Health, Nutrition & food, Physical

How refined sugar affects your body?

Who doesn’t like to follow up a meal with desserts? People with a sweet tooth are to be found everywhere. Probably there are as many sweet dishes in the world as there are other dishes. Every culture, every region has its own multitude of authentic sweet dishes. Sugar is a really important ingredient and a ubiquitous food ingredient in any culture. But the presence of sugar isn’t limited to sweet dishes and occasional servings. And that’s where the problem arises, and prime conern being the presence of refind sugar. Sugar in tea, coffee, fruits, rice, certain curries, biscuits and everywhere!

Science behind refined sugar intake?

What’s the science behind sweet tooth? Our body has taste buds that are embedded not only in the tongue but all around inside the mouth and throat. They can perceive four basic tastes- Sweet, Sour, Bitter, Salty. Preference for taste is determined by many factors like genetics, childhood conditioning, gender, and hormonal influences. Women have more preference for sweets and chocolates than men. If you have had good childhood memories with sweets, you will like them all your life. The hormonal fluxes during periods increase women’s craving for sweets. Genes also determine how sensitive you can be towards a particular taste.
Everything boils down to how healthy it is to let all that is sweet down our throat? We need to check out the various alternatives for sugar in our diet, to avoid the heavy impact of it on our body. At times, we don’t realize the amount of sugar that’s going inside our body via drinks, beverages and even grains. Let’s have a check to assess what should be the right quantity of sugar an individual should consume and the right way of consuming it.
How sugar affects our body goes well beyond the calories that it adds. We shall divide our assessment into two major parts- refined sugar and natural sugar to analyze that.

Refined Sugar

Refined sugar

Refined sugar

Refined sugar is absolutely devoid of nutrients. It is of no nutritional value- contains no macro or micro nutrients. When refined sugar is ingested, our body has to withdraw vital nutrients like magnesium, potassium from the cells to digest the sugar. Gradually the amount of these vital nutrients in our body depletes, and as the sugar consumption continues without enough replenishment, body’s store of vital nutrients decreases to a level that causes other organs and bones to suffer. Osteoporosis, for example, happens when over utilization of calcium from the body to metabolize sugar leads to severe lack of calcium in bones. Diabetes, heart issues and blood thickening are few other problems generated by the same.

Sugar wreaks havoc on your skin

Collagen and Elastin are the protein fibers that give the skin its elasticity. Sugar in blood attaches to protein and forms compounds that damage Collagen and Elastin, thereby causing sagged and wrinkled skin. Learn the multiple benefits of Collagen.

Sugar increases insulin secretion in the blood

Sugar prompts our body to store more fat. The calories that sugar contains further aggravate the problem of weight gain. Increased insulin in the blood is the reason why one goes diabetic. A lot of insulin in blood stream also makes you feel tired throughout the day. In another way, insulin secretion creates a vicious cycle of craving for more sugar. The temporary influx of sugar that satisfies you intensely soon becomes a sugar crash and you crave for more sugar. Sugar also inhibits the formation of a hormone named Leptin. Leptin gives the brain a signal to stop eating as the stomach is full. So sugar can actually make you eat more because the signal giving hormone is inhibited.
Not just that, sugar also decreases the secretion of Dopamine – the feel good hormone. Though hogging on chocolate makes you feel good for a while, but then it induces a more permanent effect of feeling low because of decreased secretion.
After so much of cribbing about harmful effects of sugar, there is a good news that the natural alternative to a sweet dish can always be a fruit, or consumption of honey. Wondering if sugar in fruit can cause the same problems as refined sugar does? Fructose – the sugar in fruits comes packed with vital nutrients like Magnesium, Iron, Zinc, fiber, antioxidants, and enzymes. This makes up for the depletion of digestion and also provides added benefits. Talking about overeating fructose may definitely cause the same problems as refined sugar, though it is almost impossible to eat fruits in a quantity that will affect health adversely. That doesn’t give you the freedom of eating as many fruits as you want as an excess of anything can be bad.
Mango, grapes, pineapples and certain other fruits are very high on sugar that should be consumed in a limited manner. Needless to say that people having trouble because of excess sugar should avoid them. Have you tried switching off from your regular cold drinks to these alternative drinks, that are much more energy giving?

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