Perhaps I should title this “Sugar: America’s Legal Drug Obsession”, or “Sugar: The Drug We Gladly Feed to Our Children”, or “Sugar: The Root Cause Behind Heart Disease (and most others)”. I could go on and on here.
So, what’s so bad about sugar? It’s everywhere, it’s in everything and everyone seems to be addicted to it. What could be the problem?
10 Reasons Sugar is Satan:
- It’s a lot like crack: each drug lights up a different part of the brain, hijacks a certain neurotransmitter pathway(s). Sugar hijacks the brain’s reward center BIG TIME, influencing the same neurotransmitters as cocaine. When you activate the reward center too frequently you run the risk of causing intense cravings for more sugar.
- Blood Sugar Screwup: Without giving you an endocrinology lesson, just know that having and keeping a balanced blood sugar profile is THE ticket to happy hormones, low inflammation and ideal body composition. Sugar completely screws this up. It sends your blood sugars on a yo-yo, complete with the deleterious downstream hormonal effects.
- Carb Addiction is REAL: Carb addiction is sugar addiction. Alcohol addiction is very much a sugar addiction. Best to not acquire the sugar addition in the first place. This starts in childhood. Carb addiction leads to obesity.
- Diabetes: Drinking just one regular soda a day increases your risk of developing Diabetes Type 2 by over 25%.
- Fatty Liver: After 6 months of daily soda drinking, fat deposits in the liver increased by 150%! Fatty liver is BAD NEWS (diabetes and heart disease are not far behind!)
- Alzheimer’s Disease: Alzheimers is being touted as Type 3 Diabetes. People who develop type 2 diabetes often experience a sharp decline in cognitive function and almost 70% of them ultimately develop Alzheimer’s. People with Type 2 Diabetes are more likely to have brain “tangles”, the hallmark of Alzheimers. If you have Type 2 Diabetes, especially uncontrolled,it is my opinion based on the studies that I’ve seen, that you should pretty much count on getting Alzheimers down the line.
- Slowed, Shrunken and Inflamed Brains: Brains on sugar suffer from slowed cognition, shrinkage of grey matter and inflammation.
- Depression and Anxiety: An inflamed brain is often a depressed and anxious brain.
- Cancer Feeds off Sugar: Fructose in particular. It feeds off of it and helps it to grow.
- Metabolic Dysfunction and Weight Gain: Sugar, especially in the form of fructose, is known to throw the “fat switch”. It’s a fast-track ticket to fat gain.
- Bonus #11: PAIN! Sugar causes inflammation all throughout the body and this leads directly to painful joints, spine and muscles.
Americans are now consuming 126 grams, which would equal close to 32 teaspoons a DAY! You may be shocked by how much you are eating if you start adding it up. A can of coke contains just over 9 teaspoons alone!
So how much is safe? Not much. The American Heart Association suggests no more than 25 grams (or 6 tsps) a day for women and just over that for men. Either way, a can of soda more than maxes that out.
Fruit is full of fructose as well, so gorging on it (or honey- pure fructose) and convincing yourself that it’s ok because it’s “natural” is not any better.
The best way to cut the addiction is to simply cut it out. I find that many adults who cut sugar gravitate towards alcohol, and vice versa, they are one in the same. Be careful with that. Of all the thousands of patients that I’ve counseled over the years, simply cutting it out cold turkey was always the most effective.
Check out this infographic from Mercola.com
Discover the fructose content of common foods, beverages, sauces, and even sugar substitutes in our infographic “Fructose Overload.” Use the embed code to share it on your website or visit our infographic page for the high-res version.
<img src="http://media.mercola.com/assets/images/infographic/fructose-overload-infographic.jpg" alt="fructose overload infographic" border="0" style="max-width:100%; min-width:300px; margin: 0 auto 20px auto; display:block;"><p style="max-width:800px; min-width:300px; margin:0 auto; text-align:center;">Discover the fructose content of common foods, beverages, sauces, and even sugar substitutes in our infographic "<a href="http://www.mercola.com/infographics/fructose-overload.htm">Fructose Overload</a>." Visit our infographic page for the high-res version.</p>
- Malik VS, Popkin BM, Bray GA, Despres JP, Willett WC, Hu FB. Sugar-sweetened beverages and risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes: a meta-analysis. Diabetes Care. 2010;33(11):2477-2483.
- Maersk M, Belza A, Stodkilde-Jorgensen H, et al. Sucrose-sweetened beverages increase fat storage in the liver, muscle, and visceral fat depot: a 6-mo randomized intervention study. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012;95(2):283-289.
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