The human brain needs sugar to function. It is the only nutrient that can help your body produce energy, regulate moods, and control appetite. However, too much sugar can hurt your cognitive abilities. The average American consumes over 150 pounds of sugar every year, which equals about 3 cups per day! Learn how this sweet substance affects you in simple terms with our blog post. We’ll tell you what happens when you overeat sugar…and, more importantly, what you can do about it!
Sugar and the Brain
Your brain is made up of cells that are called neurons that send electrical signals throughout your body. Every time you think, move or feel something, your neurons signal these messages to your brain. For these electrical impulses to travel through your body, they need a source of fuel. Glucose from carbohydrates is the primary source of energy for your brain. If the sugar level in your blood is low, so you cannot think clearly because the neurons in the brain do not have enough power to communicate with each other. They often send out random signals, usually resulting in anxiety or mood swings.
What Happens When You Eat Sugar?
Glucose is the body is stored in the liver and muscles for later use. If an individual consumes more sugar than can be stored in these areas, excess sugar accumulates in the kidneys and other organs. It causes damage. There is also a hormone called insulin which keeps blood sugar levels from getting too high. When you take a meal that contains carbohydrates, the pancreas releases insulin into the bloodstream and signals your body to store glucose in cells throughout the body. The cells cannot access the glucose without help from insulin, so when there is not enough or no insulin in the bloodstream, your brain does not receive energy and begins to misfire.
Effects of Excess Sugar
Excess sugar can cause mood swings, agitation, and anxiety or affect your ability to think clearly because the neurons in the brain cannot communicate effectively without energy. In addition, this can lead to overeating behaviours since low blood sugar levels often result in cravings for calorie-dense carbohydrate foods like cookies and cakes.
How to Avoid Sugar Overload
A healthy diet with limited sugar intake is the best way to stay focused and positive. For example, when craving something sweet, choose fresh fruit over candy since your body digests natural sugars more slowly, thus providing glucose for a more extended period. You can also satisfy your cravings with naturally sweet foods such as Greek yoghurt or fruit. By making some small changes, so you can get your sugar fix without derailing your brain chemistry!