JUN 11, 2021 9:07 AM PDT

Excess Sugar in Children May be Linked to Attention Deficit Disorder

WRITTEN BY: Annie Lennon

Researchers led by the Queensland University of Technology in Australia have found that children who consume excessive amounts of sugar may be at a greater risk for a host of health issues including obesity, hyperactivity and cognitive impairment as adults.

For the study, the researchers studied several groups of male mice that were 5 weeks old at the start of the experiment. They were followed for a total of 12 weeks during which some had access to two bottles of plain water at all times while others had access to a bottle of plain water and a bottle of 25% sucrose solution at all times. Another group had access to a bottle of 25% sucrose solution for a 2 hour period Monday to Friday. 

In the end, the researchers found that mice who consumed enough sugar over the 12-week period to significantly increase weight gain had an abnormal and excessive nervous system response to novelty. Their episodic memory and spatial memory were also altered. The researchers noted that these results are similar to those who report attention deficit and hyperactivity disorders. 

The researchers say that their results are very promising, although they admit that more work needs to be done to see if these results are replicable in humans. They nevertheless say that unrestricted consumption of high-sugar food and beverages in the Western diet is increasingly thought to be linked to the obesity epidemic, as well as attention-deficits and hyperactivity disorders. 

“Our results show for the first time that long-term consumption of sucrose leads to significant weight gain and produces persistent hyperactivity and learning impairments,” says Selena Bartlet, one of the authors of the study. 

“Interestingly, our investigation with the mice found reducing the daily sucrose intake four-fold did prevent sugar-induced increase in weight gain, supporting the WHO’s recommendation to restrict sugar intake by this amount would be effective.” says co-lead author of the study, Dr. Arnauld Belmer, “It could also limit the other negative consequences including hyperactivity and cognitive impairment.”

 

Sources: Science DailyFrontiers in Neuroscience

About the Author
  • Science writer with a keen interest in behavioral biology, consciousness medicine and technology. Her current focus is how the interplay of these fields can create meaningful interactions, products and environments.
You May Also Like
MAY 06, 2021
Technology
New Neural Implant Can Help Study Multiple Areas of the Brain at Once
MAY 06, 2021
New Neural Implant Can Help Study Multiple Areas of the Brain at Once
We’re probably all familiar with seeing images of the brain with different areas labeled: the frontal lobe, occipi ...
MAY 10, 2021
Plants & Animals
Sharks Can Use Earth's Magnetic Field to Navigate
MAY 10, 2021
Sharks Can Use Earth's Magnetic Field to Navigate
How do sharks make transatlantic journeys without losing their way? New research published this week in Current Biology ...
MAY 17, 2021
Neuroscience
Genetic Changes in Brain Immune System May Cause Psychosis
MAY 17, 2021
Genetic Changes in Brain Immune System May Cause Psychosis
The exact biological mechanisms behind psychosis, a condition that changes one’s perception of reality and often i ...
JUN 05, 2021
Technology
Robotic Exoskeleton May Improve Response to Exercise-based Rehabilitation in People With Severe MS
JUN 05, 2021
Robotic Exoskeleton May Improve Response to Exercise-based Rehabilitation in People With Severe MS
Robots are most often found in science fiction. Recently, however, researchers are using robot-like technology to help p ...
JUL 05, 2021
Cannabis Sciences
Prenatal Cannabis Exposure Lessens Effects of Antidepressants
JUL 05, 2021
Prenatal Cannabis Exposure Lessens Effects of Antidepressants
Researchers at Indiana University have found that mice exposed to cannabinoids while in the womb are less responsive to ...
JUL 21, 2021
Technology
Digital App Helps People Make Positive Eating-Habit Changes
JUL 21, 2021
Digital App Helps People Make Positive Eating-Habit Changes
We all have moments where the only thing that can comfort us is food, and a lot of it. However, such behavior can very q ...
Loading Comments...