Alcoholism vs. Sugar Addiction | Is Sugar Really the Problem?

I have written quite a bit on this blog, and much of it is lost in the archives from years ago.  I am reposting this article because alcohol abuse is a common problem, and many people don’t understand the connection between alcohol abuse and sugar addiction……so here you go.  Eat your heart out, Google Panda.

All of us know those moms who like to throw a few back.  Some of them openly have a few libations and the closet drinkers carry their own sippy cups around town.  Motherhood can certainly drive us to irrational behaviors, but it’s not the best idea to abuse alcohol.  Before you have your next 12 noon happy hour, take a look at this information.

Recent research has conveyed that sugar may be just as addictive as heroine. If you consider yourself a recovering alcoholic, a functional alcoholic, or just a heavy drinker who has always struggled with occasional alcohol abuse, you may want to look at the possibility that you may actually be addicted to sugar.

Most people don’t realize that alcohol is actually the quickest acting sugar on the brain. In short, a “buzz” is actually a sugar high. The first research on sugar addiction in 2001 was conducted at Princeton University, and scientists have come so far since then that research is now focusing on how to address the problem (not whether or not it exists).

Sugar tends to affect the same part of the brain that heroine, cocaine, and other hard drugs do when a person uses them. The two main neurotransmitters involved with sugar addiction are serotonin and beta endorphins. We think of serotonin as the depression hormone, but it’s also responsible for concentration, attention, and impulse control. When your serotonin levels are lower, you may become less able to say “no.” Beta endorphins are that feel good chemical that is released after exercise, but this neurotransmitter is also associated with self esteem. Those with lower levels of beta endorphins who have excellent insight and are well accomplished might still have great difficulty with self esteem.

Sugar tends to increase both of these important neurotransmitters, thereby altering the brain’s biochemistry and correcting the deficiencies that may have been there. In other words, there are many people who are self medicating for specific deficiencies with sugar, and they are likely addicted to sugary foods for this reason. Even sugar replacements such as Splenda tend to trigger cravings for sweet foods, thereby feeding the sugar addiction.

An excellent 7 step program for changing the brain’s biochemistry and effectively treating sugar addiction is the book, Potatoes, Not Prozaac. In this book, the author outlines and describes these seven steps, which have been highly effective in helping people considered “treatment resistant” in other treatment centers. I would recommend referring to this book as an excellent resource if you believe any of this information applies to you. You may find that all along, your problem was actually sugar addiction, not alcohol abuse and depression.