The Biology Behind Craving Sugar

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Hey Beacon Buds!

Here we are again, writing about the sweetest topic ever, SUGAR!

So this time the big question about the sweet stuff is why on earth do we crave it?  Great question our sweet friends!  There are numerous reasons we crave sugar, among the strongest is our Biology.  So put on your glasses science smarty’s and read on!

Biology Behind the Crave:

Hardwired: Research consistently finds that we are hardwired to prefer sweet things.  This hardwiring was essential many years ago when food was scarce and we had to differentiate between safe (sweet/salty) vs. toxic (bitter) sustenance.  Today, while less essential, we do experience our genetic blueprint at work when we choose the cupcake over those neutral tasting carrot sticks at snack time.

Feel Good Chemicals: Ever feel blissful when indulging in that piece of carrot cake?  Or how about curing that super stressful day at work with a sleeve of Oreos?  Your brain/biology is also primarily responsible for this!  Sugary sweets unlock some very feel good chemicals in the brain like Serotonin, helping to quickly soothe us.  The problem here is in the quickness of the fix.  Just as soon as you finish that last Oreo, you are on to the next to keep those feel good chemicals flowing (cue overeating and disappointment).

Despite biology playing such a significant role in the onset and maintenance of sugar cravings and sugar addiction, we are not doomed because of our biological processes.  In fact, behavioral and action oriented treatments can be super effective in rewiring your brain to make more healthful food decisions.

PS. Don’t forget to check out The Beacon Program’s Behavioral Solutions to nix sugar cravings and sugar addiction for good!

With Love and Light!
The Beacon Team