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Yes, You Can Be Dependent on Sugar

Dr. Maloof: As I state to my patients, diet plays an important role in how a child functions in and out of school. Give a child a bowl of sugar-laden cereal in the morning and you’re producing a monster for school. Getting kids off of sugar is an integral part of allowing them to reach higher health goals. This article shows the relationship of brain function and sugar consumption.

Could many of us be slaves to our sweet tooth? New research in rats suggests that the brain can become dependent, if not outright addicted, to sugars in food.

The brain has opioid compounds and they seem to be released by palatable tastes such as sugar, fat, ice cream and cake.

Numerous studies have shown that the activity of the nucleus accumbens, an area in the forefront on the brain, is key to the "high" sought by abusers of cocaine, amphetamines, nicotine and other addictive substances. Drug intake stimulates receptors in the nucleus accumbens to release high levels of opioids as well as dopamine, the neurochemical thought to be a driving force behind drug-seeking behavior. Because the nucleus accumbens is also involved in regulating normal feeding, food might induce similar behavioral responses.

Researchers fed rats a sugary solution for 12-hour periods over a number of weeks, then either abruptly cut off the rodent’s supply of the sweet treat or gave them a drug that blocked the brain’s opioid receptors. The result? Compared with rats fed regular chow, sugar-fed rats developed "mild" symptoms indicative of withdrawal, such as teeth-chattering, an increased frequency of high-pitched crying and anxiety. And when researchers allowed these rats renewed access to sugar they "binged"-consuming up to 30% of their daily sugar intake within the first hour of re-introduction.

Subsequent laboratory investigation of the brains of sugar-fed rats showed an accelerated growth of dopamine receptors in the nucleus accumbens, indicative of a growing dependence on sugar. The behavior of the rats in the study is similar to patterns seen in drug abuse and withdrawal.

Taste, rather than calories, seems to trigger this neuro-behavorial process. Rats fed saccharine displayed similar dependent behaviors to those fed sugars, even though saccharine contains no calories.

Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Society Toronto June 17, 2001

Quotes of the week

"Fear less, hope more, eat less, chew more, whine less, breathe more, talk less, say more, love more and all good things will be yours." Swedish proverb

"Better health is a choice; choose the right path." Dr. Catherine Maloof

"Health is a balance between your internal and external environment." Maureen Maloof

"The world’s greatest drug store is our own body…we need to allow our body to heal itself."

Dr. Catherine Maloof

Why do my adjustments not seem to hold well?

Since this is a very commonly asked question, I thought it would be a good idea to elaborate on it in this week’s newsletter.

The first aspect I would look at is your current level of health. Adjustments will only hold as good as your current health picture will allow. What is health? It is optimal physical, chemical, emotional, and spritual well-being. I have patients who do not hold adjustments well, because they are under tremendous job stresses, or have recently gone through emotional stresses, such as divorce or loss of a loved one. I also have patients who can’t hold adjustments well because of poor diet. Just keep in mind that if your nutrition is lousy, then your body is devoid of essential nutrients. Without good nutrients, your nervous system, muscular system and internal functioning is weakened. Finally, physical stresses, such as being overweight, previous traumatic injuries, such as car accidents, falls, etc, will lead to weakening of the spinal structures and an inablilty to hold adjustments well. Your current exercise level is also important because weakened muscles cannot hold adjustments very well.

The next aspect is your previous life experiences. By this I mean any traumatic events that have occurred in your life. It is my clinical experience that physical, chemical, and emotional traumas that have previously occurred are held deep within the central nervous system. These experiences mold your posture, your current neurological and mental health, as well as determine your current level of health. People who have had traumatic experiences (single or multiple) store them in the nervous system energetically until something can release the pent-up stress. I use a gentle technique that allows this type of release. So, if you have many stresses from earlier in your life your adjustments won’t hold as well because there’s too much negative stress held neurologically. The only thing that can change this is continued corrective spinal adjustments and continued energetic releases of those held in stresses within the nervous system. With the techniques I use, I have witnessed dramatic changes in people’s lives when these old stresses are released.

Sometimes, if you are not holding adjustments it’s simply for the fact that you’re not getting adjusted frequently enough for the body to retrain itself. It is common for the spine and nervous system to need more frequent care for six months to a year before graduating to a wellness care program.

If you, a friend or family member would like a consultation please call my office and schedule a time.

Dr. Catherine Maloof
(949) 581-6543

You may view Dr. Maloof’s website by clicking www.drmaloof.com

Dr. Maloof Online, ã 2002 

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