In physical terms, sugar has a great influence: increases energy in our body. But does it influence our behaviour? Is it possible that we act differently because of high amount of consumed sugar?


You are what you eat right? I guess that would probably apply with how internal physiological responses to food consumption may result in various behaviours.

According to Flora and Polenick (2013), there are some counter-intuitive evidence about sugar and its effects on human behaviour:

"To this point, what is known about the effects of sugar consumption on human behavior and performance is that sugar consumption, even in high amounts, does not contribute to hyperactivity, inattention, juvenile delinquency, reductions in cognitive performance, or other behavior problems in children or adults. Instead, a high level of glucose, or sugar, consumption actually improves athletic, academic, and cognitive performance, and may enhance self-control. Sugar consumption may reduce aggressive behavior, and sugar consumed during breakfast and in afternoon snacks improves performance during a wide range of activities."

Notably, they indicate that sugar can reduce aggression in both children and adults and implied aggressive behaviour:

"Just as Bachorowski et al. (1990) observed improved behavior of juvenile delinquents after they consumed a sugar-filled breakfast, research suggests that sugar consumption may reduce aggressive behavior in adults, as well as in children. Benton and Owens (1993) found that, compared to undergraduate participants who consumed a placebo non-sugar beverage, participants who consumed a sugar beverage were less likely to show aggression, use profanity, or bang on the computer while playing a frustrating and intentionally impossible computer game."


Sugar can induce addiction based on mesolimbic dopamine... http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2714381/

That is the main effect on behavior...

Also sugar intake will have efects on insulin and vice versa: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2FBF02342828

So answer is yes... it is possible that we act differently, especially after long exposure to that food.

In addition the addiction to sugar can induce impulsive behavior by weaknes of prefrontal lobe... http://books.google.hr/books?id=OwKOpU6rjMsC&pg=PT11&lpg=PT11&dq=sugar+neuroimaging+impulsive+behavior&source=bl&ots=AIXOZz77uE&sig=Fa9iwmlhgoRMQuKqXQirOw7ZzH8&hl=en&sa=X&ei=di9DUq2SJaeg4gT95YCQCQ&ved=0CDwQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=sugar%20neuroimaging%20impulsive%20behavior&f=false

and also sugar can cause obesity in long term... http://cdn.intechopen.com/pdfs/40323/InTech-Food_addiction_obesity_and_neuroimaging.pdf


I feel that this question is vague. Obviously sugar-seeking behaviour abates after significant consumption of sugar due to satiation. Therefore, the answer to the question is categorically 'yes'.

  • $\begingroup$ It could be. I trust the author was being deliberately broad. $\endgroup$ – coeus Sep 25 '13 at 23:19

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