The internet, junk food and your brain

Everyday occurrences in our lives right? Well, maybe not every day with junk food.

But what you may not know is that these seamlessly benign things are Supernormal stimuli.

Which is a fake stimulus so powerful that we actually prefer it to the real thing!

Nobel Prize winner Nikolaas Tinbergen discovered this in his observations of nature:

*Butterflies would prefer a cardboard mate who had artificially enhanced marking.

*Stickleback fish would attack a wooden model more viciously if the underside was redder than in nature.

But how does this apply to us?

Well, the internet is so stimulating that it’s not uncommon to see people prioritizing it over their own ‘real’ life!

The other downside is that social media has been linked to increases in depression and anxiety.

And junk/fun food is engineered to be more appealing than its natural counterpart. This is to sell more units, lower production costs and extend shelf life.

The downside is it’s hard to say ‘no’ to food that stimulates us so much. Pretty obvious as obesity rates are skyrocketing.

So what can we do?

I would advocate you examine your relationship with the internet, junk food and other supernormal stimuli in your life.

Before partaking in an activity ask yourself ‘is this natural or is it enhanced’.

Now I’m not trying to demonize any of these things, but it would be prudent to be aware of them.

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