Your gaze is drawn to it. Your heart jumps of joy. Your mouth starts watering. You look around you, is the coast clear? Quick as light, you stealthily snatch one of the table and you put it in your mouth. For a brief moment guilt assails you, you cannot resist. But soon the tingling sensation of sweet invasion takes over your body. That wonderful feeling that caresses your tongue and to which your body responds with euphoria…. Recognizable? Sweets are a vice that many people unknowingly are addicted to. The fact that it is so hard to stay away from it already indicates how addictive it is. So is it a bad thing to have too much sugar? You bet and lets take a look at all the different way sugar is not good for you.
Why is sugar bad for you?
To much sugar has devastating effects on your body. For example, symptoms like fatigue, lowers your immunity, weight gain and aging faster have been attributed to the use of sugar. And let us not forget the damage sugar does to your teeth. To much sugar is an assault on your body. Manuel Venderbos a Dutch television host of RTL-programma Galileo, explored the effects of sugar for a news editorial feature. He ate nealry one kilo of sugar per day for one whole month. He had to stop early with the experiment because of the danger to his health. Manuel found his blood sugar level was similar to that of a diabetes patient not on medication. In short, there is such a thing as to much sugar.
Sugar fuels the cells in our brains and the brain responds to sugar as a reward. The eating of sugary sweets and cabohydrates re-enforce the reward trigger and make it difficult to break the bad habit. Carbohydrates such as breads, chips and pasta are also sugars that are broken down in to glucose into your blood stream. Your blood sugar level spikes when eating high carb foods. Next your body needs to move the glucose into the blood stream for energy and to do this it needs insulin. Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas . When the insluin is released a sudden drop in blood sugar levels leaves you feeling tired, down or moody. And the cycle for craving sugar to pick you back up begins again.
Why are we so fond of sweets? That is partly due to the influence of sugar on your brains because of the creation of dopamine. This substance gives you a nice and happy feeling which makes you yearn for sweets again and again, also called sugar craving. Thus is the addictive nature of sugar.
The tricky part in cutting down on sugars is that it is used in so many products. Manufacturers add it to optimize the taste of their products. It’s obvious when it’s added to sodas, candy and cookies but it is not obvious when we read ingredients that we never heard of before. Regular cooking ingredients and sauces contain syrups and sugars such as ketchup, pickles, bread, BBQ sauce, meats and spices readymade. Even health drinks are loaded with sweeteners. A glass of fruit juice is just as unhealthy as a glass of cola. Lowering your intake starts with being label conscious and reading ingredients regularly and compare brands. Several manufacures do differeciate themselves by lowering sugar, salts and gluten in their products. Sugars are often listed under different names on labels and even under an E-number (e.g., Aspartame: E-951). There are 56 different names for sugar. Daistatic malt, agave nectar,maltose, dextrose and rice syrup are just a few of the other names of sweeteners.
It is important to know that there are different types of sweeteners. The worst sugars that you really should avoid are refined natural sweeteners: white sugar (sucrose), corn syrup and maltodextrins. But you should also immediately remove (semi-) synthetic sweeteners such as Aspartame, Sucralose and Sorbitol from your menu. Sweet subsititutes like Aspartame act as neurotransmitters in the brain. Anytime you over load the balance of the bodys normal nueral transmitters you kill certain nuerons by allowing the inundation of calcium. This agitates and promotes free radicals that kill brain cells. Aspartame contains methanol, which is subsequently metabolized into formaldehyde.
Do you, like many of us, have a sweet tooth and are unwilling or unable to banish sweets from your life? Do not worry, there are good alternatives! Good sugar substitutes are: agave syrup, stevia, grain syrups, maple syrup and natural honey (not a commercial honey which contains added sugar). These are natural unrefined sweeteners. But please do realize that sweets (of whatever origin) are still bad for your health. Always use sugar sparingly.
To reduce your sugar intake, it is important to eat as naturally as possible, by this we mean non- processed products. You will also notice that as you eat less sugar or no sugar at all, your need for sweets will decrease. That makes it easier to maintain a sugar-free diet. And to replace your ‘sugar high’ you can just go out for a run, this will also release substances making you feel good enabling you to leave the sweeteners for what they are. Away with sugars; again pure nature proves to be the best choice for your health! No form of sugar is good for you. Except maybe a sugar daddy.