Added sugar is the single worst ingredient in the modern diet…there I’ve said it!
It provides calories with no added nutrients and can damage your metabolism in the long run.
A diet high in sugars, especially refined sugars, is linked to obesity, type II diabetes, heart disease, dementia, macular degeneration, tooth decay, and brain effects from addiction and cravings to mood problems, anxiety and even depression.
You need to drop the white stuff and turn to healthier alternatives. If you do almost immediately you and your children will experience a dramatic improvement in health and wellbeing.
The problem of course is how easy it is to eat too much of this delicious sweet stuff. Even if you cut out sugar by avoiding the obvious things like soft drink, chocolate, confectionery, baked goods and processed foods, almost all of the perceived healthy foods we consume also contain sugar.
‘Hidden sugars’ are in so many everyday foods like low-fat yoghurt, muesli bars, breakfast cereals, bread, juice, condiments, baked beans, pasta sauces, tinned fruits, and many ‘healthy’ snacks i.e. low-fat or diet Foods.
These days, children are having nearly 3 times more sugar than they should. Below 5% of total daily energy intake of free sugars is recommended – this is 25g or 6 tsps for adults and 4 tsps for children.
While many foods have small amounts of naturally occurring sugar, you should avoid anything that has added sugar. Those sugars that are added to foods and drinks by the manufacturer, and added to our meals are not necessary.
Natural sugars are glucose, fructose, lactose, and sucrose. Glucose, is found in most foods we eat and the body deals with it very efficiently to give us energy for life. Lactose is found only in milk and sucrose is a combination of glucose and fructose and known as table sugar and added to many processed foods.
Fructose is found mainly in fruit, honey and some root vegetables. It is a damaging and addictive sugar and quickly gets taken in by the liver and turned into fat. This fatty liver leads to high insulin and further fat storage.
Remember, the manufacturers will try to disguise sugar in foods, and come up with lots of different names for sugar on labels. These include, raw organic cane sugar, fruit juice and fruit juice concentrate, apple juice concentrate, fruit puree, sucrose, corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), dehydrated or evaporated cane juice, fructose and crystalline fructose, molasses and blackstrap molasses, glucose, dextrose, syrup, cane syrup, beet sugar, invert sugar, caster sugar, raw sugar, turbinado sugar, maple syrup and more.
You need to be aware that whatever form it comes in, all the sugars have equal effects on your health.