Did you know in the US, 80% of girls have been on a diet by the time they’re 10 years old? Many women – myself included – have struggled with their weight, often to no avail.

The reason for that is because of our brain.

The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that regulates body weight, and there are more than a dozen chemical signals in the brain that tell your body to gain weight, more than another dozen that tell your body to lose it.

This system works like a thermostat, responding to signals from the body by adjusting hunger, activity and metabolism, to keep your weight stable as conditions change.

But why? And how?

In this honest, raw talk published on TED.org, neuroscientist Sandra Aamodt talks about this, and uses her personal story to frame an important lesson about how our brains manage our bodies.

Sandra explores the science behind why dieting not only doesn’t work, but is likely to do more harm than good. She suggests ideas for how to live a less diet-obsessed life, intuitively.

The solution to dieting is mindful eating, similar to what’s promoted by Beth Shaw in her new book YogaLean.

Check out this video, and let me know what you think. Do you practice mindful eating?