Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Here is a great article about sugar - thanks to Jan!

Sugar, Sugar

So the truth is, sugar is not so sweet in the way it relates to you and your weight. Research reveals that the average American consumes more than 47 teaspoons of sugar per day! This upswing in consumption directly correlates to an upswing of national obesity, and the ever irritating belly fat!
Too much sugar and too many refined carbs affect our insulin levels, changing blood sugar levels and causing fat to accumulate, especially around the waistline. High blood pressure and an increased risk of heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes are 3 other good reasons to get sugar consumption under control.

Just as a fine vehicle needs good gas to drive smoothly, our bodies need good nutrition to function correctly? This means that most calories need to come from REAL FOOD- protein, healthy fats, complex carbs, (whole grains), fruits, nuts, beans, fresh veggies and lots of them!

Take a look at your own pantry and fridge and check out the sugars hiding in milk, bread, cereal, condiments, soup, peanut butter, as well as the obvious sweets and treats. Filling up with non nutritional, high sugar/fat foods keeps us away from the good stuff. It may also suppress the immune system, effect moods, cause headaches, change energy levels, promote tooth decay, cause unnecessary weight gain, increase fluid retention...I'll stop there, but it's not a pretty list!

Can you be addicted to sugar? You bet! Try going off of it. A good layman's definition of any addiction is anything you throw an internal TANTRUM over not being able to have. That's a red light. Sugar has the classic symptoms of cravings, increased intake, withdrawal, and relapse. You CAN do with less!

I have been my own guinea pig for about a month now, decreasing my sugar intake (trying to limit myself to 15-20 grams daily). It's been tough, no doubt, but the reward is seeing my waistline whittling down and feeling better as I replace my usual treats with more healthy choices! I admit, part of me wants to tackle my husband when he wanders by with a bowl of ice cream, but I remind myself that I feel better without that wider waist line, so I resist the temptation and let it pass!

Don't substitute garbage chemicals like saccharin, aspartame, high fructose corn syrup, and sucralose. I won't go on about this, but do your homework if you need to. They're not good for you. Period. Soda? Forget it. Diet Soda? Even worse. Ultimately we want to slow down our appetite for sugar, not feed it through false sources.

Stress may trigger your sweet tooth, or even thirst, so ask yourself the age old question before you eat the sweet- "Do I really want this?" Try drinking 8 oz. of water and WAITING 15 minutes. If the urge is still there, go for something more pure like dark chocolate over a processed candy bar.

If you aim at 5 grams of sugar 3x a day, you'll start to notice positive results. There's so much to say on this subject, but I'll restrain myself! Bottom line, watch your sugar, Sugar.

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