Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Does sugar, stress and stimulants play a role in mental health?

The more sugar and refined carbohydrates – such as commercial cereals, cookies, muffins, cakes, and sweets – that you eat, the more you become unable to maintain even blood-sugar levels.  The symptoms of blood-sugar problems, technically called hypoglycemia, are many, and include fatigue, irritability, dizziness, insomnia, excessive sweating (especially at night), poor concentration and forgetfulness, excessive thirst, depression and crying spells, digestive disturbances, and blurred vision.  One of the world’s experts on blood-sugar problems, Professor Gerald Reavan from Stanford University in California, estimates that 25 percent of normal, non-obese people have insulin resistance.  This means their bodies don’t respond properly to their own insulin, whose job is to keep you blood-sugar level even.

Sugar in only on side of the coin, as far as blood-sugar problems are concerned.  Stimulants and stress are the other.  When your blood-sugar level dips there are two ways to raise it.  One is to eat more glucose, and the other is to increase your level of the stress hormones adrenalin and cortisol.  There are two ways you can raise adrenalin and cortisol.  Consume a stimulant – tea, coffee, chocolate, or cigarettes.  Or react stressfully, causing an increase in your own production of adrenalin.  You can now see how easy it is to get caught up in the vicious cycle of stress, sugar, and stimulants.  It will leave you feeling tired, depressed, and stressed much of the time.

If you would like to break free from this vicious cycle and eradicate the negative effects it has on your mind and mood, consult your natural nutritionist to help you break free from your addiction to caffeine, while improving your diet.  Vitamins and minerals are important because they help to regulate your blood-sugar levels, and hence your appetite.  They also minimize the withdrawal effects of stimulants and the symptoms of food allergy.

Karolyn 


Sheinken, David, Schachter, Michael, Hutton, Richard. The Food Connection: How the Things You Eat Affect the Way You Feel-And What You Can Do About It. New York: Bobbs-Merrill Co. 1979.

Ruden, Ronald. The Craving Brain. New York: Harper Collins. 1997.

Nehlig, A. Are We Dependent upon Coffee and Caffeine?: A Review on Human and Animal. Neurosci and Biobehav Reviews. 1999. 23:563-576.

Greden JF. Anxiety or Caffeinism: A Diagnostic Dilemma. Amer Journ Psychiatry. 1974. 1089-1092.

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