We know that too much sugar is bad for our teeth but what does too much sugar do to our body?

Too much sugar can cause weight gain, abdominal obesity, decreased HDL and increased LDL, elevated blood sugar, elevated triglycerides, high blood pressure and it increases your uric acid levels.

Effects that consuming too much sugar has on your health:

  • It overloads and damages your liver. The effects of too much sugar or fructose can be likened to the effects of alcohol. This severely taxes and overloads the organ, leading to potential liver damage.
  • It tricks your body into gaining weight and affects your insulin and leptin signaling.Fructose fools your metabolism by turning off your body’s appetite-control system. It fails to stimulate insulin, which in turn fails to suppress ghrelin, or “the hunger hormone,” which then fails to stimulate leptin or “the satiety hormone.” This causes you to eat more and develop insulin resistance.
  • It causes metabolic dysfunction. These include weight gain, abdominal obesity, decreased HDL and increased LDL, elevated blood sugar, elevated triglycerides, and high blood pressure.
  • It increases your uric acid levels. High uric acid levels are a risk factor for heart and kidney disease. In fact, the connection between fructose, metabolic syndrome, and your uric acid is now so clear that your uric acid level can now be used as a marker for fructose toxicity.

So what do you need to do to reduce your sugar intake?

Find hidden sugars and remove them. Once we remove sugar and processed food from diet, immediate changes in blood chemistry result; blood becomes less sticky and more fluid.

The benefits of doing this are:

  • Improved mood
  • Improved mental clarity
  • Improved energy
  • Improved nutrient levels – especially minerals

As you begin to eat clean, whole foods will restore health to the entire body inside and out, increase mineral intake and uptake; reduce excess body weight, remove dangerous stress from organs and skeleton and improve the immune system as sugar and processed foods depress the immune system.

How to start avoiding hidden sugars:

Learn to look for and identify sugars in the foods you currently eat and in the foods you buy. There are hundreds of ingredients that are sugary or sugar based. It’s a big job to familiarize yourself with them but here are a few of the most common sugars and sugar alternatives and how they are listed on a food label:

Added sugar – galactose, lactose, maltose

High fructose corn syrup
Agave nectar
Cane sugar
Cane juice crystals
Brown sugar
Raw sugar
Beet sugar
Blackstrap molasses
Castor sugar   Confectioners’ sugar
Evaporated cane juice
Demara sugar
Refiner’s sugar
Yellow sugar
Granulated sugar
Dextrin Dextrose
Malt syrup
Malt dextrin
Ethyl maltol
Corn syrup and corn syrup solids Rice syrup

Now that you are aware of what to eliminate or avoid, here are some healthy replacement options:

  • Fruit paste or sauce eg unsweetened applesauce
  • Sweet vegetable purées – carrot, sweet potato, tomato
  • Dates – date paste is a wonderful sweet ingredient loaded with fibre
  • Honey
  • Maple syrup

By cutting down or eliminating your sugar intake you can greatly reduce the incidence of disease and your body can safely metabolize at least six teaspoons of added sugar per day. Since most North Americans are consuming over three times that amount, majority of the excess sugar becomes metabolized into body fat – leading to all the debilitating chronic metabolic diseases many people are struggling with.

Dr. Robert Lustig, a professor of Clinical Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology in the University of California

Takeaway Tip: Don’t be fooled by artificial sweeteners either these have their own hidden dangers.