A team of scientists from the University of Exeter in England has developed a new app to help fight cravings for sweets, cookies, chips and other fatty and sugary foods. The so-called junk food.
The app, called “Food Trainer” (available for free on the Google Playstore e l’Apple Store, in English), it is simple to use: first you have to choose which categories of food you want to consume less (cheeses, biscuits, sugary drinks, etc…). Then, while some images appear quickly, you have to click as quickly as possible on those that have a green circle, to earn points, being careful not to click on those circled in red. Obviously, the cucumber is in a green circle and the chocolate in a red circle.
It may seem like a game for kids but on the university website scientists explain that this app “Reprogram” the brain’s reward system, increasing “The activity in some parts of the prefrontal cortex involved in controlling our behavior, and reducing the activity in the parts of the brain involved in the preparation and execution of an action”.
Basically, ignoring junk food and boosting the reward system for healthy foods would be enough to train the brain to choose a piece of fruit instead of a packet of chips.
“Playing this game over and over again creates associations between certain foods and actually puts the brakes on your eating behavior.” According to the first experiments, this “game” reduces calorie intake well. The app was tested on 83 adults, who used it four times a week. On average, participants would have eaten 220 fewer calories than usual, every day… But the researchers want to confirm these results with more future users.
Below is a video of how the app works:
At this link the study of the research team: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195666321002221?via%3Dihub
Source: Il Blog di Beppe Grillo by beppegrillo.it.
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