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Most people make a New Year’s resolution in one form or another, whether that’s to eat healthier, join a gym or save money.
However, the majority of resolution makers will have given up on their good intentions, and will ultimately fail, on January 26th, a day that has been dubbed the ‘Temptation Tipping Point’.
Food Psychologist Dr Christy Fergusson and supermarket Iceland, have released new insight into how and why many people reach their Temptation Tipping Point (TTP) on this particular date, as well as data pinpointing a spike in sales of ‘tempting foods’ including pizza and chocolate around 26th January.
Dr Christy explains, 'Whenever you try to create new habits – follow a healthier diet, exercise more and reduce stress there is a cocktail of chemical changes happening from the inside out. A physiological shift occurs and this is what can trip people up.'
During the first week in January, you are visualising your new and improved self and by the second week you have normally started trying to achieve your goals, adds Dr Christy.
'During this time, your cell's receptors respond well to changes, and they flood with feel-good chemicals. Keep it up, however and by week three you start to feel a change as your cells begin to try to accept this new information. This creates discomfort and you start to crave comfort.'
That initial high you experienced when you first began your health kick has been replaced with boredom, feeling stuck and a desire for comfort. 'This is when familiar unhealthy food can become incredibly tempting,' Dr Christie says.
Data released by Iceland also backs this up, as sales of those oh-so-naughty foods increased sharply during this week in 2017.
Sales of chocolate were up by 24 per cent, pizza 15 per cent, cake 15 per cent, ice cream 14 per cent and alcohol up by 6 per cent.
If people can move past the Temptation Tipping Point on the 26th January and stick with their resolutions, their cells will adapt and the discomfort will reduce. But how can you retrain your brain to think differently and make it past this point? And what steps can you take to keep yourself on track when your resolve starts to wobble?
Iceland has plenty of inspiration with its More Ways to Eat Well recipes, encouraging shoppers to create nutritious and delicious dishes. For more information click here.