• Carl Weston

SUGAR - The Demon food to avoid at all cost!

Everyone who knows me knows that I love fruit pie. They'll also know that I LOVE FAT (healthy fats from real sources and organic), However I strongly dislike Sugar even though I have a sweet tooth. But the damage sugar does to the human body is so much worse for you than what fat does or any other food or drug. But to all my clients and friends the one thing I really try and do is to advise everyone to avoid sugar as much as you can! (practically impossible to do 100%).

The hard part about this is that it is in absolutely everything that is processed. From milk to pasta sauce, to processed meats and breads and of course all of your sweet treats. 

The other bad part is the food industry will try its hardest to hide it from you by re branding and naming it something entirely different. Be smart, keep reading and again, its just my option make your own. Anyway keep reading and here is some easy to understand info on sugar.

1 : What are sugars?

Sugars are a class of carbohydrates and thus one source of food energy. Carbohydrates can be divided into 3 different groups, namely: sugars; oligosaccharides and polysaccharides.

Sugars can be further divided into 3 classes: monosaccharides; disaccharides and polyols.

Monosaccharides are single unit sugars. Those commonly found in food are:

Glucose (often called blood sugar when talking about blood glucose)

Fructose (one of the main sugars found in fruit – the others are sucrose and glucose)

Galactose (found in milk)

Disaccharides consist of two monosaccharides linked together. Those commonly found are:

sucrose (table sugar) = glucose + fructoselactose (milk sugar) = glucose + galactosemaltose (malt sugar) = glucose + glucose

References to "sugar" usually mean sucrose or table sugar, while references to "sugars" means any combination of mono-, di- and oligosaccharides.

Polyols are low calorie sugar replacers with a clean, sweet taste and are approved for human use all over the world. They are included in a variety of foods we eat every day. Specific polyols include: erythritol, hydrogenated starch hydrolysates, isomalt, lactitol, maltitol, mannitol, sorbitol and xylitol

Here are 56 names that sugar comes under -Barley malt, Barbados sugar, Beet sugar, Brown sugar, Buttered syrup, Cane juice, Cane sugar, CaramelCorn syrup, Corn syrup solids, Confectioner’s sugar, Carob syrup, Castor sugar, Date sugar, Dehydrated cane juice, Demerara sugar, Dextran, Dextrose, Diastatic malt, Diatase, Ethyl maltol, Free flowing brown sugars, Fructose, Fruit juice, Fruit juice concentrate, Galactose, Glucose, Glucose solids, Golden sugar, Golden syrup, Granulated sugar, Grape sugar, High fructose corn syrup, Honey, Icing sugar, Invert sugar, Lactose, Malt Maltodextrin, Maltose, Malt syrup, Mannitol, Maple syrup, Molasses, Muscovado, Panocha, Powdered sugar, Raw sugar, Refiner’s syrup, Rice syrup, Sucrose, Treacle, Turbinado sugar and Yellow sugar, treacle, Sorghum syrup,

2 : Sources of sugars?

Sugars are found naturally in many foods. For example: Sugar components are in all Food sources like the fructose in fruit and vegetables and the likes of honey and apple. But its sad to think that we have become so accustomed to sugar that it is now added to nearly all processed food to include meats, breads, sauces, yoghurts, cakes and treats. Below is what sugars are found and on what foods naturally. And remember I'm not against natural sugars, you still should aim to limit these but they are designed to be eaten and come as a whole food source system and it is not added.

Glucose - Fruits, vegetables, table sugar, honey, milk products, cereals

Fructose - Fruits, vegetables, honey

Galactose - Milk products

Sucrose - Fruits, vegetables, table sugar, honey

Lactose - Milk products

Maltose - Malt products, some cereals

3 : Some Shocking Facts 

- The average North American/ canadian adult consumes around 22 teaspoons per day of sugar 

- The average North American/ canadian child consumes around 32 teaspoons per day of sugar 

- Sugar has been shown to have addictive qualities like many drugs people can become addicted to. 

- A 23 oz. bottle of Arizona Green Tea has about 51 grams of sugar, which is about the same as eating 20 Hershey’s Kisses.

- A 16 oz. can of Monster Energy has 54 ounces of sugar, which is the same amount of sugar as 3½ cups of Frosted Flakes.

- A 32 oz. Gatorade bottle has 36 grams of sugar, which is like eating 5 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

- A Grande Starbucks Iced Flavored drink has about 28 grams of sugar, which is the same amount of sugar in 2½ Krispy Kreme donuts.

- Sugar threatens more than thin waistlines. It has also been associated with several conditions and diseases, including type 2 diabetes, arthritis, acne, heart disease, depression, thrush/yeast infections, and cancer.

4 : What should we do? 

OK so people ask all the time what they can do to avoid so much sugar. So i have a few pieces of advice. Firstly really try and keep your sugar consumption under the daily recommended allowance. Im not a fan of recommended as I don't believe anyone is the same or should be treated like that. But According to the American Heart Association (AHA), the maximum amount of added sugars you should eat in a day are:

Men: 150 calories per day (37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons)

Women: 100 calories per day (25 grams or 6 teaspoons)

To put that into perspective, one 12-oz can of Coke contains 140 calories from sugar, while a regular-sized Snickers bar contains 120 calories from sugar.

1 - Avoid all processed food as much as possible, if it has an ingredients list and use by date avoid it. 

2 - Avoid food that say fat free as they are usually loaded with sugar

3 - Avoid sweet sugary drinks and soda 

4 - Don't get pulled into the seasonal tea/coffee beverages (they are loaded with syrup)

5 - Avoid high Fructose corn syrup 

6 - Don't keep sugar or sweets around the house

7 - Increase your fat intake

8 - Avoid unseasonal fruits (pineapples don't grow in winter)

9 - Find foods that help your sweet craving - I like apple and cinnamon, or my favourite tea is one called bengal spice.

Fruit is a great natural source

5: Signs you're addicted to sugar

1. Weight gain

Glucose is a major source of energy for the body, but if it is not used immediately as energy, the body stores excess in the liver, muscles, or as fat around the middle. Glucose storage worked well when we were hunter-gatherers, but nowadays food shortage is rarely a problem so we end up storing more glucose as fat around the middle. increasing the risk of metabolic disease and diabetes.

2. Weakened immune system

Did you know that 70% of our immune system is located in the gut, and supported by beneficial gut bacteria? It's therefore important to keep a balance of good bacteria. A diet high in sugar, however, will feed the less desirable bacteria and yeast and consequently affect how well the immune system functions. 1 teaspoon of sugar suppresses the immune system for up to 4 hours.

3. Low energy

Glucose is essential for energy production throughout the body, however, it is important to keep blood sugar levels balanced as opposed to experiencing the peaks and troughs that occur when we binge on sugary snacks. Following the consumption of sugar, the pancreas releases insulin to help transfer glucose to the cells, meaning we may experience a rush of energy. Once used up, we can experience a dip in energy as the body demands more sugar to start the cycle all over again. It is not hard to imagine that the higher the sugar peak, the more extreme the sugar dip that will follow.

4. Constant cravings

Sugary foods are addictive, giving us a quick 'fix' that tempts us back time and time again. Foods high in sugar have been shown to activate the reward pathway in the brain by releasing dopamine, similar to that of addictive drugs. The nutrient chromium could help to restore normal insulin function and supplementation has been shown to contribute to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels and to reduce sugar and carbohydrate cravings. try to balance your meals with good sources of protein and fat and whole carbohydrates in the form of vegetables or some fruit.

5. Unexplained bloating

Less desirable bacteria and yeast produce gases when they ferment our undigested food in the colon. Bad bacteria particularly loves eating sugars, whereas beneficial bifidobacteria, who love veggies, are not believed to produce any gas. An overproduction of gas can lead to pain after eating, uncomfortable bloating and flatulence.

6. Insomnia

Eating sugary foods late at night could lead to a rush in energy at a time when we should be focusing on slowing down and preparing the body to rest. Our 'happy hormone', serotonin is largely produced in the gut and is essential for melatonin production – the 'relaxation' hormone – necessary to aid a good night's sleep. If you're someone who has trouble sleeping, then it might help to reduce the sugar in your diet, and be kinder to your gut.

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