The Problem with Sugar

I passed an older lady (probably in her late 70’s) in the grocery store the other day and and she made a comment to her friend (who was probably around the same age) that stood out to me. “Sugar is in everything, I won’t eat that stuff, it’s not good for you”.   I wish more people would listen to their elders . Especially when talking about sugar addiction.  Sugar is not all bad. Most things are okay in moderation…the key word being “MODERATION”.

It seems like sugar is in so many foods. Unfamiliar terms such as dextrin, dextrose, maltose, sucanant etc. makes its confusing to figure out what is what.  Furthermore, there are over 50 diverse types of sugar…yes, I said OVER 50!!!  Part of the problem is that the American public lacks nutritional education.  As a result, the general public is truly unaware of the amount of sugar they consume. But that’s for another blog!

Is Sugar really Additive?

According to peer reviewed resource, YES, it is.  In this article, a clinical research study was conducted using rats.  Scientists gave both cocaine and sugar to lab rats.  The rats could then choose whether to press the cocaine lever or the sugar lever.  Guess which one most of them chose. Over 90% of the rats went back for the sugar rather than the cocaine.

Scientists concluded that sugar triggered the same biological response of “reward” in our brains as cocaine.  Why?  Because the reward system in mammals’ brains are coupled with the evolutionary baseline to consume as many calories as possible for survival. The sugar was more appealing to rats than a Schedule II narcotic!  This is likely true for humans as well.

Sugar addiction is real.

Yes, sugar can be additive.

How does a sugar addiction affect your body?

First of all, our bodies metabolize (change form or digest) sugar as both a carbohydrate and as a fat. Once in your digestive tract, sugar hydrolyzes (breaks down) into fructose and glucose. Glucose starts out as a carbohydrate, but is quickly stored as a fat.

To put it simply,  SUGAR = FAT.  If you remember this simple equation, you can control your fat storage.

How do I break my sugar addiction?

Just like any other addiction, you must admit you have a problem.  Ask yourself:

  1. How much soda (even diet), coffee with sweeteners, juices, sports drinks do I have a day?
  2. Do I eat a lot of processed or prepared foods (out of the box, bag, freezer etc.)?
  3. Do I crave something sweet after meals?
  4. Can I go a whole week without consuming sweeteners or sugars?
  5. Do feel guilty after eating foods with sugars/sweeteners?

The best thing to do is STOP and be AWARE of how much sugar you are consuming per day. Also, don’t eat anything that has double digit sugar/ net carbohydrate grams.

At InShapeMD, we teach you about your body and how different foods affect your fat loss process.  Let us help you reach your goals and book an appointment today!