Some people have been told that sugar is bad for them so much that they think any sugar in their diet is bad. The truth is that sugar is a perfectly healthy part of a human's diet, as long as it is in certain forms and consumed in moderation. There are sugars that are more harmful than others, and there are certainly limits on how much you should consume, but in it of itself, sugar is not necessarily bad all of the time.
Sugar actually plays a very important role in your body's metabolic process. Cells use it for energy as long as there is not too much sugar in the bloodstream on a consistent basis. If you do consume too much sugar for many years, then your body can become disrupted, leading to it no longer producing insulin, which assists the cells in consuming the sugar. When insulin is no longer being produced, then the body no longer has a way to process the sugars, leading to health issues like diabetes.
What has led to the increase in diabetes is that people consume empty sugars. These are in drinks like soda, fake juices and other beverages where sugar is added to enhance its flavor. Foods that contain sugars that the body does not need include cakes, cookies, ice cream and many snacks. Avoiding these foods and drinks can go a long way towards ensuring that you are not consuming more sugar than your body can process healthily.
Healthy sugars are found in fruits. Like sugars from sources that contain no nutrition, it is possible to consume too many fruit sugars. It is recommended that people consume at least two servings of fruit each day, but more is acceptable, depending on your level of physical activity each day.
Another source of sugar comes in the form of carbohydrates. These are primarily found in pasta, bread and other foods made with grains. Someone that eats about 2000 calories each day should consume about 225 grams of carbohydrates each day. This again varies depending on how active your lifestyle is.
Sugars are a great source of energy when consumed in moderation. However, if they are consumed at levels that are higher than is good for the body, they can lead to the opposite effect. People that consume a large number of sugars find that they lack energy and may even struggle with fatigue and sleepiness. This occurs when there is more sugar in the blood than the body can process.
Some people find that they can even become addicted to sugars. This is because they can lead to dopamine releases, leading the person consuming them to have a feeling of well-being soon after they are eaten. Eventually simply knowing that you are going to consume a sugary treat will lead to one feeling pleasure. This kind of addiction seems benign at first, but many years of this addiction can cause major health issues just like many other addictions.
One area that people do not think of as being unhealthy because of the sugar content is drinking alcohol. Most people mainly think of the health effects that can come from the alcohol consumption itself, such as liver and kidney problems. The truth is, however, that before people see the effects on other organs, they can see damage to the pancreas and develop diabetes. Those that work to quit drinking alcohol often note that they have a strong urge to consume sweets, soda, and juices. This is because the body was not only addicted to alcohol but the sugars that it contained as well.
Thankfully, unlike other addictions, there is not a negative physical response when the individual breaks the addiction. Other than cravings, the body will actually respond positively to the reduction in consumption. Those that work to limit their intake find that they quickly begin to lose weight and have more energy than they had for a long time. These are very positive reinforcers to keeping to their desire to live a healthier lifestyle.
It is important to remember that it is not necessary to remove all sugars from your diet. It really actually is nearly impossible to do as even vegetables and meats contain some amount of sugar. It is important, however, to be sure that you are eating only as much sugar as your body needs.
In fact, there really is no reason to concern yourself with the amount of sugar that you find in natural foods as long as you eat them in moderation. The real concern is where sugars are added to processed foods. It is recommended by most physicians that men only consume about 37 grams of added sugar and that women only consume 25 grams of added sugar. Reading food labels is essential in determining exactly how much-added sugar you are consuming. For example, one serving size of soda typically contains more added sugar that you should have in one day. Therefore, drinking soda should be a rare occurrence. Unfortunately for the health of many, that is not the case.
Knowing the potential health issues that come with over-consumption can help you to make good decisions about what you put into your body. For example, diabetes is more than just having to inject insulin and check your blood sugar levels. As the disease progresses, especially in those that do not change their diet, it can lead to blindness and the loss of feet due to the lack of circulation. These are very devastating results of not taking control of your diet. Obesity is another possible consequence, which then can lead to a number of illnesses including heart disease.
It isn't necessary to think of all forms of sugar as bad. Sugar is an important part of a healthy diet, but it should be only consumed in moderation. Keeping an eye on your sugar intake can do a great deal to ensure that you live a long, healthy life.