On some level most of us know that sugar is not healthy. Do you really know how devastating sugar is? About 100 years ago the average yearly intake of sugar was only about four pounds per person a year. Today the average American consumes 150-170 pound of sugar per person a year! Reducing one’s sugar consumption is challenging since it is highly addictive. Eliminating sugar too fast can cause withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, mood swings, depression, fatigue, and cravings.
The research of Alfred Lopez, in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Volume 18, pointed to sugar as being a significant player in the development of heart disease. Recent information which attempts to relate a high intake of sugar in the diet to a high incidence of ischemic heart disease has been reviewed.
Sugar causes an increase in the adhesiveness of the blood platelets, which may be the reason for its role in heart disease. Sugar is also implicated as a causative factor in Type II Diabetes, osteoporosis, kidney disease, liver disease, obesity, and depression. Sugar may contribute to the growth of cancerous tumors; cancer cells seem to love sugar. Every tablespoon of sugar depresses the immune system for 3-4 hours. There are 12 tablespoons of sugar in one can of soda, so that means your immune system is suppressed for 36-48 hours just by consuming a 12 oz can of soda.
Sugar is far more fattening for most people than fat. The worst type of sugar is fructose, often found as high-fructose corn syrup which is now everywhere in processed foods including soft drinks, baked goods, fruit juices and ketchup. Kids are particularly vulnerable – the foods they love are filled with this stuff, as a result of consuming these foods they are becoming obese and developing Type II Diabetes at an alarming rate. High-fructose corn syrup is even an ingredient in those touted-as-healthy low-calorie frozen dinners! Read labels carefully. Anything that ends in “ose” is a form of sugar, such as glucose, sucrose, fructose, maltose, lactose, dextrose, galactose etc. Also watch for “monosaccharides” or “disaccharides”, which are also fancy names for sugar.
Almost all sugar on the market is highly processed, and as such the nutrient-dense molasses of the sugar-cane plant has been stripped away. The only sugar on the market that is a whole food is from Brazil, and is called Rapadura which literally means, “unseparated sugar”. If you must use sugar, some alternatives are: “Sucanat”, “Turbinado”, or “Raw Sugar”. Just remember sugar is sugar, so consume in moderation. To wean yourself off sugar, you may find it helpful to take a gram or two a day of omega 3 fish oils, to reduce the cravings. Increasing the healthy fats helps with sugar cravings as well – try coconut oil, palm oil and whole fat foods.
Let me help you get over your sugar cravings, so you can lose weight!
“To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art”