The Long-Lasting Impact of Sugar
By Editorial Staff
Ahh, sugar – so addictively sweet to so many people who crave their daily sweets at the end of the day, to start their day ... or all day long. Unfortunately, the negative health impact of sugar has been exposed in recent years, so much so that avoiding it is regarded by many experts as the single most important dietary consideration.
One of the problems with consuming sugar, according to new research, is its long-lasting health impact, particularly for adolescents. In fact, the study suggests adolescents who consume sugar (in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages) in excess amounts are more likely to suffer memory problems as adults. Published in Translational Psychiatry, the study revealed that daily consumption of sugary beverages appeared to increase levels of "bad" bacteria in the GI tract, compromising the gut microbiome and affecting hippocampal function. The hippocampus is the area of the brain responsible for memory, particularly the transition of short-term memories to long-term ones.
There are two clear takeaways from this study for parents: 1) Limit your children's intake of sugar, particularly sugar-sweetened beverages, which have become ubiquitously available (and in large quantities) just about everywhere. 2) The gut microbiome is a powerful entity, and disrupting it – with too much sugar or anything else (antibiotics, etc.) – can impact not only the gut, but also the entire body. Talk to your doctor to learn more.
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