Children’s Sugar Rush Hour

by Joseph Sahakian

Sugar, spice, and everything nice. But at the end of the day, you realize that, no, everything is not nice. The sugar market has been on an exponential rise ever since our ancestors had their first bite of a sugary pear after a long day of hunting for boars. The industry is projected to be near $89.244 billion in 2024 [1]. The success of the sugar industry is not based on the fact that sugar is sweet. Children’s sugar rush may not be in their control since there are some factors behind it.

Children’s Sugar Rush: Not Very Sweet Things You Need To Know

Multiple factors come into play behind that unexpected craving for cookies or a donut at 2 a.m. This irresistible desire for sugar bears so many reasons under it.  You might want to consider before rushing into anything. Have a look at these factors to explain your children’s sugar rush:


Sugar is the main fuel of our bodies [2]; the only reason we continue to be alive is that we are constantly breaking down sugar, or as scientists like to call it, glucose, into energy. Food is potential energy; energy is only released by breaking down the chemical bonds. But why sugar? Natural selection always tries to find the best answer to a specific issue. Out of all the available macronutrients, sugar turned out to be the fastest way to meet that urgent energy demand [3]. Mind you, fat gives double that energy, but it would take longer to access it.


It’s not just about energy; our reward system loves sugar. The reward system is a brain mechanism that reinforces positive behavior by releasing happy hormones [4]. It all started with an exhausted ancestor who found a ripe fruit on a tree; the snack was easy to find, light, and filled with energy. Her reward system shot up with joy with this lovely surprise, and long story short, that donut craving is calling again. But there’s a darker side to sugar; it is as addictive as cocaine and nicotine [5,6].

But the real issue here is moderation, rather than the lack of it; natural sugar is harmless in reasonable amounts. Processed sugar works in a vicious cycle: it spikes your blood sugar level, releasing insulin to bring it back down. Our brain interprets this as a state of emergency and rings the alarm to eat sugar to bring it back up. The entire process leaves us exhausted from the blood sugar rollercoaster, excluding the health complications that develop in the long run [7,8].

Cultural Conditioning:

Most of the behaviors we have today are habits and reactions formed during childhood. Those early years in our lives are the most impressionable and critical moments that set the tone for our adult selves [9]. A lollipop after a dentist’s appointment, chocolate for a good grade, cookies for when you’re sad, birthday cakes, glamorization of desserts on social media; we have equated sugar with comfort, pleasure, and reward of feeling good. It is no wonder that sugar addiction and obesity have become the leading causes of health complications, including diabetes and ADHD[9]. But the inconvenience of replacing the abstract notions of social and personal validation with substance is that it ends up consuming you.  

birthday cakes

Is There Any Way Out?

Sugar is indispensable. Yet, consumerism has found a loophole to turn this necessity into a lucrative opportunity. The real problem stems from when business people started exploiting our weak spot for sugar. To the point that almost every item in your local market has sugar in it, maybe even water one day… There’s no escape anymore from getting your daily fix if you are not willing to produce everything at your place from scratch.

If you or your kids have diabetes, or just go for healthy snacks, you can try these recipes.


Related Posts

Leave a Comment