Sugar is a highly addictive substance. When you eat even a little, your body inevitably craves more. Can’t live without sodas and donuts? Maybe you try to keep your treats small and healthy, but you are still likely to be consuming way too much.
Our modern diet has hidden sugars in just about everything that’s jarred, bottled or boxed. Why? Because if we become addicted to the flavors, we will definitely buy more.
Whilst no one can deny the euphoria of shooting sugar through your eyeballs, are you ready for the consequences of giving in to that nagging muffin top? Here’s what holistic health coach Elizabeth Schieffelin, from Lizzy’s All Natural and Kate & Kimi, has to say about the dangers of a diet lavish in sugar.
Most people only worry about sugar in regards to their waistline, but we know it’s far more dangerous to our health. Why should we be aware of our sugar consumption? What are some of the things that sugar does to our bodies?
Here’s the run down: refined sugar has no minerals, no proteins, no fats and no fiber. It may taste good, but it is made of completely useless refined carbohydrates. When we eat sugar, our glucose levels spike. Not long after that, the inevitable glucose drop can lead to low energy, ‘brain fog’, mood swings and anxiety.
Sugar is also a notorious immune system suppressor and a cause of inflammation. As a result, the more sugar we eat, the more vulnerable we are to getting sick.
Try some sugar-free alternatives from Kate & Kimi.
How to give up sugar little by little
Sugar is hidden everywhere in our food. What are three places that we may not be looking?
Check the labels of:
–Sauces, marinades and condiments like teriyaki, barbeque, pizza/pasta sauce, stir fry sauces and ketchup
–“Low fat” anything – cereals, yogurts, energy bars, soft drinks…usually if it’s low fat, it’s high in sugar.
What are a few tips to keep sugar at a healthy level?
The average threshold for our bodies to digest sugar is 2-4 teaspoons per day. But this threshold is often reached within the first few bites of breakfast! For example, a candy bar can have more than 6 teaspoons, an energy drink can have more than 10 teaspoons, etc. Even a banana has 3 teaspoons of sugar!
Life is all about balance. Try to follow the 80/20 rule: 80% of the time stick to a fresh, whole foods, plant-based diet, and then indulge carefully for the remaining 20%. When indulging in sweets, seek out high quality options or homemade. If it’s a bad day and your friend home bakes cookies, you will definitely be eating them… on the other hand, don’t go to the Family Mart for Oreos or a candy bar.
Also try to save your sugar allowance for really satisfying treats instead of unknowingly overloading on ‘healthy’ cereals, sugary lattes, dried fruit snacks and white breads. Skip the fruit juices full of apples and oranges, if you are only drinking it ‘to be healthy’, and just go for a (small) piece of cake. You are likely to be getting the same amount of sugar from either option.
You don’t need to go cold turkey and swear that you and sugar are never, ever getting back together, but it’s time we all downgraded sugar from our serious relationship status.
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