We already know that sugar is not good to keep weight or heart health, but the results of recent studies show that high sugar consumption has direct negative effects on our brain as well.
In small quantities, sugar is harmless. But how do we control how much sugar we eat daily, as it is added to 74% of the food we buy from the supermarket? Avoiding sugar is more important as researchers have discovered that it affects our brain in a number of ways.
Sugar dependence is as serious as tobacco or alcohol dependence
When a person eats sugar, it activates receptors in the taste buds, which send signals to the brain. These signals stimulate the production of happiness hormones, such as dopamine, which explains why it is so easy to become addicted to sweets. Some studies have found that sugar affects the brain in a similar way to cocaine , and sugar dependence is as real as nicotine or alcohol.
Neurologist Jordan Gaines Lewis has been studying this sugar effect for years: "Excessive activation of this reward system in the brain, as it is called, gives rise to a series of less pleasant events: loss of control, sweet appetite and Increased sugar tolerance, ". . Basically, the more we eat more sugar, the more we need to get the same feeling. Children who eat a lot of sweets will have problems throughout their lives to control this sweet appetite.
Sugar slows down the brain's functions
A study of UCLA researchers in 2012 on guinea pigs shows that a sugar-rich diet slows cognitive processes in the brain because communication between neurons through synapses is much more difficult. Thus, we may have difficulty in accurately remembering some details or encountering difficulties in retaining information.
By ingesting a large amount of sugar, the body becomes resistant to insulin - a hormone that regulates our blood sugar levels, but it is also responsible for how neurons communicate. Insulin strengthens synaptic connections between neurons, helps them to communicate and store information, or increased insulin resistance means that this hormone will be found in smaller amounts in the body, insufficient for the proper functioning of the brain.
Increases the risk of anxiety and depression
Variations in blood glucose also influence our mood. When the level of blood sugar falls below the level we are accustomed to, there are some symptoms such as irritability, sudden changes in mood and behavior, fatigue and lack of concentration. Sugar suddenly increases our blood sugar for a short time, but its level drops as suddenly, making us more sensitive to those symptoms. A diet rich in sweets and carbohydrates affects the efficiency of brain neurotransmitters responsible for balancing emotions.
Increased blood glucose also results in inflammation of the brain, a process that more research has indicated as a possible cause for depression. Adolescents are more vulnerable to sugar, amid the hormonal changes that take place during this period.
Also, a study in America also found that people who eat high-fat, high-sugar, salt, and saturated fat daily foods are more likely to suffer from depression or anxiety compared to those who consume moderate foods.
It favors degenerative processes of the brain
Numerous research indicates that sugar may increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease. A study in 2013 found that insulin resistance and high blood glucose increase the risk of degenerative diseases of the brain, while some scientists call Alzheimer's as "type 3 diabetes", suggesting that alimentation could play a major role in the establishment of this disease .
Be safe! A good day!