Expert Corner

Why Is Sugar So Addictive – Sugar Dependency

We can all agree that some of us have a sweet tooth or craving sweet food. Why is sugar so addictive? Our world is full of intensely delightful sweet delicacies, whether they be cakes, chocolates, cookies, lollipops, or soft drinks. It’s sometimes impossible to avoid consuming certain things because there is much sugar dependency.

Australians consume 60 grams (14 teaspoons) of table sugar (sucrose) per day on average. Sugar consumption is a major cause to the rising obesity rates in Australia and around the world.

Sugary foods or craving sweet food can become engrained in our habits and lifestyles. Dessert might feel like the finest part of dinner when you add a spoonful of sugar to your coffee.

If you’ve ever tried to reduce your sugar intake or reduce craving sweet food , you know how difficult it can be. For some, it may appear to be an impossibility. This raises the question of whether sugar addiction or craving sweet food is possible.

Why Is Sugar Addiction A Problem? Or Why Is Sugar So Addictive?

Sugar may be found in a variety of foods, from cupcakes to pies to iced coffee drinks, and it’s nearly impossible to avoid.

Sugar addiction, or craving sweet food often known as emotional or psychological dependence on sugary foods and drinks, is a serious worry among American health professionals.

When processed meals and refined carbohydrates are metabolized, they produce more sugar in the body. Sugar is not toxic in moderation; nonetheless, many people overdo it.

According to a recent study, Americans consume much too much sugar. To be more specific, almost 75% of Americans consume too much sugar, with many of them being labelled as having a sugar addiction.

How Do People Develop A Sugar Addiction?

Sugar consumption or sugar dependency can give the body a short-term high and a burst of energy. Sugar, according to some research, is just as addictive as cocaine. Sugar causes a dopamine release, which many people love.

Sugar overindulgence, however, is associated with long-term health consequences such as obesity and diabetes due to its addictive nature. Sugar addiction, like other compulsions or behavioral addictions, is especially dangerous for persons who have low moods, anxiety, or stress.

Additionally, people who suffer from constant tiredness may reach for carb-rich sugary foods for a boost. Sugar releases endorphins in the body and combines with other chemicals in the body, resulting in a surge of energy.

Once someone mentally connects sugar with help providing energy, they may become dependent on it (usually inadvertently).

People may begin to crave sugar to balance irritability, emotional lows, and other conditions. At this point there is often little control over dietary habits, and a sugar addiction has developed.

Signs Of A Sugar Addiction

Sugar addiction, unlike many other substance use disorders or behavioral compulsions, is typically straightforward to detect.

Consumption of huge amounts of sugar-laden food or beverages is one of the most obvious indicators of sugar addiction.

The person may eat incessantly, eat to avoid boredom, and become hyper and crash as a result. They may even express a need for sweetness following stressful or frustrating life events.

Sugar Addiction And Emotional Eating

Sugar’s capacity to deliver rapid energy, along with the delicious flavor of sugary meals, may appeal to some people. Sugar provides a “quick cure” for some people after a long and stressful day.

People who are going through breakups or other emotionally unpleasant events frequently turn to chocolate or scoops of ice cream to help them cope. Those who use sugar to cope with emotional concerns, on the other hand, are more likely to get hooked.

Weight gain and difficulties focusing on daily responsibilities are also signs of sugar addiction for emotional relief.

Read Also: Control Sugar Levels When You Have Cancer, A Report

These negative effects can harm one’s self-esteem, generate emotions of powerlessness, and reduce one’s self-worth, leading to more sugar consumption and a more serious addiction.

Binge Eating Sugar Addiction

Binge Eating Sugar Addiction is a particularly dangerous element of sugar addiction. Binge Eating Sugar Addiction is defined as eating a large amount of food in a short period of time, followed by feelings of guilt, embarrassment, and disgust.

This can involve an emphasis on sweets for the same mood-regulating and self-medicating consequences as non-sugary foods Binge Eating Sugar Addiction .

It’s important to remember that eating, particularly sugar, is only a temporary remedy for emotional problems. Consider counselling or sugar addiction rehab if you or someone you care about is depressed and using food as a crutch.

Sugar Addiction And Anxiety

Anxiety and sugar cravings are inextricably linked. There are underlying causes for eating disorders such as binge eating and anorexia.

Often, the individual who is suffering from such conditions is going through psychological and emotional difficulties.

Sugar consumption is typically related with stress eating, which is a classic example of the association between eating disorders and anxiety.

Anxiety leads the body to release the stress hormone cortisol, which can reduce appetite in some people. Stress, on the other hand, may lead to increased sugar cravings in persons who already enjoy it.

When sugar addiction coexists with anxiety-relieving eating, the final outcome is usually weight gain. Sugar, despite initially increasing serotonin levels in the brain, can exacerbate anxiety by causing sugar lows.

Sugar Addiction And Alcoholism

There is an unexpected genetic link between children of alcoholic parents and sugar addiction. A recent study found that when sugar is taken, dopamine receptors in the brain light up, similar to how they light up in the brain of someone who abuses alcohol.

This may encourage persons who have a sweet tooth to become alcoholics.

Individuals who are addicted to alcohol have a higher predilection for sweets and suffer from sugar cravings and withdrawals.

Alcohol-abusing parents’ genes, as well as their sugar preferences, can be passed down to their offspring. As a result, the child could be prone to both of these compulsions.

Sugar Withdrawal

Many people who cut sugar out of their diet experience irritability, fogginess, moodiness, and low energy as withdrawal symptoms.

Because many people who are addicted to sugar have binged on sweet meals, withdrawal and cravings can be severe. Regrettably, many people prefer to revert to eating sugary foods in order to achieve the same chemical release in the brain.

A far better method is to undertake a nutritional swap, in which the sugar addict replaces unhealthy sweets with natural and healthful alternatives to regain control.


Realizing that one’s sugar addiction is a problem is the first step toward change. Dietary changes and self-control exercises can assist, but going cold turkey isn’t recommended. Sugar addicts, especially those who have another drug abuse disease or a co-occurring mental health issue, will find it difficult to overcome their cravings. Please contact a treatment provider today to learn more about your choices if you or someone you love has a sugar addiction, especially if complicating conditions are present.


Articles with medical material must be used solely for the purpose of providing general information. Such materials should not be used for (self-) diagnosis or treatment of specific illnesses or medical conditions. They cannot, for example, replace a licensed physician’s or pharmacist’s examination, advice, or treatment. The articles will not be used to respond to any specific questions.


Q- How can I break my sugar addiction?

  • Sugary foods should be avoided.
  • Don’t entice yourself by loading your cupboards and fridge with candy, cookies, and other high-sugar items.
  • Make your own sweetener.
  • Start with plain yoghurt, unflavored oatmeal, and unsweetened iced tea.
  • Keep an eye out for hidden sugars in foods.
  • Breakfast should be consumed.

Q- Is it possible to grow addicted to sugar?

A- Sugar, according to some research, is just as addictive as cocaine. Sugar causes a dopamine release, which many people love. Sugar overindulgence, however, is associated with long-term health consequences such as obesity and diabetes due to its addictive nature.

Q- What happens when your body develops a sugar addiction?

A- “Headaches, lethargy or feeling weary, cravings, muscle discomfort, nausea, bloating, and even sleeplessness are some of the most typical sugar addiction symptoms. In the majority of cases, these symptoms worsen after 24 hours.

Q- Sugar cravings are caused by what deficiency?

A- Sugar cravings can also be caused by mineral deficiencies, such as zinc, chromium, iron, calcium, and magnesium, according to Elia. Magnesium insufficiency is very important to be aware of.

Q- How long does it take to completely detox from sugar?

A- Sugar detoxes are when you eliminate additional sugar from your diet for a set amount of time, such as seven, twenty-one, or thirty days. Snack on fruit, eat more protein, and remain hydrated to detox from sugar. Sugar detoxes can help with sugar cravings, as well as aid in weight loss.

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