Tuesday, December 5, 2023

A sweetener that can be more addictive than cocaine and heroin

A nadie and bitter a candy. This popular saying has a lot of truth that can be seen even in other species: sweet foods and sweeteners They are addictive. Sometimes even more powerful than drugs considered harsh. Specifically, studies conducted on rats showed that 94% of these animals preferred a specific sweet substance over cocaine and water when they had only three options to choose from. What substance is it?

About this sugar and according to World Health Organization (WHO), Europe is already immersed in a health and economic crisis in large dimensions as a result of the increase in obesity and diabetes obtained from the consumption of this substance. In this sense, the organization predicts it “epidemic” for 2030 but the predictions came true in 2022: almost two out of every three Europeans are overweight.

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While in the eighties of the last century 108 million adults suffered from this metabolic disease, in 2014 there were already 422 million people in this condition, which means a 75% increase in cases of around the world in just three decades.

The same thing happens with nicotine and heroin.

A study conducted on laboratory rats showed that, when these animals were given a choice between pressing a lever to drink a small amount of water sweetened with saccharin or activating another that injected cocaine through an intravenous catheter, most of them want access. in a sweet solution.

This effect seems to occur with other drugs as well. In another test conducted by the same research group, a similar result was observed in heroin. And these same authors observed, in a third study, that when rats were given the option to choose between nicotine and water sweetened with saccharin, the animals preferred the latter.

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