10 Reasons why sugar is bad for you

1. Weight Gain

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Rates of obesity are rising worldwide and added sugar is one of the main culprits.

Sugar (fructose) increases your hunger and desire for food.

Too much fructose consumption causes resistance to leptin, a hormone that regulates hunger.

2. Heart Disease

High-sugar diets can cause heart disease.

High-sugar diets can lead to obesity, high blood sugar and blood pressure levels.

Consuming too much sugar, has been linked to atherosclerosis, a disease characterized by fatty, artery-clogging deposits.

3. Acne

A diet high in refined carbs, including sugary foods and drinks, can cause acne.

Sugary foods spike your blood sugar and insulin levels, leading to increased androgen secretion, oil production which can cause spots.

4. Diabetes

There is a clear link between excessive sugar consumption and diabetes risk.

Obesity, is often caused by consuming too much sugar, is considered the strongest risk for lifestyle diabetes

Prolonged high-sugar consumption drives resistance to insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that regulates blood sugar levels.

5. Cancer

A diet rich in sugary foods and beverages can lead to obesity, which significantly raises your risk of cancer.

A study in over 430,000 people found that added sugar consumption was positively associated with an increased risk of esophageal cancer, pleural cancer, endometrial cancer, and cancer of the small intestine .

6. Depression

A diet high in sugar may increase your chances of developing depression.

Researchers believe that blood sugar swings, neurotransmitter dysregulation and inflammation may all be reasons for sugar’s detrimental impact on mental health.

7. Skin Aging Process

Poor food choices can worsen wrinkles and speed the skin aging process.

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.

8. Aging

Telomeres, structures found at the end of chromosomes, protect your chromosomes. As you grow older, telomeres naturally shorten. Although the shortening of telomeres is a normal part of aging, unhealthy lifestyle choices can speed up the process.

Consuming high amounts of sugar has been shown to accelerate telomere shortening, which increases cellular aging, and pre-mature ageing.

9. Energy

Foods high in sugar quickly spike blood sugar, leading to increased energy.

However, this rise in energy levels is fleeting.

But its quickly followed by a sharp drop in blood sugar, often referred to as a crash.

10. Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is caused by bacteria in the mouth using sugar from foods and drinks to produce acids that dissolve and damage the teeth.

Sugar sweetened beverages have high levels of sugar and drinking these can significantly contribute to tooth decay.

Regular and ‘diet’ soft drinks, sports drinks, energy drinks, fruit juices, fruit drinks and cordials also have high acid levels that can cause tooth erosion.

Tooth erosion occurs when acid attacks the teeth to dissolve the outer surface of tooth enamel.

Regular loss of enamel can lead to cavities and exposure of the inner layers of the tooth that may become sensitive and painful.

Prevention of enamel loss is very important for the long term health of your teeth.

How to Reduce Your Sugar Intake

  • Swap soft drinks, energy drinks, juices and sweetened teas for water or unsweetened sugar free drinks.
  • Sweeten plain yogurt with fresh or frozen berries instead of buying flavored, sugar-loaded yogurt.
  • Consume whole fruits instead of sugar-sweetened fruit smoothies.
  • Replace sweets with a homemade mix of fruit, nuts and a few dark chocolate chips.
  • Use olive oil and vinegar in place of sweet salad dressings like honey mustard.
  • Look for cereals, granolas and granola bars with under 4 grams of sugar per serving.
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages that are sweetened with soda, juice, honey, sugar or agave.
  • Focus on fresh, whole ingredients.