Health – Brian Fung – This Is Your Brain on Diet Soda: How Fake Sugar Makes You Overeat – The Atlantic
The murky waters of diet soda science may have just gotten a little clearer, though. New research shows that the sugar substitutes used in diet beverages actually change how our brains’ reward areas work.
Researchers took 24 young adults, half of whom were habitual diet soda drinkers who consumed a sugar-free beverage once a day or more. The other half avoided diet soda. Hooking them up to brain scanning equipment, the scientists fed each group of study participants a stream of water sweetened alternately by natural and artificial sweeteners.
Because the brain’s reward center is also responsible for controlling energy intake and the motivation to eat, the scientists believe that their results help explain why diet sodas appear to drive people to consume more food than they should:
One of the strongest links seen was diminishing activation of an area known as the caudate head as a recruit’s diet soda consumption climbed. This area is associated with the food motivation and reward system. Green and Murphy also point out that decreased activation of this brain region has been linked with elevated risk of obesity.
“The brain normally uses a learned relationship between sweet taste and the delivery of calories to help it regulate food intake,” Swithers explains. But when a sweet food unreliably delivers bonus calories, the brain “suddenly has no idea what to expect.” Confused, she says, this regulator of food intake learns to ignore sweet tastes in its predictions of a food’s energy content.
It’s worth remembering that this is a small-scale study, performed in a way that leaves room for error. Still, it’s the latest report suggesting that a scientific connection may exist between diet sodas and poor health — a finding that could expand the scope of anti-obesity efforts.
MIT researchers have developed needleless shots like the ones administered by Dr. McCoy, and it’s cool technology:
“The injector is built around a Lorentz-force actuator–a small, powerful magnet surrounded by a coil of wire that’s attached to a piston. When the system is charged, it interacts with the magnetic field to produce a force that pushes the piston forward. This force ejects the drug at a pressure and velocity strong enough to get through skin, but supposedly feels no worse than a mosquito bite.”
At last, Trekkies and Trypanophobes have something in common. Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have pulled a page from Star Trek’s book and have developed a technique for givin..
Moreover, “corn sugar” has been known to be an allowed ingredient for individuals with hereditary fructose intolerance or fructose malabsorption, who have been advised to avoid ingredients that contain fructose. Because such individuals have associated “corn sugar” to be an acceptable ingredient to their health when “high fructose corn syrup” is not, changing the name for HFCS to “corn sugar” could put these individuals at risk and pose a public health concern.
So I’m waiting for a prescription at my local phaRxmacy. Along comes this fellow who asks the phaRxmacist what to do about a burn since he can’t afford health care.
She tells him the basics of burn care, no don’t use that peroxide again, something to moisturize, aloe, etc. Then she asks him where his burn is. He lifts his pant leg up to his thigh and there are LARGE DARK RED SCAR TISSUE PATCHES all up and down his leg, and his ankle is the same size as his knee since it’s obviously infected badly.
He has a job, because he’s telling the nice lady about some project he did and the people he did it for, but I don’t recall more details because I’m more worried about the chances he has of NOT getting gangrene.
Ladies and gentlemen, say what you will about capitalism and profiteering, the govee, politicians, insurance companies, etc., but we CAN NOT keep letting our health care system allow folks like this feel they have no choice. Look at it as simple economics – pay a little for preventative care and/or initial treatment or we can keep ignoring things until they turn into HUGE UNSOLVABLE PROBLEMS that cost tons more money to fix.
Sure sounds like penny wise pound foolish to me.