Below are some great articles about eating and mirror neurons that are easy to read and understand
Mirror Neurons And Eating Behavior
Another reason that we eat more with people that are overweight is because of something called “Mirror Neurons”.
Click on the link below for the waitress study, or go to the next slide for more information on mirror neurons.
Might an overweight waitress make you eat more? How the body type of others is sufficient to alter our food consumption
How Your Friends Can Make You Overeat
– Sabatouers and mirror neurons.
Check this out :
Mirror neurons work automatically and unconsciously so if you would like to keep your healthy weight then you must learn to work with them. You see, mirror neurons can be your best friend or your worst enemy. In our brains they reproduce the activities that we are observing. So if you see somebody eating a chocolate brownie “chocolate brownie eating” parts of your brain get activated and so increases your desire to eat one. Even just looking at photos can activate these areas of our brains and motivate us to eat. The more our mirror neurons are exposed to eating, the more powerful the brain activation and the more intense the craving.
As you watch your friends eating the chocolate brownie your mirror neurons are telling your brain what’s going on, but your pleasure centers are shut happy because they are not getting any stimulation. This amps up your cravings even more, because now your brian begins to ANTICIPATE what eating the brownie would be like. You start to think how delicious it would taste. You think how the texture would feel in your mouth and how you would feel if you just took a bite. This is all the workings of your brain, as it goes through your past experiences of eating foods similar to the chocolate brownie.
You are doing well if you have still managed to hold out, but next comes the biggest craving. The greatest brain activation is achieved when anticipation is paired with a degree of uncertainty. So you have your limbic system telling you how delicious it will be, your mirror neurons are activating the movement patterns that are associated with eating the chocolate brownie, and your pre-frontal cortex is saying “No please, I have to stick to my diet!”. Under these conditions of “it might happen, it might not happen”, humans are extremely motivated to seek pleasure because we get an intense reward when it does occur. This is what you constantly face when you see people eating foods that you desire but cannot have. It’s not long before the intense cravings finally overpower your willpower and you give in to temptation.
The food industry knows about mirror neurons all too well. That’s why they place their food everywhere for you to see. They know that the more you are exposed to their advertisements the more you are likely to consume what they are selling. They are also extremely cunning in how they present their product. Have you ever noticed that food manufactures sell their products by having people consume them while having fun and being really happy. Its because these manufactures know that when you watch this the areas of your brain related to happiness and fun and pleasure get associated with their food or drink. Check it out the next time you watch an advertisement. Oh and isn’t it weird that the actors are almost always really good looking and in great shape? Its almost like consuming their product can help you with that too…..
In this study, researchers give a study participant some cookies to eat and then placed a plant/pacesetter beside them to share the cookies. The pacesetter is instructed to eat a certain number of cookies. This could be 6, 3, or just 1 cookie.
The results of this little experiment is always the same. Whatever the pacesetter ends up eating, the unsuspecting snacker ends up eating also. If the pacesetter eats 1, the snacker eats 1. If the pacesetter eats 6, the snacker eats 5 or 6.
As humans, we tend to eat the same as those that we eat with. This is because eating is a social, emotional, and intellectual activity, not just a necessity for our physical survival.