The effect of a low refined and added sugar diet on mood and fatigue levels.
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Research has suggested a diet low in sugar has mixed effects on mood state, mental wellbeing, energy levels, tiredness, fatigue and health risks (Hattersley et al., 2009; Liebman, 2010; Ebbeling et al., 2012; Hancocks 2014). The purpose of this investigation is to measure the effects of a low sugar diet on mood, energy, tiredness and fatigue. 12 participants (M = 23.5, SD = 8.14), were asked to record a three week food diary. All participants completed a one week food diary as familiarisation to the procedure. Participants were randomly divided into groups to counterbalance the investigation. Group one followed a low refined and added sugar diet in week two, and consumed their normal diet in week three. Group two completed the reverse pattern of dieting. The low sugar diet instructed participants to minimise their intake of; processed foods, added and refined sugars. Records of daily food intake and twice daily mood (PAAS; Lox et al., 2000) were obtained over the study period. Participants experienced negative mood state, reduced energy, increased tiredness and fatigue on the low sugar diet. The practical implications of this study suggest that individual who attempt sugar restriction tend to have lower mood and fatigue. This may be one reason for the relapse rate on diets of this type are high, however longer studies have shown contrasting evidence.
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