Monday , August 2 2021

An abundant adjustment of the brain to less sugar?

As a computer game can help you lose weight

In Germany and many other countries, too much sugar is consumed. The German Association of Nutrition recommends that with an average consumption of 2000 calories, only a maximum of 50 grams of sugar should come. This maximum value has already been exceeded if you drink half a liter of coke. Sugar is hiding everywhere. Often consumers do not even know how much sugar is in the purchased food. The new computer game now needs to help reach healthier foods while they shop.

Researchers at the College of Arts and Sciences at Drexel University are exploring a new way to counter the growing number of overweight people. As in Germany, the American population spends too much sugar, thus laying the foundation for serious diseases such as obesity, cancer, diabetes and heart disease. The team around psychology professor Evan Foreman has now developed and tested a computer game that helps consumers make healthier shopping decisions. The team recently presented the results in Journal of Behavioral Medicine.

In a computer game developed by psychologists, players need to go through a virtual supermarket and get points for healthy procurement. In this way, the brain should be trained to not resort to unhealthy foods in a real situation. (Image: Eisenhans /

The brain can be trained to abstain from sugar

According to the results of the study, the computer game can actually be used to train its players to eat less sugar and, consequently, reduce weight and improve health. The game is designed to inhibit stimulation in a supermarket to grab unhealthy and heavily-fed dishes.

How is it played?

In the game, players move as fast as they can through a virtual supermarket in order to put healthy food in the shopping cart. There are points for healthy food and an unhealthy point of refusal. The game can also be personalized so that players face particularly difficult temptations, as they do not grab their favorite candies.

Course of the study

In order to test the effect of the game, 109 overweight participants were educated at the Workshop on the unhealthy effects of high sugar intake. "The workshop has helped participants in strategies for a sugar-free diet," Forman said in a statement on information on the findings of the study. Foreman's training can help develop an understanding of a healthy diet, but the impulse to respond to sweet remains remains. This can help in the computer game.


As part of the study, participants had to play the game daily for several minutes on the computer for six weeks, then once a week for two weeks. More than half of the participants lost more than three percent of their body weight within eight weeks. The majority of the respondents said that playing has helped them and that they would like to continue the training, if available. According to the results of the study, men seem to be more active on this concept than women.

He equally trains the brain

As the professor of psychology says, such cognitive training games have already shown good results in other areas. For example, a similar project has shown that the game can help quit smoking. Theoretically, the principle can apply to all unhealthy habits, said Forman.

The sugar content of non-alcoholic beverages is too high

More than every second so-called. "soft drink" is überzuckert. And this despite the fact that many manufacturers and distributors have announced that they will reduce the content of sugar in their products.
This is the result of a comprehensive market study presented by the Foodwatch Consumer Organization in Berlin.

As the organization says in the communication, 345 out of 600 drinks samples (58 percent) contain more than five grams of sugar per 100 milliliters – that's more than four sugar cubes of 250 milliliters glass. (Vb)

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