What Do Sugar and Cocaine Have In Common?
Here’s a scary fact for you to ponder… When scientists took MRI images of the brains of people consuming sugar and highly addictive drugs like cocaine, the same pleasure centers in the brain started lighting up. Sounds pretty, scary, doesn’t it? But what does the similarity between sugar and cocaine actually mean for your brain and your overall health?
First of all, sugar is truly addictive. What that means to you is that consuming sugar will alter your brain chemistry, and over time you will start to crave more and more sugar. The urge for your next sweet “fix” comes more frequently, and you’ll need to consume larger amounts of it which is true with any drug. Like most drugs, sugar comes with some pretty scary side effects. Long term, not being able to fit into your favorite pair of jeans because of your cookie addiction will be the least of your problems.
Sure there will be weight gain, but with your increased sugar consumption you’ll also increase your risk of developing Type II Diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure as well as your risk of stroke. Add to that the extra stress the added weight puts on your joints… 10 extra pounds puts 3 times that number, or 30 pounds of extra pressure, on your joints. It’s also harder to get enough oxygen pumping through your body. It’s no wonder you don’t feel well as you put on weight. All these different health conditions are referred to as metabolic syndrome, and it’s just one of the things you can look forward to as you continue to feed your sugar addiction.
Much like a cocaine addiction, harming your body and compromising your health doesn’t really matter all that much when you’re faced with a box of donuts. Then, as with any highly addictive drug, there will be unpleasant withdrawal symptoms as you start to wean your body off of sugar. Don’t believe me? Think it’s easy? I challenge you to give it a try.
Cut out all added sugar for a couple of days. No more soda, no more sugar in your coffee, no candy, no cookies, no donuts. That’s just the beginning. You’ll also want to avoid all foods with added sugars like bread, most salad dressings, ketchup etc. Cut all those foods out and don’t eat anything without checking the label for added sugars. See how you feel after a few hours.
If you’re like most people, it will start with a little headache and then the headaches will really begin. You’ll start craving something sweet. We’re talking serious cravings. Next, that little headache will start to grow into a full blown pounding headache along with other complaints such as joint aches. You may also experience some nausea, and don’t be surprised if you experience mood swings, too. Some people will even have flu like symptoms and begin to shake a day into their sugar detox.
I don’t know about you, but to me that sounds a lot like the withdrawal symptoms of a “serious” drug addiction? That’s because sugar addiction is just that. A serious addiction…
If you’re ready to get off sugar, I highly recommend the course, Sugar Detox. Check it out, and let me know what you think. It’s never too late to get healthier by getting off sugar!
Helping You Achieve Major Wellness!
Cheryl A Major, CNWC
Certified Nutrition & Wellness Consultant
I’m Cheryl A Major, and I work with people of all ages and challenges to help them understand how and what to eat to get healthy quickly and deliciously. Download your 10 Tips for Healthy Eating on a Budget, and get started right away!