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General Practice 2023

Áwater with açúcar helps you calm down?

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Áwater with açúcar helps you calm down?
Áwater with açúcar helps you calm down?

It is common that in situations of stress and anxiety, a glass of sugar water is offered in an attempt to make the person calm down and feel better. However, there are no scientific studies that prove this effect, suggesting that the calming effect is due to the placebo effect, that is, the person becomes calmer because they believe they will be calmer when drinking sugar water.

Therefore, in order to relax and feel calmer, it is important for the person to practice physical activity, sleep well or do meditation, as this way it is possible to relieve the symptoms of stress and anxiety in a natural and effective way.

Water with sugar really calms you down?

The idea that sugar water helps to calm down is due to the fact that sugar stimulates the production of serotonin, which is the hormone responsible for the feeling of well-being and thus could produce a calming effect. This effect can also be explained by the fact that sugar is able to decrease the levels of circulating cortisol, which is the hormone related to stress.

However, it is also known that sugar is a source of energy for the body, because when metabolized it gives rise to glucose and fructose, which enter the cells and guarantee the energy needed for the body to function properly. In this way, sugar would not have a relaxing action, on the contrary, it would have a stimulating action.

However, in very stressful situations, there is a lot of adrenaline production and consequent increase in energy expenditure, in addition to a high level of circulating cortisol. Therefore, in these situations, the stimulating effect of sugar may not be perceived, on the contrary, the relaxing effect could be associated with sugar water, since this substance is being used by the body in an attempt to restore lost energy.

Due to the lack of studies that verify the effects of sugar water, it is considered that its consumption has a placebo effect, that is, that the calming effect is psychological: the person becomes calmer because he believes he will become more calm with the consumption of sugar water, and the relaxing effect is not necessarily related to sugar.

How to relax

As the use of sugar water to relax has no scientifically proven effect, it is recommended that natural strategies be adopted that are able to decrease cortisol levels and increase serotonin concentration to ensure a greater feeling of well-being and more tranquility. Some options to help you relax are:

  • Practice physical activities, as it helps to reduce the amount of cortisol produced during the day, helping to relax;
  • Sleep well, because in this way it is possible to rest the mind and relax for the next day, in addition to favoring the production of serotonin, being necessary for sleep to happen in a dark environment without external stimuli;
  • Do meditation, since during meditation the person can have more concentration and focus on positive situations, promoting relaxation;
  • Take relaxing teas, such as valerian, lemon balm or chamomile, for example, at least 30 minutes before bed to help calm and relaxing.

It is also important to take time for yourself, avoiding thinking about the origin of stress and anxiety, just focusing on what is important for your own well-being. Discover other options to calm the mind.

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