Can Sugar Affect Our Memory?

A new study shows a diet high in sugar can affect your ability to learn and remember information

With the rise in obesity and diabetes, sugar continues to be a huge focus in today’s concerns with diet and health, as studies continue to show the negative impacts of too much sugar.

The Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology at UCLA performed a study in which they gave two groups of rats water with added fructose: One group had omega-3 fatty acids added to the water, while the other group did not.

The study tested the rats’ brain efficiency by training them on a maze twice daily for five days. After that period they stopped for six weeks and re-introduced the maze. They had standard food throughout the six weeks, but one group consumed water with fructose and the other had omega-3s. The rats who consumed only the fructose water without omega-3s took longer to finish the maze, had higher triglycerides, insulin, and glucose levels, thus leading researchers to speculate that sugar affects how we think.

Although there are theories as to why excessive sugar might cause changes in thinking ability, there isn’t a set answer on a molecular level. With more studies showing the negative impacts of a diet consisting of excessive sugar, this topic will continue to be researched in hopes of a direct correlation.  

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