Increasingly, experts believe we can be truly addicted to sugar.

French scientists in Bordeaux reported that in animal trials, rats chose sugar over cocaine (even when they were addicted to cocaine), and speculated that no mammals’ sweet receptors are naturally adapted to the high concentrations of sweet tastes on offer in modern times.

Care Fertility has applied for an HFEA licence using the egg-precursor and mitochondrial-transfer technology developed by Ova Science, a Boston-based company set up by fertility scientists in the United States.

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They worried, in a paper published in 2007, that the intense stimulation of these receptors by our typical 21st-century sugar-rich diets must generate a supra-normal reward signal in the brain, with the potential to override self-control mechanisms and thus to lead to addiction. Around the world, a growing body of expert opinion – the 'No Sugar’ movement – is leading a global fightback and warning that our sweet habit is completely out of control, leaving a nasty taste in the mouth of the body public.

Sugar, whether added to food by you or the manufacturer, is the greatest threat to human health, bar none, they say.

And unless we wise up and quit en masse, we don’t just risk personal obesity and disease, but national bankruptcy and collapse as the toll our ill health takes on our countries’ economies threatens to destabilise the modern world.

The movement is led by Robert Lustig, professor of paediatric endocrinology at University of California, San Francisco, author of Fat Chance: The Bitter Truth About Sugar, numerous scientific and press articles, and presenter of “Sugar: the Bitter Truth”, a You Tube clip viewed more than 3,300,000 times.

Thousands of women in their 30s and 40s, as well as younger women with fertility problems, could benefit from the technique which involves sucking out the mitochondria “power packs” from immature stem cells found in the ovary and injecting them into the mature egg cells or oocytes used in IVF. The chances of a successful IVF pregnancy are about 32 per cent for women under 35, about 21 per cent for women aged 38 to 39, five per cent for women aged 43 to 44 and less than two per cent for woman aged over 44.

The proponents of the technique argue that the failure of a fertilised egg to develop into a viable early embryo that can be transferred into the womb is often due to the decrepit nature of the egg’s ageing mitochondria – which can be remedied by adding fresher ones from so-called egg-precursor cells in the ovary.

So ingrained is our desire that even writing about sugar now is sending my salivary glands into overdrive as my brain reacts to the very thought of it, whizzing neurotransmitters around to prepare my body for some serious glucose action.

Perhaps you, while reading this, are reaching – almost unwittingly – for a chocolate Hobnob? It seems that our desire to load up with sugar regularly may not be the cheeky reward-cum-energy boost we think it is.

But 'No Sugar’ proponents also include Australian writer David Gillespie, author of Sweet Poison and the new Sweet Poison Quit Plan, just out in the UK, as well as actress Gwyneth Paltrow, who reveals in her new cookbook It’s All Good that her family are not permitted to eat any refined carbs (let alone sugar), and even Andy Burnham, the Opposition Health Secretary, who called in January for high-sugar children’s foods such as Frosties and Sugar Puffs to be banned by politicians.

Lustig leads the field with his warning that not all calories are equal, because not all monosaccharides – the simplest forms of sugar, the building blocks of all carbohydrates – are equal.

Nevertheless, Simon Fishel, professor of human reproduction and founder of Care Fertility in Nottingham, said there is evidence that injecting additional mitochondria into an IVF egg when it is fertilised with sperm improves the chances of the fertilised egg developing into a healthy early embryo.