“Sugar Coma”- Glucose ingestion leads to worse cognitive performance
Scientists in New Zealand have found preliminary evidence that simple sugars like glucose can impair cognitive performance. Their double-blind, placebo-controlled study found that glucose-containing sweeteners were linked to reduced attention and response times.
The research was recently published online in the scientific journal Physiology & Behavior.
In the latest study, 49 individuals consumed sweetened drinks containing either glucose, sucrose (table sugar), fructose (fruit sugar), or sucralose (an artificial sweetener) before completing three cognitive tests. The three tests consisted of a simple response time task, a measure of arithmetic processing, and the Stroop task.
The researchers also measured the participants’ blood glucose levels during the testing.They found that participants who had consumed glucose or sucrose tended to perform worse on the cognitive tests than those who had consumed fructose or sucralose. The human body converts sucrose into glucose and fructose. But unlike glucose, fructose does not traverse the blood-brain barrier.
“Our study suggests that the ‘sugar coma’ – with regards to glucose – is indeed a real phenomenon, where levels of attention seem to decline after consumption of glucose-containing sugar,” Peng t.