A new study from Scientific Reports says there is a link between a sugar-heavy diet and mood disorders in men.
In the study, researchers were looking for links between what people ate and their medical outcomes. Tracking medical and dietary data for 8,000 people over a 22-year period, they found men who eat more than 67 grams of sugar a day — that’s about six donuts or three chocolate bars — are 23% more likely to be diagnosed with anxiety disorders or depression in a five-year period than are men who take in less than 40 grams a day.
Scientists did not find the same link with women, however.
The study also looked for a reverse effect — would men with anxiety or depression issues turn to sugar? — but found no link.
While scientists are uncertain about what causes depression, there are theories. A protein called BDNF is produced by high sugar and fat diets, and this protein may foster the development of anxiety and depression. Additionally, blame could be given to the way obesity affects a person’s mental health or the addictive nature of sugar.
All of us should limit our sugar intake to less than 5% of our daily diets, according to the World Health Organization, but Americans consume triple that amount. People in the UK consume twice that amount, on average, each day while Americans consume triple the amount.
Sugar is also the culprit in tooth decay, type 2 diabetes, and obesity, among other ailments, which is why experts suggest we all cut down.
Overweight children and adults can significantly and quickly improve their health by consuming less sugar.
According to UPI, research shows reducing or eliminating fructose, especially high-fructose corn syrup, from the diet can avert obesity, fatty liver disease and type 2 diabetes.
The study found that improved health can be seen in less than two weeks with reduced sugar consumption. High fructose corn syrup can be found in 75 percent of packaged foods and drinks because it is cheaper and 20 percent sweeter than raw sugar.
However, fructose provides no nutritional value and isn’t metabolized in the brain. Therefore, the body converts its calories to fat, but doesn’t recognize that you’ve eaten, so hunger doesn’t go away.