(PRWEB) November 15, 2012
"Developing a strong sense of self-control is about more than gargling lemonade," says faith-based website, followme.org.
That statement came today in response to a recent study about how gargling sugary drinks can provide momentary boosts of self-control.
According to a Forbes Magazine report from November 8, researchers from the University of Georgia gathered a sample of 51 college students and asked them to perform two tasks scientifically known to chip away at a person's self-control.
In the first task, students examined a single page from a statistics textbook and then crossed out all of the 'E's on the page, according to the Forbes report. In the second task, students were shown a series of names of colors, flashed on a screen-- students were asked to identify the color of the text that appeared, the researchers explain in the published report.
As the students completed the tedious tasks, half of the students gargled lemonade sweetened with real sugar; the other half of the students gargled lemonade sweetened with artificial, non-sugar sweeteners.
The results? According to the journal report, students who rinsed with the sugary drink responded much more quickly to the self-control-crushing tasks. Simply bringing sugar into contact with one's tongue triggers the brain's motivational centers, Forbes reported.
“After this trial, it seems that glucose stimulates the simple carbohydrate sensors on the tongue. This, in turn, signals the motivational centers of the brain where our self-related goals are represented. These signals tell your body to pay attention,” UGA psychology professor Leonard Martin, co-author of the study, told Forbes.
“It doesn’t just crank up your energy, but it cranks up your personal investment in what you are doing. Clicking into the things that are important to you makes those self-related goals salient,” said Martin.
But is there more to self-control than a sugar-induced physiological response? The leaders of one faith-based website, followme.org, say that lasting self-control requires developing healthy spiritual and mental habits. Followme.org provides daily resources on self-control and other areas of personal growth.
"The Georgia study explains a practical way to get a short boost of motivation for a temporary task. But what do you do when your entire life feels drained of initiative and purpose due to an addiction or a recent tragedy? That requires a more holistic, spiritual approach: developing lasting habits of positive thought and mental self-control," said Pastor Jamie of followme.org.
The full results of the University of Georgia study are available in the article, "The Gargle Effect: Rinsing the Mouth With Glucose Enhances Self-Control," published on October 22, 2012 in Psychological Science.