Today I drank a low fat chocolate milkshake inside an FRMI machine. My brain lit up like a Christmas tree in the exact same reward centres as nicotine, cocaine and sex. (I did not have sex in the machine to prove it though, it was far too cramped a space and my lady’s pregnant bump would never have fitted if she was here).
Interestingly, my brain even lit up when I was just shown a picture of the milkshake.
This morning was a real challenge. I had to fast from 10pm last night til 11am this morning so that we could see the full effects of sugar on the 2 million dollar MRI unit which I am positive doubles as a time machine when civilians aren’t around.
The fasting really knocked me though and the rumbles plus craving combination had me resembling a man sized snapping turtle ready to take down any unsuspecting Yankee Doodle dandy who crossed my path. Fortunately I made it to the clinic unscathed and when that sweet milky nectar hit my tongue from a very nipple like feeding apparatus, I was 5 days old again and suckling from the teet of my doting mother. As I lay entombed by this whirring technological science porn device, I had a flash of understanding of a potential effect of sugar. Maybe there is an association with this nascent time in our lives when we were cared for, deeply loved and fed the sweet colostrum. I actually had a tear of relief and euphoria when the first trickle arrived, such was the level of my need for the hit. What if on some level, sugar now, be it in a can or in a piece of pie is a reminder of earlier memories and a connection to love? I am meeting a woman who has written about this in a few days, these musings will be raised.
After an hour in the proton coalescing chamber, I had a hunger pain that I have never felt before. I limped to the campus cafe hunched over like an old man whose zimmer frame had just been stolen and ordered a blueberry yoghurt muffin, a bean and egg wrap and a bottle of OJ. It took a while for my dear body to forgive me but it began the appropriate acidic breakdowns and soon all was right again. The session yielded me 22 teaspoons.
I returned and interviewed a 46 year old professor who rides a skateboard to work. My favorite line was ” when mice are fed sugar and cocaine, the mice keep coming back for the sugar”. (You have to feel for mice sometimes, humans feeding them cocaine. I hope they at least build them a little nightclub and let them just talk heaps about nothing to each other).
I had a glass of lemon cordial during the interview. It had 9 teaspoons.
I then talked to another lovely professor who has just completed a really interesting study. They took 50 kids and put them in the scanner to measure their brains while they watched television. They then placed carefully chosen commercials at selected intervals. Some were for cars or phones and others were for sweet and fatty foods. The kid’s brains all lit up at the food commercials and scariest of all, when the kids came back a year later, all of the kids who’s brains had lit up the most had all put on large amounts of weight. This professor felt very strongly about regulating commercials on all media devices and had a strong message for parents about monitoring what ads appear on television when the child is watching. They are clearly having powerful subliminal effects.
I have just had a dinner of a mushroom soup with bread and a chai latte. An odd pairing I know but it got me another 9 to get me over the line.
It has been a great day and this sugar on the reward centre is a big point I think. It made me look at 711’s in a whole new light and how easily we can get that feeling of reward without doing a bloody thing except popping the top of an aluminium can. It also made me think how easily it can be peddled to the vulnerable.