Excess Sugar Affects Your Health
Tips to Enjoy it but Not Abuse it!
There is No Question That Excess Sugar Affects Your Health Adversely
Before we enjoy the lovely Valentine’s Day sweet treats, let’s take the time to reflect on the damaging effects of excess sugar in our diets.
Did you know the average American eats 150 to 170 pounds of refined sugars a year? Sounds incredible, right? But it’s true. Most of the processed foods we consume have large amounts of added sugar, so you may think your sugar consumption is low when in fact, it’s not.
How Excess Sugar Affects Your Health
You probably know that sugar can lead to tooth decay and weight gain, but that is not the extent of how dangerous eating too much sugar can be for us.
It Destabilizes Your Blood Sugar Levels
Glucose is a simple sugar in our blood. While our bodies need glucose as a quick fuel source, too much can cause havoc in our system. When we overeat sugar, our blood glucose levels spike and cause headaches, mood swings, fatigue, and cravings creating a vicious cycle.
It Increases Your Risk of Developing a Chronic Illness
Diets high in refined sugars increase your risk for:
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Some types of Cancer
- High Blood Pressure
- Heart Disease
- Atherosclerosis – thickening or hardening of the arteries caused by plaque buildup
Sugar can severely affect your heart health; in a study spanning 15 years, researchers found that people who consumed high amounts of added sugar have a higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease than those who eat lower amounts of sugar.
It Weakens Your Immune System
Bacteria love to feast on sugar, so when you overeat it, you are essentially feeding the bacteria and allowing them to multiply within your organism. Unfortunately, this can send your immune system into overdrive, eventually depleting it and opening the door to potential infections.
It Can Cause Acne
When our blood sugar spikes after overeating sugar, our bodies are forced to produce more insulin to try and regulate our blood glucose. Too much insulin can increase androgen- sex hormones- secretion, oil production, and inflammation, all of which contribute to acne.
It Can Make You Look Older
Once in our bloodstream, sugar bonds with proteins creating a compound known as Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs).
AGEs can damage collagen and elastin in our skin, causing it to lose firmness and therefore making us look older.
A study found that women who eat more refined carbs developed a more wrinkled appearance than those on a low-carb diet.
It Increases Cellular Aging
Telomeres are structures that protect chromosomes from deteriorating. As we age, telomeres become shorter, allowing cells to age faster or malfunction.
Diets high in sugar accelerate telomere shortening, which means increased amounts of sugar in our diets are making us older.
Foods With Hidden Sugar to Avoid
- Breakfast Cereals
- Flavored Yogurt
- Sauces and marinades – Ketchup, BBQ sauce, pasta sauce
- Granola Bars
- Salad Dressings
- Carbonated drinks and fruit juices
- Packages fruits
- Bottled Flavored tea
- No sugar added foods
- Premade Smoothies
- Alcohol mixers
- Dried fruit
- Flavored coffee
- Non-dairy milk – soy, almond, cashew, rice milk
- Bottled flavored water
- Gummy vitamins
- Sports drinks
- Some Jerky – honey mustard, BBQ
- Energy and protein bars
- Premade soups
Our customized weight loss programs can help you identify the hidden sugars in your diet so you can lose weight and gain health.