Eating Sweet Treats to be Happy Can be Good

May 3, 2011

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. boost (v.) [boost] – to push something up in order to increase it, make it higher or better
Example: The President challenged businessmen to boost the poor economy.

2. manageable (adj.) [man-i-juh-buhl] – can be managed or controlled
Example: Pollution is manageable because technology provides effective solutions.
3.dissatisfaction (n.) [dis-sat-is-fak-shuhn] – being in a condition where one feels he or she needs more; lack of contentment or satisfaction
ExampleDissatisfaction is the reason why some people are not happy with what they have.

4. perk up (idiom) [purk] [uhp] – to make someone or something cheerful, happy or alive
Example: Coffee perks me up in the morning.

Read the text below.

Eating high-calorie food like chocolates, cakes and ice-cream after a bad day is not bad at all says Michelle May, MD., author of the book “Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat.”

According to Dr. May, eating to satisfy emotional needs is normal. When we were babies, we felt loved when our mothers held us close to feed us. Thus, we also tend to feel the same whenever we eat our favorite treats.

Furthermore, most of the sweets that we crave for are foods that are filled with chemicals which signal the brain to create happy thoughts and boost the mood. Chocolates, for instance, contain the chemicals serotonin and anandamide , and also cause the release of endorphins which energize the body.

Dr. May says emotional eating can be manageable if we remember four tips.

First, we should ask ourselves repeatedly if we really want to eat a treat. By doing this, we control ourselves from eating something which does not completely satisfy us because dissatisfaction is often a cause of   overeating.

Second, whenever we eat treats, our whole attention should be on the food and not on other things like the TV, computer or iPod. It is important that we enjoy the moment when eating our favorite treats because eating what we want too quickly can also result to dissatisfaction.  

Third, treats should never replace healthy food and should not be taken before a regular meal. The sudden increase of sugar in the body immediately crashes when meals are replaced with desserts. As a result, body energy decreases causing us to crave for more sugar.

Fourth, we should avoid feeling guilty about eating treats because guilt upsets our mood forcing us to perk it up by eating more.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         What do you usually do if you are feeling bad or unhappy?
·         What are healthy ways people can do to be happy?

Discussion B

·         What sweet foods do you think are healthy?
·         What kind of sweet foods are common in your country?

May 3, 2011