure to sodium may set the stage for a lifetime of salty desires.

Do you love to lick salt from the surface of foods? That desire may have started in infancy. Babies either dislike or are indifferent to salt when born. In a small, observational study, researchers have found that exposure to starchy table foods such as ready-to-eat cereals (a significant source of dietary sodium at this age) in the early months tended to prefer salty solutions over water by 6 months of age. When those who ate starchy foods as babies were retested as preschoolers, they were more likely to seek salt.

PositiveTip: Avoid adding starchy foods to an infants diet until after 6 months. This may help avoid a lifetime love for salty foods.