15 Dec

Is Sugar Really Addictive?

Many addictions, like drugs and gambling, are bold and in-your-face. Other addictions, however, are nearly impossible to detect. Would you believe that you might be addicted to sugar? It’s true! Added sugars, such as those found in baked goods and sodas, are dangerous for the body but very difficult to stop eating. If you are still trying to choose a New Year’s resolution, try cutting down on how much sugar you eat in 2018!   

Why Is Sugar Bad News?

The medical director of the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program explains it best: “People generally know that sugar isn’t good, but they don’t appreciate how powerfully negative it really is. If you look at all of the things in our diet we can change, pulling away from refined or added sugar will do more good than anything else.” Natural sugars found in fruit are fine, but the sugar added to your favorite icecream is not so innocent. Worse yet, added sugar sneaks in where you’d least expect it, such as in sauces and salad dressings.

The concept of sugar being dangerous to your health isn’t new, but it has gained attention in recent years. Research now links sugar to dangerous health problems like obesity, type 2 diabetes, tooth decay, and heart disease. In addition, eating sugary foods limits and replaces the healthy foods you could place into your body instead. Ideally, you should eat no more than 100 calories worth of aed sugar each day, but most Americans far exceed this threshold.

The Addictive Nature of Sugar

Saturated fat has been released from its reputation of the worst dietary villian, and now sugar has taken its place. Having a “sweet tooth” actually means you are addicted to the taste and effects of sugar. Animal studies have actually shown that sugar releases dopamine and opioids in the brain. This fuels sugar dependency just like a drug!

As explained by a clinical dietitian Jessica Murgueytio, “Consuming large amounts of added sugar activates the reward center and makes us want to eat that food again. When this happens, you can have increased cravings for sugar [and] feel a lack of control when around sugar.” Of course, eating more and more sugar leads to weight gain, sluggishness, mental fog, and many other unwanted side effects.

Find Out What Your Body Feels Like Without Sugar

Freeing yourself from the confines of a sugar addiction is difficult but not impossible. As 2018 begins, try replacing sugary snacks with more wholesome and satisfying options. Your body will feel so great once it adjusts to less added sugar that it won’t be difficult to maintain your progress. For extra support, just call (727) 525-0900 to make an appointment with Dr. Kavita Rao in St. Petersburg, Florida. Dr. Rao will help you develop a customized plan to reach your goals.