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Truth Behind Sugar

truth-behind-sugar

The holidays are upon us and our sugar intake is sure to skyrocket. However, you may rethink that after learning the truth behind sugar.

The History

The origination of sugar is believed to be 5,000 years ago, yet first recorded in 1099. Western Europeans dubbed it as “new spice,” speaking of how pleasant it was. Only royalty and the wealthy could afford it and considered it “white gold.”

In 1619, sugarcane arrived in the United States. As sugar production increased so did the need for labor. Working in sugarcane fields was dangerous and hard, so the British West Indies imported over four million slaves from Africa.

Once slavery ended in the United States, slave refugees from Haiti migrated, and sugar plantations began in Louisiana all the way to Hawaii. Through the 1800s, canning, ice cream, and candy greatly increased the demand.

The consumption of sugar for the average American went from 4 to 18 pounds in the 1800s, and increased to 90 in the 1900s. Today, the average American consumes 180 pounds of sugar a year.

Defining Sugar

The body does require sugar, but the difference in the truth behind sugar is natural sugar versus manufactured sugar. Fruit may contain over 18 grams of sugar, but it also contains fiber. Our bodies takes a long time to digest fiber as sugar is released slowly into our bloodstream. It gives us a sustained source of energy and keeps us full longer periods of time.

Manufactured table sugar and high fructose corn syrup are found in soda, sports drinks, energy drinks, and processed fruit juices. It is an empty calorie additive with no vitamins, minerals, protein, or fiber too.

The uptake of liquid sugar to the bloodstream happens immediately. Therefore, it leaves us hungry with the tendency to overeat.

Sugar may satisfy a craving, but doesn’t give your body what it needs. It leaves you with a thirst for more and overloading the body.

Truth Behind Sugar

Sugar consumption has risen, and consequently obesity, diseases, and type 2 diabetes rates have skyrocketed worldwide as well. The most dangerous and highest is in soda, flavored coffee and flavored tea drinks.

A 12-ounce soda contains around 10 teaspoons of sugar. That far exceeds the daily allotment of sugar (six teaspoons for women and nine for men). Flavored coffee and tea contain 5 teaspoons.

Americans consume a daily rate of four 12-ounce glasses of sugary beverages. Furthermore, research by the UC-Davis reported that the rate can raise LDL cholesterol significantly in two weeks. (LDL cholesterol is classic risk factor for heart disease).

For the first time in history, the truth behind sugar is that obese people outnumber those underweight.

Consequently, liver disease that used to be primarily for alcoholics is being directly related to our increased super-sized sugar appetite. The truth behind sugar's effect on our body is an ongoing study.

Sweet Prevention

The United States does not have a nationwide soda tax. Yet many states and cities are passing laws to expose the truth behind sugar. In addition, bring awareness to encourage reduced consumption of the beverages.

In response, The American Beverage Association and has focused on reducing the sugar consumed from beverages. Some major brands like Pepsi have promised to do so by 2020.

The Food and Drug Administration is also helping to expose truth behind sugar to make aware of what people are actually consuming. A new nutrition facts panel on packaged food and beverages has been enforced.

Companies must list how many grams of sugar and artificial sweeteners have been added. In addition, the percentage of the recommended daily maximum that it represents.

The labels will reflect actual consumption and a larger size font in serving sizes. For example, ice cream going from 1/2 a cup to 2/3 a cup, and calorie content.

In conclusion, take the information, and resist the next time your body is craving sugar. If you can't, eat a piece of fruit or a different natural food.

If that doesn’t help then ask yourself is that sugar worth your life?

Way to reduce or eliminate the consumption of sugars in your diet

Reduce carbohydrates intake 
Net carbs are total grams of carbohydrates minus total grams of fiber consumed. Keeping net carbs below 50 grams per day will reduce sugar cravings.

Eat whole foods 
Whole foods provide your body with the nutrition you need to function, and natural sugars bound to fiber reducing your carbs intake.

Try Fermented foods 
They will stimulate your digestive health and the sour taste helps with sweet cravings. Fresh fruit instead of canned fruit - average amount of sugar in canned fruit is 19 grams.

Add spices instead of sugar 
Replace sugar with spices such as cinnamon to add flavor and speed up your metabolism instead of slowing it.

Check the label
Foods that boast low in sugar, nonfat or low-fat could mean high level of artificial sweeteners or sugar alcohols, hence just as bad as refined sugar.

Written by Dr. Scott Mindel. View published article in the Ville Magazine 2016 Nov/Dec Holiday issue.

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