Thursday, April 7, 2016

Treating Sugar Addiction like Drug Abuse?

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/04/160407111828.htm

According to a Queensland University of Technology study, drugs used to treat nicotine addiction can also be used to treat addiction to sugar. Sugar acts on the brain in a similar way to drugs, and so FDA approved addiction medication, like Champix, actually reduces cravings for sugar. The researchers also found the same effects when using artificial sweeteners, suggesting that the sugar epidemic isn't caused purely by sugar, but sweetened foods in general. The research concludes that further research is required, although the same medications used to treat addiction to drugs could also be used to tackle the obesity epidemic.

It's interesting to think about how sugar and drugs have a similar effect to the brain, especially moving from the nutrition unit to the drugs unit. Sugar doesn't seem to be really treated as a highly addictive substance, although it very well might be.

Do you think sugar should be treated as a drug?
Should someone currently obese or at risk of being so be prescribed anti-addiction medication?
Do you think anti-addiction medication is necessary to help reduce obesity rates in the US?

22 comments:

  1. I found this article kind of scary! The fact that sugar can be compared to drugs is crazy, and I had no idea how much of an impact sugar had on our brains. In the article it says, sugar will "repeatedly elevate dopamine levels which control the brain's reward and pleasure centres in a way that is similar to many drugs of abuse including tobacco, cocaine and morphine." This is exactly what we are talking about in class right now. When reading that statement, I thought about the documentary we just watched and hearing all those people talk about how you should never do drugs and it ruins your life. This article is basically saying that sugar can do the same thing! That's crazy because there is sugar in pretty much everything these days, and if someone gets addicted it can lead straight to obesity and becoming overweight and that can change someones life.

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  2. Sugar should be treated as a drug because, according to the article, it says that sugar acts on the brain in a different way to drugs.
    Someone should be at risk of being at risk of anti-addiction medication because it sometimes can cause side effects.
    Anti-addiction medication is not really necessary to help reduce obesity, unless if someone is, they can take the medication.

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  3. I don't think sugar addiction should be treated with the same drugs being used to treat nicotine addiction because those are 2 different issues and they have to be treated each one in a different way, considering their own symptoms and conditions.

    No, they shouldn't because there are other healthy ways to lose weight, like eating fruits and vegetables, drinking water, and exercising.

    For this reason, I don't think anti-addiction medication is necessary to help reduce obesity rates in the U.S.

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  4. I have no opinion on wether or no sugar should be treated like a drug. Sure it can do some increasingly terrifying things to our bodies, but I'm not all that sure if it is right to treat it as a drug. Again I'm not sure if it is necessary to put an obese or a person in risk of becoming obese on prescription drugs to wean them away from sugar. I don't think it could harm anyone in trying, but there's also no proof that it will actually help people lose weight. And no I don't think anti-addiction drugs are necessary to lower the amount of obese people in the US, I think that if an obese person is actually serious about losing the weight they will do what ever they can to get to a point where they do actually lose weight.

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  5. Sugar is very addicting and I would know from personal experiences because there have been many time where I would eat tons of candy at one time because the sugar was so addicting. "drugs used to treat nicotine addiction can also be used to treat addiction to sugar." I think that this is true and eventually could happen in the future because in health class we have learned how addicting drugs can be on the brain and the long term effects and if sugar has the same effects then it is very dangerous. The nicotine for sugar could very beneficial in the future because it could help lower the obesity rate and help people be healthier.

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  6. It is very disturbing to discover that sugar can have effects that are as adverse as some drugs. That being said, anything consumed in excess can have detrimental health effects, and sugar is no exception. I think that more effort should be made to ensure that people are aware of the potential negatives, and daily sugar intake percentages should be listed in the nutritional information of food. I think doctors should have the ability to and discretion over whether or not they prescribe medications to combat these negative effects of sugar.

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  7. A drug, by definition, is "a medicine or other substance which has a physiological effect when ingested or otherwise introduced into the body." So by that logic, technically sugar can be considered a drug, since it can have a physiological effect, creating an addiction. This article mostly just talks about how medications for nicotine addictions have similar effects with animals with sugar addictions, which honestly is quite alarming, since it shows how sugar really can be seen as addictive as nicotine, which is a known drug thats detrimental to ones health. I feel like more testing on how effective these drugs are on humans to help their addictions of sugar is needed before it can be considered to help any overweight addicts, since the article only states it helped animals. For anti-addiction medication to be even considered needed to help obesity rates, obesity first needs to be taken seriously by everyone so that people will be more willing to get help and understand that its a serious problem that can be helped. Along with people taking it more seriously, I think that people will be more careful of how they care for themselves, which will also help obesity rates. But for serious cases, anti-addiction medication should be able to be prescribed to those who have their lives of the line.

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  8. This article was a welcome relief, because we keep hearing about how sugar acts the same way as cocaine (Fed Up) After reading the article however, I was surprised by at least part of it. There are 7 billion people in the world, right? Then why are there 1.9 billion people overweight? It's a good thing that nAChR drugs exist to counteract this behavior then.

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  9. As we all should know sugar are everywhere, we eat it every single day. during the health class we learned about sugar and how it can harm our body but this made me feel better put sugar in my mouth. It said that sugar epidemic isn't caused purely by sugar, but sweetened foods in general. I know that sugar are harmful but it not as harmful as I think it would be. I LOVE SUGAR!!

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  10. If sugar gets treated like a drug, would the government possibly regulate its use? If so then I don't think it should be treated as a drug because if it is taken away given that almost every food contains sugar, it would be a shock to everyone in their everyday lives. If something is restricted then more people will want to have it which means a bigger obesity rate. If that's not the case then I don't have an opinion whether or not sugar should be treated as a drug but I don't think that people who are obese should take these prescribed anti addiction medication because considering that everyone is so accustomed to sugar in a daily manner then this medication would maybe take a long time to get rid of sugar cravings and these drugs (ingested for a long period of time) could have unknown side effects on the people taking it.

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  11. Sugar addiction should not be treated with the same drugs being used to treat nicotine addiction. They are 2 different issues and should both be treated in different ways, especially knowing they have different symptoms and side effects. People currently obese or at risk shouldn't take anti obese medicine because there are better and healthier ways to lose weight such as eating better, drinking water, and exercising. Coming to my conclusion I don't think medication is necessary to help reduce obesity rates in the U.S.

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  13. Although sugar is addictive, I don't think it should be treated as a drug. Like they said in the article, it's not just sugar but also artificial sweeteners that have this effect on the body, and if it's treated as a drug then almost every food is going to have to be regulated some how. However, I definitely think there should be a reasonable and accurate daily recommended amount and I think people need to be educated on the negative effects of sugar. I also have mixed feelings about this because if cigarettes, alcohol, and drugs have restrictions...I don't understand how an eight year-old can go buy a twinkie and a coke. It's awful for your body. I think anti-addiction medication for sugar could actually be really helpful, because food is most definitely an addiction.

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  14. I think sugar is very much like a drug but only for some people therefore I don’t think it should be treated like a drug. They are two different things and there are two different solutions to the problems. I think if it is an extreme situation then yes they should take anti-addiction medication for the health of the people who are suffering. If people ate healthy and exercised then they would be fine even though I know it is really hard to do. A lot of people are lacking motivation, in my opinion.

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  15. I think sugar is a lot like a drug because it does similar affects like other drugs. There are also different kinds of sugars that are good and bad for you as well. A lot of people eat foods that contain sugars everyday, so trying to help the same way people who are addicted to drugs are. than there would be a large amount of people seeking for help. Anti- addiction medication would be a good start for people to help their addiction of sugar. as a start from there.

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  16. This article was amazing because it explained the brains reactions to drugs and how it can compare to drugs as well. But should sugar be treated as a drug? I do not think so because if it was, then it can scare people into thinking that they been taking "drugs" their whole life. Plus the government may regulate sugar use. I don't think that someone who is obese should be given this drug to help stop sugar addictions. Even though it may sound like a "quick fix", I don't think that it is a good idea because you can be at risk for side effects. In health class, we learned that every drug has at least 70 possible side effects, so I think that we should take more action to help obese people and encourage them to limit their diet. Although, this drug may sound like a possible "cure" to world obesity, it may not be the best option because we will not be helping obese people. We are solving one issue and ignoring other issues that is at a possibility to leading other health issues.

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  17. It makes sense that sugar would be considered an addictive drug. It stimulates the pleasure reward system like many other drugs do. I think its important for us as a society to address this issue especially since 1.9 billion people are considered overweight. I found it interesting that high levels of sugar intake can affect your motivation and emotions. I think we see being overweight as a social issue rather than a medical issue. We should be trying to help these people that have an addiction. People always say its so easy to loose weight, you just eat less. But maybe if we viewed sugar as a drug and being overweight as a sign of addiction, we could more effectively solve the problem.

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  18. In my opinion, sugar should not be treated like drugs. Drugs usually have a negative impact no matter what you use it for. Yes, if you consume a lot of sugar there are still consequences such as obesity and diabetes. Even though 1.9 people are overweight, they have the option to burn it off. Sugar is way easier to avoid than drugs because sugar is part of your everyday life and tolerance will kick in.

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  19. In my opinion, sugar should not be treated like drugs. Drugs usually have a negative impact no matter what you use it for. Yes, if you consume a lot of sugar there are still consequences such as obesity and diabetes. Even though 1.9 people are overweight, they have the option to burn it off. Sugar is way easier to avoid than drugs because sugar is part of your everyday life and tolerance will kick in.

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  20. I don't think medication is necessarily the best solution to the obesity problem because that could start a whole other addiction wave in the U.S. Eating the amount of sugar that we do today has a lot of health risks and the number of obese people continue to rise everyday. Treating sugar like a drug is kind of an overreaction. Demonizing sugar as we have drugs and tobacco might not go the way we plan. Sugar can be burned off, drugs cannot, sugar is not a drug.

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  22. I feel that what is mentioned in this article is absolutely true and it's visible in our lives we see sugar as a necessity in our diets to make things good when in reality the more this stuff is consumed the more we put our health at risk. Everything we consume has sugar and we see it as a normal thing that we really shouldn't care about, the problem is many people who do see it as a problem think we should demonize sugar but in the end they wouldn't be able to because of the large part sugar has become of our lives. And any attempt to eradicate it would mean nothing in the end.

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