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Kevin Eric Smith
Sugar Addiction and Our Health
The average American consumes around 25-35 teaspoons of sugar per day adding up to a whopping 100lbs+ a year! Our bodies are not made to handle such extreme amounts and sugar is one of the most addictive substances known to man. Did you know that sugar is 8x more addictive than Cocaine? You heard right. Sugar causes massive dopamine release in the brain, much more so than any foods found in nature.
Sugar can destroy the liver, damage the heart, cause metabolic dysfunction, destroy your leptin signaling and promote belly fat, increase uric acid levels, and feeds cancer cells. Sugar feeds candida, cause aging skin, and rob you of energy was the "high" is over. This can easily lead to the binging that many experience, chasing that rush. Scientists have scanned the brain of those that had just consumed a high-sugar treat, each and everyone's nucleus accumbens (the part of the brain that reacts when a person gets high on heroin or crack) was sparking all over the place. The exact same withdrawal symptoms we would see from a street drug is also present with sugar addiction. People become irritable, lethargic, and express feelings of anxiety.
How did we get here? Over the last three decades Americans have drastically increased their sugar intake. Interestingly enough, this happens to run parallel with our obsession for low-fat and fat-free food options. Some might not realize but when we removed the fat calories, we traded them for sugar. Fat makes the food taste good. When we removed the fats, the sugar became the way to keep the foods satisfying to the palette. Unfortunately, that has come at a high price of addiction.
We have reached a level of crisis with soaring rates of obesity, diabetes and other inflammatory conditions. It is forcing the FDA to take a closer look at new food labeling for detailing the added sugars.
Managing healthy glucose levels and avoiding fake sugars is crucial to your health - especially those suffering with Gout, Arthritis, and General Inflammation. Everyone should aim to stay under 25g of total fructose per day. This can add up quickly with processed foods! A breakfast bar alone contains 6.25 teaspoons of sugar, or 25grams, in ONE bar! Sauces, dressings, condiments and more all contain large amounts that keep adding and adding to the problem.
BREADS - WHITE RICE - PASTA - CEREAL = SUGAR!!!
Simple carbohydrates not only pack on the pounds, they also fire up inflammation. Simple carbs cause surges in blood sugar that promote a chemical reaction in cells called glycosylation, or the browning effect. To avoid such surges, stick to complex carbohydrates with a low glycemic index. See our fructose chart here for more information.
READ your food labels and steer clear of processed/boxed foods as much as possible. Often times, high-fructose corn syrup is the top ingredient. AVOID!! Avoid substitute sugars such as aspartame, sucrolose/splenda, saccharin, Acesulfame-K. Each is full of undesirable side effects and cancer-causing agents. Should you feel the need to sweeten any of your fresh foods, consider a natural sweetener such as stevia.
Related Article: Sugar and Gout Risks
Are you aware that uncontrolled inflammation can lead to
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