Control Your Cravings

Slave to your heart’s every desire? Find out how your brain may be of help.

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When it comes to food, do you find it challenging to choose health over flavor? If so, you may want to enlist your dorsolateral prefrontal cortex next time you open the fridge. This small clump of cells buried deep within the brain seems to be responsible for willpower, according to a Science study conducted at Caltech by neuroscientist Todd Hare. Scientists found that dieters who were able to exercise self-control used this portion of the brain, which is also linked to working memory and meeting goals. Having trouble with all three? Good news: The research team is already developing brain-training exercises to help people improve self-control, which may offer alternative treatment for over-eaters, drug addicts, and smokers alike.

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