AskBwog: Are Sugar Highs a Thing?
Written by Bwog Staff
We’re all trying to get back in the swing of things for the new semester, especially waking up at the buttcrack of dawn for that 8:40 lecture. While the go-to energy source is the ever-reliable black gold, coffee, some purists would prefer to avoid caffeine induced seizures. If you’re one of those types, Bwog is here to tell you that another potential energy source is out the window: sugar.
My mom would never buy me sugary drinks or candy as a kid because she said it would make me “bounce off the walls.” I’ve got some early classes this semester that I’m having trouble staying awake through, and I’m not a coffee drinker. Will eating those sugary snacks denied me as a child help me remain alert in my classes and while pulling all nighters during finals?
Yours from dreamland,
Exhausted in EC
It turns out that your mom was actually perpetuating an age-old urban legend: there is zero scientific evidence that literal sugar high, i.e. hyperactivity associated with the intake of table sugar, is a genuine phenomena. In fact, according to at least one study, the sugar high might even be induced by the expected effect of sugar intake.
In this study, mothers who self-reported that their child’s behavior was affected by sugar were split into two groups. Half were told that their child would be administered a glass a Kool-Aid, the other half an aspartame-sweetened drink. In actuality, all of the children received an artificially flavored drink with no sucrose, and then engaged in play with their mothers.
The result? Those mothers who were told that their child had ingested sugar reported that their child behaved hyperactively, and were also observed to hover over the child and be more critical of them during play.
It seems then that sugar high is not a genuine hyperactive experience, but rather the expectation of parents who want a scapegoat for their poor child management abilities. So it suffices to say that Bwog doesn’t think whatever sugar ingesting plan you had—hopefully not snorting Pixy Stix—probably isn’t going to keep you awake during class.
Not the solution via Shutterstock