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  • Sugar...like alcohol?

    So I had this semi-strange experience last night, and I feel the need to share.

    I went to a huge family gathering last night to celebrate my uncle's birthday. Now my extended family is not a small bunch, so there was food everywhere. And my grandmother, who is super sweet about understanding my eating habits, made a batch of salted dark chocolate almond bark. Yeah. I haven't had chocolate in a long time, so I thought I would have my 20% and eat some of that. I ended up eating a lot more than I intended, and I was completely wired. I was off the walls loud, dancing around, interrupting people, being majorly extroverted. Which I am not, normally. Everyone kept asking what was wrong with me, since I was acting so bizarre and everyone else was completely fine. It eventually wore off, but then a couple hours later I crashed. Hard. Nausea, headache, anxiety...it was awful. I then realized that both of these reactions are exactly the same as to when I have been drinking. Has anyone else had this sort of experience with sugar? I assume it's because I'm no longer adapted to having it, but I'm wondering if other people feel this way? Is there any link? Or is it just me? I know sugar generally has a strong affect on kids, so maybe this is its adult manifestation? Either way it was pretty awful and I won't be having that much sugar again any time soon!

  • #2
    Originally posted by fresa View Post
    So I had this semi-strange experience last night, and I feel the need to share.

    I went to a huge family gathering last night to celebrate my uncle's birthday. Now my extended family is not a small bunch, so there was food everywhere. And my grandmother, who is super sweet about understanding my eating habits, made a batch of salted dark chocolate almond bark. Yeah. I haven't had chocolate in a long time, so I thought I would have my 20% and eat some of that. I ended up eating a lot more than I intended, and I was completely wired. I was off the walls loud, dancing around, interrupting people, being majorly extroverted. Which I am not, normally. Everyone kept asking what was wrong with me, since I was acting so bizarre and everyone else was completely fine. It eventually wore off, but then a couple hours later I crashed. Hard. Nausea, headache, anxiety...it was awful. I then realized that both of these reactions are exactly the same as to when I have been drinking. Has anyone else had this sort of experience with sugar? I assume it's because I'm no longer adapted to having it, but I'm wondering if other people feel this way? Is there any link? Or is it just me? I know sugar generally has a strong affect on kids, so maybe this is its adult manifestation? Either way it was pretty awful and I won't be having that much sugar again any time soon!
    Sounds like a reasonable correlation to me!
    Earthy Mama's Journal

    "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food" ~ Hippocrates

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    • #3
      Sounds like you had a sugar high and crash! Little kids do this if they aren't exposed to sugar a lot. I certainly do!

      Of course the scientists will tell you a sugar high doesn't exist. Any teacher or stay-at-home mum knows it does. If you were eating chocolate, though, the high could be from the caffeine, too! Or both!

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      • #4
        Originally posted by fresa View Post
        It eventually wore off, but then a couple hours later I crashed. Hard. Nausea, headache, anxiety...it was awful. I then realized that both of these reactions are exactly the same as to when I have been drinking. Has anyone else had this sort of experience with sugar?
        They might not work in exactly the same way biochemically, but they seem in some way to be "coming from the same place".

        Hence Ogden Nash's line:

        Candy's dandy, but liquor's quicker
        Personally, I don't experience them in quite the same way. For me sugar is not much of a temptation -- I just don't care about it -- but a drink perennially is. Nevertheless, I'm pretty certain that they do pull some of the same strings.

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        • #5
          That sounds like sugar plus a major theobromine rush. That is the stuff that is kind of like caffeine in chocolate and is highly concentrated in dark chocolate. Some people are more sensitive to it than others.

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          • #6
            i am sure i have read that alcohol and sugar use the same pathways in the brain. i dont know how true this is as i can definitely sugar addict at times but i have never been that keen on alcohol.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by sarasue624 View Post
              Sounds like you had a sugar high and crash! Little kids do this if they aren't exposed to sugar a lot. I certainly do!

              Of course the scientists will tell you a sugar high doesn't exist. Any teacher or stay-at-home mum knows it does. If you were eating chocolate, though, the high could be from the caffeine, too! Or both!
              Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
              That sounds like sugar plus a major theobromine rush. That is the stuff that is kind of like caffeine in chocolate and is highly concentrated in dark chocolate. Some people are more sensitive to it than others.
              Huh, it really could be either one. I've never even heard of caffeine in chocolate before, believe it or not. I would've guessed it's the sugar, but caffeine would make a lot of sense too. I have a reputation for having a really strong reaction to both of them. My caffeine exposure is also pretty limited as I only drink green tea, but I do tend to get pretty jittery is I have too much of that. My best friend always makes fun of me for how strongly that sort of thing affects me, he says its like dealing with a child. It's hard to gauge which one though, I've never felt that way before but it's also been probably a year since I had that much of anything like it. But it's interesting to hear that it might be an individual sensitivity that I have, and not a general reaction. Definitely makes sense, but I never would've put it together. Just another thing to be sensitive too, I suppose. Ah well, one more reason not to eat it. Not that I needed one of those

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              • #8
                You might find this interesting:

                Theobromine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                  You might find this interesting:

                  Theobromine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
                  Very interesting, thank you!

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                  • #10
                    If you watch this (and it's well worth watching) Dr Lustig claims that sugar is processed in the body in the same way as alcohol - as a toxin.
                    The Paleo Strongwoman - A site dedicated to strength, and feeding strength.

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                    • #11
                      Oh yeah. I found out after I stopped eating junk food (not counting special occasions and this entire december..... Chocolate) that I had basically been drunk for years, which explained my poor behaviour. And the interesting thing is that different junk foods produce different effects. There are some that are like alcohol, some like meth, some like lsd, etc.

                      Skittles: Taste the rainbow indeed.
                      In all of the universe there is only one person with your exact charateristics. Just like there is only one person with everybody else's characteristics. Effectively, your uniqueness makes you pretty average.

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                      • #12
                        There is also a fair bit of caffeine iirc in the dark chocolate.
                        My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57916.html
                        When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

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                        • #13
                          I doubt it was the sugar. Dark chocolate isn't even a very high source of sugar.

                          I have noticed chocolate is a pretty strong stimulant for me. I drink coffee most days but chocolate is even more stimulating to me even though it has less caffeine. I can't eat chocolate before bed unfortunately. I would love to be able to drift off to sleep sucking on a few squares of dark chocolate.

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