Sugar and its byproducts are not the healthiest things to consume but many of us know this and do not really care because, it’s “hard to resist all that sweeteness”. But is it really so hard when your life is at stake?
The body indeed needs glucose to function and this article is mainly concerned about added or free sugars not sugar that is naturally found in foods like fruits and milk or healthy starchy foods like whole grains.
Daily consumption of soda, candy bars, biscuits, chocolates, sweetened and coated cereals etc have pretty negative health outcomes. A can of Cola for example, has up to 9 or more cubes of sugar which is above the daily recommended sugar limit for adults. So how much sugar do adults and children need per day? Here’s a guide written by the NHS UK.
We’ve listed a few eye-opening reasons why added sugar is so harmful to your body. You’ll definitely consider cutting it off after reading the following facts:
Most people like to indulge in foods that quickly affect their blood sugar but in the long run, it contributes a greater risk of obesity, heart disease and diabetes. An average soft drink has about 13 cubes of sugar(54grams). The effects are often a result of added sugars working in your body, so be sure to read those nutrition labels.
While you probably know that sugars can affect your body composition, they can also mess with your skin by contributing to wrinkles and sagging. After it hits your bloodstream, it attaches to proteins. The mix of these proteins with sugar causes the skin to lose elasticity and this leads to premature ageing.
With all the other life threatening effects of sugar, we sometimes forget the most basic cosmetic and health damage it does. When it sits on your teeth, it causes decay more efficiently than any other food. It’s important to brush your teeth at least twice a day to stop sugars from fuelling plaque and bacteria.
When we’re under stress, our bodies immediately kick into fight-or-flight mode, releasing large amounts of hormones. Surprisingly, the body has the same chemical response when blood sugar is low. After you eat a sweet snack, stress hormones begin to compensate for the crash by raising your blood sugar. The result? Unexplained anxiousness, irritability, and even shakiness. The world is already so stressful, why add it to it?
Studies have shown that sugar can interfere with the way your body fights disease. Bacteria and yeast feed on sugar, so excess glucose in the body causes these organisms to build up and cause infections. According to askdrsears.com, just eight tablespoons of sugar, or 2 1/2, 12-ounce cans of soda, reduces your immune system’s ability to fight germs by 40%.
The Way Foward: We challenge you to go on a no-added sugar diet for 2 weeks and take note of how your body feels. Work with your doctor or nutritionist to come up with a long-term plan for cutting added sugars off your diet or putting your total intake in line with your health. Always check labels and nutrition facts when shopping to be guided on what you are putting into your body or those of your loved ones, especially children.