Why Sugar Is Ruining Your Health
A healthy body starts from the inside out. Most of us have heard this popular phrase before. The advertisement of healthy foods and smart diets is everywhere now. But still, many people find it difficult to adjust to a healthier diet. The reason might be that they are addicted to sugar and sugar-rich food. An alarming number of health conditions are being linked to sugar consumption. Toxins in your body, like cytokines and advanced glycation end products (AGEs), have been proven to be linked to obesity and type 2 diabetes.
These toxins can cause disease by damaging the proteins on cell receptors that affect our blood sugar levels, blood fats (like cholesterol), and even markers of liver injury. Of all the common sugars, fructose is the most damaging.
Sugar is hidden in almost everything we eat and it’s ruining our health. We tend to identify sugar as only the white crystals that come from a sugar cane plant or the sucrose present in fruits like melon. There’s a lot more that can be called sugar other than those two ingredients.
In this article, you will find the negative effects of sugar on your health, and why you should stop consuming sugar if you want a healthier, disease-free life.
- Refined sugar can increase your cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Refined sugar doesn’t just cause blood sugar spikes, it can also increase your cholesterol and triglyceride levels. These are both types of fat that are found in your blood, and when you eat too much sugar, they accumulate in your body.
Cholesterol is a key cause of heart disease. It clogs arteries and makes it hard for oxygen-rich blood to reach the heart. It’s also a major risk factor for stroke.
Triglycerides are another type of fat found in the blood. High amounts can increase your risk of heart disease by causing inflammation and other damage to the arteries.
A high level of cholesterol or triglycerides is usually caused by genetic factors, but eating too much sugar can also contribute to them.
- Added sugar can give cancer a foothold to grow.
The American Cancer Society study found that added sugar can give cancer a foothold to grow. The research showed that men who had more added sugars in their diet were more likely to be diagnosed with an aggressive form of prostate cancer than those who consumed less added sugar. Diet rich in sugary foods and beverages can lead to obesity, which significantly raises your risk of cancer. Furthermore, diets high in sugar increase inflammation in your body and may cause insulin resistance, both of which increase cancer risk.
- Sugar can deplete your energy levels, leading to fatigue and daytime drowsiness.
Sugar can deplete your energy levels, leading to fatigue and daytime drowsiness. Sugar is a type of carbohydrate, which acts as the body’s main source of energy. Referred to as glucose, sugar is burned to produce energy in most cells of the body, including those within your brain. When you eat large amounts of sugar, your brain experiences a surge in glucose followed by a steep decline in blood glucose levels. This decline can lead to mental fatigue and drowsiness.
- Increased insulin production
After eating sugar or other carbohydrates, your body must release insulin to help lower blood sugar levels. Increased insulin production encourages fat storage and may lead to weight gain or obesity, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Weight gain is associated with increases in your risk of developing diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
- Blood pressure fluctuations
Consuming large amounts of sugar can increase your blood pressure due to increased levels of norepinephrine — one of the hormones that help regulate your blood pressure. High blood pressure is associated with multiple complications including stroke, heart attack, and kidney disease.
- Refined sugar is bad for your skin.
Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are compounds formed by reactions between sugar and protein in your body. They are suspected to play a key role in skin aging. Consuming a diet high in refined carbs and sugar leads to the production of AGEs, which may cause your skin to age prematurely. AGEs damage collagen and elastin, which are proteins that help the skin stretch and keep its youthful appearance. When collagen and elastin become damaged, the skin loses its firmness and begins to sag.
- Sugar is harmful to your teeth
Eating too much sugar can cause cavities. Bacteria in your mouth feed on sugar and release acid byproducts, which cause tooth mineralization.
- Sugar can lead to type 2 diabetes
Research shows that people who drink sugar-sweetened beverages tend to weigh more — and be at higher risk for type 2 diabetes — than those who don’t. One study even found that people who increased their sugar intake gained about 1.7 pounds in less than 2 months. It may be because sugar increases inflammation of fat cells, which causes cells to release chemicals that increase weight.