Sugar: Health's Latest Public Enemy
About 15 years ago, Nicole Avena, a neuroscientist at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, noticed a lot of people talking about how they felt "addicted" to sugar. "There really wasn't any scientific evidence," she says. "There wasn't any carefully controlled or conducted studies on this." So, she joined a team that was starting a study—in rats, to begin with. The sugar-hooked rats' brains looked like drug addicts' brains. So in the past few years she's been working with human subjects, and finding similar things. People who show addiction-like behaviors towards sugar also show drug-addiction-like changes in their brain.
- Nicole Avena, PhD, Assistant Professor, Pharmacology and Systems Therapeutics, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai