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Demi Thu, Oct-08-20 10:00

Fructose and uric acid as drivers of a hyperactive foraging response
Fructose and uric acid as drivers of a hyperactive foraging response: A clue to behavioral disorders associated with impulsivity or mania?


Recent studies show that fructose is a unique nutrient that stimulates an innate survival pathway for many species that involves the foraging for food with storage of the energy as fat.

In Western Society the high intake of sugar has placed this survival pathway in overdrive, leading to an increase in obesity and diabetes.

Here we discuss how excessive fructose intake may lead to a hyperactive foraging response, and how this may contribute to various behavioral disorders including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, manic depression, aggressive behaviors, and other disorders.


Several behavioral disorders, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), bipolar disorder, and aggressive behaviors are linked with sugar intake and obesity. The reason(s) for this association has been unclear. Here we present a hypothesis supporting a role for fructose, a component of sugar and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), and uric acid (a fructose metabolite), in increasing the risk for these behavioral disorders. Recent studies have shown that the reason fructose intake is strongly associated with development of metabolic syndrome is that fructose intake activates an evolutionary-based survival pathway that stimulates foraging behavior and the storage of energy as fat. While modest intake may aid animals that would like to store fat as a protective response from food shortage or starvation, we propose that high intake of sugar and HFCS causes a hyperactive foraging response that stimulates craving, impulsivity, risk taking and aggression that increases the risk for ADHD, bipolar disease and aggressive behavior. High glycemic carbohydrates and salty foods may also contribute as they can be converted to fructose in the body. Some studies suggest uric acid produced during fructose metabolism may mediate some of these effects. Chronic stimulation of the pathway could lead to desensitization of hedonic responses and induce depression. In conclusion, a hyperactive foraging response driven by high glycemic carbohydrates and sugars may contribute to affective disorders.

Dodger Fri, Oct-09-20 08:50

Another reason to limit fruit.

Ms Arielle Fri, Oct-09-20 08:57

Having an ADHD child, this is nonsense.

teaser Fri, Oct-09-20 11:54

They're saying 'may contribute,' not 'this is it and without sugar, there would be no affective disorders.' It's a possible risk factor, not a necessary factor.

WereBear Fri, Oct-09-20 12:10

high glycemic carbohydrates and sugars may contribute to affective disorders

That much seems to be true.

Bob-a-rama Fri, Oct-09-20 14:03

From my non-scientifically proven observations about other wild omnivorous animals I notice this:

The local, native plants bear ripe fruit right before the starvation season (winter in the north, the dry season in the tropics).

And I notice wild animals gorging themselves on the sweet fruit and gaining weight. One example, fat bears are in the news, and it's autumn. They are carbing out before the starvation season. When they come out of hibernation they want protein and express the carnivorous side of their diet.

So I conclude this...

Those who had a 'sweet tooth' put on enough fat to survive the starvation season and passed on that gene. Those that did not didn't make it through and didn't get to pass on that gene.

Everything comes with a price. That sugar that used to get us through the starvation season does damage to our bodies. Insulin and sugar both burn us but that damage was less than starving to death before the spring (or the tropical rains)

So through millions of years of evolution, we have inherited that sweet tooth, but there is no starvation season in most industrialized countries anymore. To add to the problem, we can import fruit so we can have it all year long. And to make things even worse, we have fructose and sucrose injected into foods that don't naturally contain much, if any sugar.

We can eat all we want, pay that damage price, but there is no longer a benefit to do so. We take the damage but no longer need it for the gain.

We have to use our brains to deny our drives some times.


WereBear Tue, Oct-13-20 10:46

After months of barely seeing friends, we had a bit of a get-together, socially distanced outside on a friend's big roofed porch. It was during a mini-monsoon, but we just bundled up and laughed about the abundant ventilation.

I was asked about my health and told how good I looked, even with a Pandemic non-haircut. But my tales of pork rind griddle muffins and Meatza pizza with a sausage crust was looked at as the bizarre tactics it admittedly is.

Still, they've seen me very sick, and now they see me well. And that is all anyone needs to know.

That is what counts.

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