Is Shopping Better than Chocolate?

So you're too tired to exercise and you know that piece of chocolate will settle right in your midsection.  What can you do to get a similar high without the sweat or the calories?  According to recent research reported by, shopping just might fill the bill.

It seems that shopping releases two chemicals in the brain, serotonin and dopamine.  Both produce a "high" or feeling of pleasure.  Serotonin is associated with mood.  Low levels of serotonin are associated with depression.  Dopamine gives us an intense level of pleasure. 

It's the release of these two chemicals, according to researchers, that make shopping such a pleasurable experience for some people.  A successful shopping trip leads to positive feelings of success, attractiveness and self-worth.  Of course the down side to all this is that people can become addicted to the good feelings that they get from shopping.  These "shopaholics" can get themselves into serious trouble, running up debts that they can't pay and destroying relationships.  But true shopaholics are rare.Happy_shopper

But for the average person the shopping experience can be better than chocolate, exercise, or even love-making.  Besides providing the goods and services that are necessary for our standard of living, retailers provide a kind of "therapy" that can be very helpful to stressed-out consumers.  By providing a pleasant shopping environment for your customers, you can add to the "high" that they experience and help them to relieve stress. 

It's a win/win situation.  And, it's calorie-free!

Here's a link to a CBS news video on this story, but I couldn't get it to work.  Maybe you'll have better luck.


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