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High Sugar Intake & The Dangers

High Sugar Intake & The Dangers

The standard American diet may be leading people’s health into jeopardy. Items in your pantry may be the main culprit to the dilemma. Commonly in today’s society, people are pinching pennies to make ends meet and trying to crunch time in their busy schedule with preparing meals. Often people are pulling foods off the shelves at grocery stores that are pre-packaged meals, such as freezer food or boxed dinners. The pre-packaged meals make it so meal preparation time can be at a minimal. People are always looking for ways to make meals easy and affordable, but the down side to buying freezer food or boxed dinners may lead to threatening factors impeding someones health.

Toxic Additives: Seems like sugar is lurking everywhere and if you start to read your food labels, you’ll see that most foods are loaded with several spoonfuls of sugar. Pre-packaged meals or boxed dinners are a great example of items that contain unnatural ingredients and toxic additives. The purpose of additives is to prolong its shelf life and add flavoring. Highly processed foods encompass a large amount of refined sugars, which can be highly addictive. Terms often used for sugar are; sucrose, glucose, fructose, maltose dextrose, lactose, high fructose corn syrup, molasses, honey, evaporated cane juice, fruit juice concentrates, cane crystals and corn sweetener all stipulate existence of refined sugars.

Possible Health Risks To Public Health: Americans consume 10 times more refined sugar than all the 2,600 food additives combined with the exception of salt. There is not nutritional value to sugar and the calorie intake is calculated differently. Medical experts have linked high sugar intake as a lead contributor to obesity in children and adults. In 2015 Dietary guidelines for Americans recommended that children get no more than 10 percent of their total calories per day from added sugar which is difficult for most parents to calculate. (1) Added sugar is fructose which can overload your liver or progress into further health problems such as alcoholic fatty liver disease. High cholesterol is another huge risk as it can lead to Heart Disease (including Coronary Heart Disease, Hypertension, and Stroke) remains to be the No. 1 cause of death in the US. (2) Also, stroke is known to be highly ranked as a health risk in serious long-term disability in the US.

Why Is Sugar So Harmful? Sugar can cause blood sugar to spike resulting in an inflammatory response, hormone imbalance, or high blood pressure. Sugar is known to cause insulin resistance, a stepping stone to metabolic syndrome and diabetes. The insulin resistance can progress into type ll diabetes. Insulin is an important hormone in the body allowing glucose (blood sugar) to enter cells from the bloodstream and tells the cells to start burning glucose instead of fat. Having too much glucose in the blood is very harmful and one of the reasons for complications of diabetes, like blindness.

Biochemistry Of Food Intake & Energy Expenditure: When you analyze fructose (common table sugar) at the microscopic level to see what it does in the cell, we see that chronic fructose exposure (or constantly eating sugar) is the same in the body as chronic alcohol exposure. That means that when your body takes in sugar it literally treats it like a poison. It goes straight to the liver, cannot be digested anywhere else, gets turned into a lot of fat and waste products, causes cirrhosis and fatty deposits in the liver, and increased LDL (bad cholesterol) levels in your blood stream that build fatty plaques. In addition to all of this, the sugar molecule does not activate the signals inside your body that tells your body it’s had enough.

How Come We Cant Become Lectin Stable? The body produces lectin, which is a hormone in brain that tells you your body has eaten enough. In the 1980’s, AHA again reviewed the science and revised its recommendation to limit fat to less than 30% of calories and reduce saturated fat to less than 10% of calories. The Association continued to recommend ≤10% of calories from polyunsaturated fats. (3) The genetic pool has not changed in the last 20 years but the environment has. Sugar has unique fat promoting effects, as body mass index in adults increased over the last 20 years. Changes in body weight are expected when the micronutrients composition of the diet is altered, even when the energy content of the diet is held constant. This is where energy intake is to be considered, as people are consuming more carbs than they used to. The equation of biochemical forces that drive energy storage, energy can fluctuate; how many calories you consume vs how many you burn up.

Sugar Adds Stress On The Body: High sugar diets can add stress on the heart and blood circulation. When blood sugar is raised it can cause inflammatory response and escalate unhealthy body symptoms like a domino effect. When blood sugar is increased it causes the body to generate more free radicals. Destructive molecules that channel through the body damaging cells, free radicals stimulate the immune response, which can inflame the lining of the blood vessels leading to the heart.

Robert H. Lustig, MD Speech – 30 Years Based On Clinical Research & Eliminating Sugar From Your Diet

Healthy Tips To Cut Back On Sugar Intake:

  • Read food labels and track sugar intake
  • Know how to distinguish other names or terms used for sugar
  • Eat more veggies and natural fruits
  • Do not eliminate sugar completely (cut down slowly)
  • Consume healthy fats like (avocado, nuts, seeds, olive oil) as it helps decrease cravings for sugar
  • Never use fake sugar
  • Use alternative flavors for sweetener like (allspice, anise, cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla, carob, or nutmeg)
  • Cut back on drinking soda or juice
  • Sweet tooth? Eat dark chocolate

References:

(1) Dawn Thorpe Jarvis, M.S., R.D., L.D., (16 Nov. 2017). “Garden of Life” ®Senior Director of Nutrition Science & Educational Content. Extraordinary Health Vol. 13

(2) Unknown Author. (16 Nov. 2017). “How to Eliminate Refined Sugars.” Healthy Eating | SF Gate, Web.

(3) “50 Years of American Heart Association Dietary Fats Recommendations.”Http://www.heart.org, pp. 1–18.,Web.

Sources:

“10 Reasons Why Sugar Is Bad For You.” Healthline, Healthline Media, Web.

Christensen, Jen. (16 Nov. 2017). “What’s the No. 1 Killer of Americans?” CNN, Cable News Network, Web.

Cox, Lauren. (8 Mar. 2012). “Why Is Too Much Sugar Bad for You?” LiveScience, Purch, Web.

Dawn Thorpe Jarvis, M.S., R.D., L.D., (16 Nov. 2017). “Garden of Life” ®Senior Director of Nutrition Science & Educational Content. Extraordinary Health Vol. 13

Unknown Author. (16 Nov. 2017). “How to Eliminate Refined Sugars.” Healthy Eating | SF Gate, Web.

Unknown Author. (16 Nov. 2017). “The Largest Killer of Americans.” The New American Revolutionary, Robert H. Lustig, MD, Web.

Healthy Living,

Jaclyn Rae