Ever noticed how after you ate that tiny piece of chocolate, you ended up demolishing the whole pack? It’s not in your head – fructose makes you insatiable. Find out why it stokes the flames of your appetite and what you can do about it.
Researchers have found that fructose dysregulates our hunger signals by messing up our brain’s appetite regulation system. Unlike healthy fats and fibre, a Yale study found that fructose is more likely to stimulate your appetite, rather than satisfy it. While glucose was able to curb hunger, fructose had the opposite effect. The result? We end up in a cycle of increased hunger, sugar cravings and excess consumption of sugary foods.
Why this is a problem.
Eating fructose in excess leads not only to weight gain, but also a host of dangerous diseases. The liver takes on the burden of our fructose intake, and too much of this stuff can cause a fatty liver, resulting in increased risk for metabolic conditions like diabetes and heart disease, along with autoimmune conditions and hypertension. Take a look at a few of the ailments fructose can burden you with:
Affecting 1.9 billion people, obesity is a rapidly growing public health crisis with a deceptively sweet substance at the heart of the problem – sugar. With studies finding a link between obesity and excessive fructose intake, it’s no surprise that rates have tripled since 1975 when considering how much sugar is being added into our food sources – from yoghurt to muesli bars, even the so-called ‘health foods’ aren’t safe.
Type 2 diabetes.
Aussies consume around 15 teaspoons of added sugar each day, and that’s over double the recommended amount for women. Here’s where the problem lies – excess sugar intake can lead to insulin resistance; the precursor to type 2 diabetes. The increasing amount of added sugar in commercial products has seen a sharp jump in cases of diabetes, according to research.
While you'll find fructose in a wide range of foods, from confectionery to fruit and processed goods, it takes a far greater toll on the body when it's separated from fibre. That's what makes high-fructose corn syrup and other additives so dangerous when it comes to obesity.
Afflicting around 25% of the population, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is one of the major health conditions associated with excess sugar consumption. You might be surprised to learn that those of you who stay sober can still be affected by liver disease – in fact, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is predicted to projected to become the leading cause of cirrhosis within the decade.
Mental health conditions.
Studies have shown rates of depression are greater in those who eat a high-sugar diet and another study shows anxiety is reported in higher numbers in people over 60 who consume sugar in excess. One study found people who drank 2 soft drinks a day had stress hormone levels 22% higher than those who did not, showing a scary link between increased stress and sugar.
This sweet substance disrupts countless body functions, with many sugar addicts able to attest to the fact that the mental health effects can be debilitating. But there is something you can do for your health – both mental and physical.
What you can do about it.
So, just ditch fructose and it’s all solved, right? Well, it’s not that simple. Kicking a sugar habit can be a sizeable challenge when factoring in the effect sugar has on the brain. Studies show sugar triggers our brain’s reward system and provokes a stronger reward response than cocaine. This is because it causes the release of dopamine in the brain, triggering our reward-system. It’s no wonder the cookie monster is always fervently munching through a bag of cookies. Many of us face the same temptations as we end up locked in a cycle of dopamine-seeking eating habits, and when we attempt to cut this addictive stuff out of our diets, withdrawal symptoms set in. These include:
- Headaches and fatigue.
- Mood swings and irritability.
- Muscle pain.
- Intense cravings for sugary foods.
That’s why it pays to have a support system rallying behind you and a toolkit of handy craving-management techniques at your disposal – this is where we come in.
We’re hosting the 8-Week Program to help people ditch their clingy sugar habits and take their health back into their own hands. With nutritious recipes, meal plans and exclusive content from our team of health experts, we’ll guide you every step of the way. Sound good? Don’t wait – JOIN NOW!