Sugar withdrawal is like opioid withdrawal. Sugar withdrawal is real. Sugar withdrawal symptoms include headaches, muscle cramps, bloating, but the mental effect can include feeling depressed or anxious. Excessive sugar intake produces an increase in the endorphins that your body makes. Sugar also activates dopamine, which is the reward system in your brain.
You'll need to pay close attention to the hidden sugars in processed foods to be able to stop eating sugar.
References Daily bingeing on sugar repeatedly releases dopamine in the accumbens shell. Rada P, Avena NM, Hoebel BG. Neuroscience. 2005; 134(3):737-44.
Sugar addiction: the state of the science. Westwater ML, Fletcher PC, Ziauddeen H. Eur J Nutr. 2016 Nov; 55(Suppl 2):55-69. Epub 2016 Jul 2.
Brown RJ, De Banate MA, Rother KI. Artificial Sweeteners: A systematic review of metabolic effects in youth. International journal of pediatric obesity : IJPO : an official journal of the International Association for the Study of Obesity. 2010;5(4):305-312.
Shearer J, Swithers SE. Artificial sweeteners and metabolic dysregulation: Lessons learned from agriculture and the laboratory. Rev Endocr Metab Disord. 2016 Jun; 17(2):179-86.
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