So where is this sweet tooth coming from?
Monday, January 22, 2018
All my life I have preferred salty potato chips and french fries to sweets and chocolate.
I am a salt-aholic, not a choc-aholic. I would much rather have a large order of french fries, served with vinegar and salt than a piece of cake or ice cream.
In fact, if I am hungry and eat something sweet, it only makes me hungrier.
But recently, I find that I am craving sweets more often. And I decided to find out if this was a common phenomenon as we age. (In the interest of full disclosure here, I am 72.) So I went onto the World Wide Web to see what I could find out.
Yes, according to what I found on the internet, it seems that a lot of people develop a sweet tooth with ageing.
Most of the articles I read were written by caregivers, and some were found in newspapers or online blogs. There were not many that originated from medical sources.
These various pieces speculated that the sweet tooth was from any number of factors:
--hormones: after menopause, the hormones bring on a sweet tooth
--taste buds: they diminish with age, and sweetness remains a stronger taste than salt, so seniors prefer sweets.
--reduction in a sense of smell: also reduces our ability to taste food. Sweet tastes are stronger than salty taste, so they are preferred.
--attitude: some proposed that seniors feel they have made it to old age, so now they are entitled to eat whatever they want to eat.
--onset of disease: developing a sweet tooth can be a symptom of the onset of diseases like Parkinson's or Alzheimer's.
For me, I think it is a holdover from all the sweets I ate over the holidays. Whenever I overeat sweets, it takes me a while to come down again to a regular diet. The more sweets I eat, the more I want to eat them.
It is very much like an addiction. I have to 'get off' sweets and get back to normal.
I do know that I always feel so much better when I restrict sweets in my diet.
So I am in the process of doing that again.