Sugar and Your Brain! NOT A Match Made In Heaven.
I just came across this image earlier this week, and it really made me do a double take. This picture allows us to have a glimpse into, what appears to be, the human brain. It allows us to see the reaction to sugar and the reaction to cocaine, and just how similar they are! The American public has been sold a bill of goods! We have been told repeatedly that high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is the devil since the late 1990's. When in reality, ALL sweeteners can be problematic and addictive.
If it were only HFCS that was to blame, it would be safe to assume that Americans would have, at that time, finally begun to win the battle of the bulge. I mean that would be a reasonable assumption, right? But that assumption would be incorrect! In fact, approximately 67% of Americans are now considered obese or overweight.
There is something that we need to make abundantly clear right now. Human beings are ALL hard wired to LOVE sugar! In fact, it is quite easy to become addicted to sugar. Scientists have shown that rats will show signs of withdrawal after sugar is removed from their diet. In 2011, a study performed at Yale demonstrated that subjects would show heightened brain activity when they would see a photograph of a sugary food, but would not experience the same activity in the brain when they would actually taste the food. This says to me that the power of the image, and suggestion, is actually stronger than the power of the sugar. But the scariest part of that is the amount of advertising for sugary foods that we are all subjected to on a daily basis, which will cause us to crave the sugary foods even more! (This is just one more reason to get a DVR and fast forward through those commercials!)
Two suggestions on how to avoid sugar in your diet:
1) Don't drink sugar (or artificial sweeteners)
My fluid consumption consists of
Water, Unsweetened Tea, Black Coffee, and Red Wine
(OK, so the red wine has some sugar, but not as much as soda!)
2) Eat More Fruit
Fruits contain a blend of different sugars, along with fiber and other nutrients. The fiber will be more satiating, and the other nutrients are obviously invaluable!
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Movement is my Medicine,
Dr. William "Chip" Bleam