Do you find that where ever you are, there are so many sugary foods? At the supermarket checkout, we’re tempted with brightly coloured sweet snacks. When you are paying for petrol there are rows and rows of chocolate bars calling out to us. Even down to when we’re watching TV, it’s almost guaranteed we’ll see mouth-watering adverts showing us luxury box of chocolates, high sugar cereals or fizzy drinks.
Let’s face it, is everywhere and is constantly right in front of us, and we don’t even realise the subtle marketing methods used to get us to buy more of these foods. It’s therefore important for us to start being conscious of our sugar intake, as too much sugar is bad for our health and here are 10 reasons why:
A high diet of processed foods leaves you feeling hungry soon after, as these foods are not balanced. They often are low in protein and fibre, these keep us feeling full and are also needed for many important functions in your body.
Sugars are often added to foods and drinks to improve their taste, which we begin to enjoy the taste of, and want more of. A high sugar diet, results in a higher calorie intake, which then can lead to being overweight or obese. And, even though these foods are high in calories, they are low in important nutrients that the body needs such as proteins, fibre, vitamins or minerals. This is why excess sugar is often referred to as ‘empty calories.’
Read the labels to see how much sugar there is in your cookies, fizzy drinks, ice cream or other processed foods as this may be leading to weight gain.
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Do you know that being overweight or obese increases your risk of ? This is because it can cause insulin resistance. Type 2 Diabetes is the most common type of diabetes and can cause some complications later in life, as it affects other major organs.
Over indulging in sugar is also associated with increasing low grade inflammation in the body, which in turn can lead to diseases such as . In addition, when you are overweight, you are at a higher risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and stroke.
Do you find that when grazing on sweet snacks you are eating less vegetables and fruits? When you are having more sugary foods you end up eating less of the nutritious foods which boost your immunity.
This is something we know but forget until a visit to the dentist. When you have sugary foods or drinks, the sugar mixes with the bacteria inside your mouth to produce acid. The acid gradually wears down the enamel which then leads to cavities and tooth decay.
One of the effects of poor dental health is that gum disease is associated with an increase in risk of heart disease.
For naturally healthy skin the body needs essential nutrients, like Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Omega 3, etc. But when your diet is higher in sugar, you may not be getting sufficient nutritious foods. So, for clear healthy skin, look at what you are eating.
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Having excessive sugar has been shown to have addictive properties. After consuming these foods, the body releases certain chemicals to make us feel good. However, once that wears off, we want more of these foods. So, over time, it becomes a habit, where we are having more of these sweet foods to keep us feeling good.
Often, when most of us feel tired or our energy levels are low, we turn to sugary foods to pick us up. However, these processed sugars give us a "sugar rush" and once the effect of this wears off, you may then find yourself having a “sugar low”, causing fatigue and tiredness, so then you turn to sugar again. This is the sugar roller coaster.
is a Certified Health Coach and Certified Professional Cancer Coach. In this regular column for iGlobal, she offers some special insights, from useful wellness tips to recipes for creations that are not only delicious but also healthy.