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Another Reason For Moderation: Overeating Affects Your Brain

Not only does overeating make you digestive system work overtime, but it also does a doozy on your brain.

American scientists recently found that overeating stimulates a usually dormant immune pathway in the brain. Once stimulated the brain then sounds the alarm for the immune system to battle invaders that aren't really there. The overactive immune system then creates an inflammation response all over the body. Chronic inflammation leads to chronic disease like type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

The pathway between the hypothalamus, the brain center that regulates energy, and the immune system is usually inactive — a remnant of an immune system that we have evolved beyond needing. It seems that "overnutrition," a scientific term (or euphemism?) for overeating has stimulated this vestigial immune system and the consequences are making us ill.

While scientists hope this discovery can lead to a medical intervention for obesity and obesity-related illnesses, it is just another reminder that moderation is key to a healthy lifestyle.


Join The Conversation
JessicaLE JessicaLE 8 years
Oh and my fingers would swell to the point that they would pulsate! It was really horrible.
JessicaLE JessicaLE 8 years
Yep, I'm with yall. I used to have a real problem with binge eating (I'm proud to be able to say that is now the past), and it got to the point that if someone just touched my arm or leg, it would induce real pain. Even bathing hurt. So yeah... I totally believe it.
psterling psterling 8 years
I've gotten a handle on eating the right foods, but I must admit that I struggle with portion size. This is definitely informative.
hippiecowgirl hippiecowgirl 8 years
That would explain the icky feeling I get after I overeat. It's more than just my stomach. My hands swell, my face feels puffy and I usually end up with a headache.
mtiger mtiger 8 years
I agree GlowingMoon. When I overeat, I feel sick, too. I'm bloated, I get a's not worth it. Besides, who wants the extra pounds?
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 8 years
Wow, this article is eye-opening. Personally, I think it is true. When I overeat (usually due to PMS), I do feel sick, and I'm extra bloated all over. This is ON TOP of pre-existing PMS issues. Horrible.
Halie Halie 8 years
This is better reason to not overeat than just unwanted weight gain!
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