Is Sugar Actually Bad for You?
Sugar occurs naturally in foods like fruits, vegetables & grains. Consuming these whole foods is perfectly fine with our bodies. These whole foods also contain nutrients such as fiber, essential minerals, and antioxidants, and calcium. Since our bodies process these foods slowly, the sugar in these offers a steady supply of energy to your cells.
The problem comes when artificial sugar is added to products we consume to increase flavor or extend shelf life. Added sugar is the main ingredient in candy and is abundant in many processed foods, such as soft drinks and baked products. The most common added sugar is high fructose corn syrup and sucrose (regular table sugar).
We consume an excess amount of sugar daily and that has an impact on obesity, diabetes and our heart's health.
There is no simple answer to this question, while some peoples can eat a lot of sugar without harm, others should avoid it as much as they can.
According to the American Heart Association, the maximum amount of added sugars you should eat in a day are:
- For Men: 37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons, the equivalent of 150 calories
- For Women: 25 grams or 6 teaspoons, the equivalent of 100 calories
To give you a little idea of how much sugar we intake per day, one 12-oz can of Coke contains 140 calories of sugar, while a regular-sized Snickers bar contains 120 calories of sugar.
How to Reduce your Consumption?
Where is a list of names you should look for on the label whenever you buy process products in the near future:
- syrup sugar molecules ending in "ose" (dextrose, fructose, glucose, lactose, maltose, sucrose)
fruit juice concentrates
high-fructose corn syrup
Sugary food stimulates the same areas of the brains as drugs do. That's the main reason why they are so addicting. But I got one good fact for you, the sugar addiction is easy to overcome.
If a packaged food contains sugar in the first 3 ingredients or more than one type of sugar, you should avoid it.
How do I Know if I Am Addicted?
Have a hard time with the "everything in moderation"? A history of binge eating? Have a hard time disciplining yourself when it comes to eating? You probably are addicted.
What is the Solution?
Just like a smoker needs to avoid cigarettes completely, a sugar addict needs to cut all the sugar in the foods he consumes.
Every individual is unique and you have to find out what works best for your health.