Sugar Damage Health
Eliminating Sugar Could be the Best Tummy Control
We all have heard a version of the old adage a second on your lips will put a pound on your hips. Recent articles on aging have developed a new adage; eating foods that are sugar laced creates wrinkles on your face.
As a child, coming from a family of five, we never had a great deal of sugar or sweets in the house, and when we did, it was very quick to eaten. As I became established in my own household, I discovered that I did have a sweet tooth. My lifestyle was one of meals followed with dessert. Breakfast followed with éclairs and whip cream or yodels, Lunch followed with chocolate pudding and whip cream or Oreo cookies. Dinner followed with more chocolate cake and ice cream. In hind sight, I can see that I was addicted to sugar. However, at the time I never thought that I had a problem with sugar nor did I know the consequences of consuming so much sugar.
It wasn’t until I was over forty, and started attending college to get my degree as a Holistic Practitioner, that I discovered the negative impact of sugar on my face and body. I was in a nutrition class where the instructor was looking at each person’s face, skin and body type and analyzing what food challenges we had based on his observations. When he came to me, I was prepared to hear that I looked the epitome of health. Unfortunately, I was mistaken and very surprised at what he had to say. As he looked at my face, he noticed the hyper pigmentation throughout my skin and the deep liver lines between my brows. My body frame is small and I have a pretty good metabolism, but I tended to have a little puffy stomach. It was clear to him from these signs that I was probably allergic to sugar, and unless I made adjustments to my diet, I would probably become a type 2 diabetic and develop problems with my adrenals, liver, thyroid and heart. He asked me if I woke up between 1 and 3 at night. Once again, I was amazed at how he could know that. Since that time, I have learned the language of the body when it comes to your life and your health.
My instructor recommended that I get my blood tested for food allergies to see what items I should eliminate from my diet. It was hard for me to fathom being allergic to these foods. How could I be? I did not break out in a rash or develop problems breathing after consuming them so what were the signs of this allergy? I then learned that an allergic reaction may be subtle. You may develop mucous in your nose, throat or intestines. You may have the hiccups, have food cravings for the foods you are allergic to, wake up in the middle of the night, or have headaches and bloating in the body
Out of curiosity, I had the tests done. The results indicated that I was allergic to processed sugar, beets, honey and cheese. After learning that I had an ah-ha moment. Every time I had a Caesar salad, my nose would start running. I always thought that the restaurant was too cold, now I know it was an allergic reaction to the cheese. Cutting out the cheese was easy though, for the most part I never really liked cheese. The sugar, well that was a way of life for me. However, in the interest of my health I was determined to drop it cold turkey.
What I discovered, was that it was not as easy as I thought to eliminate sugar. It was not just a case of not eating chocolate pudding or cake. It meant that I no longer could go to the grocery store and just pick up any food items. I now needed to read the labels. How hard could that be? After all, I mostly shop the outer aisles of meat, dairy fresh fruit and vegetables. Little did I know how many items I picked up had sugar in them. My first sugar free trip to the grocery store took over 3 hours. Try and find a tomato sauce without sugar or honey.
You can pretty much rule out all jars of tomato sauce. Fortunately, I found Muir Glen Organic tomato sauce. The only ingredient is organic tomatoes. Now, that cannot be said of their jars of flavored tomatoes sauces. These do contain either sugar or honey. That was just one item of many to contain sugar. What about bread, cereal, jam, flavored creamers, condiments and salad dressing.
Within a week of eliminating the sugar from my diet, my puffy tummy went down, and I stopped waking up in the middle of the night. Yes, my skin, body and face were happier without sugar. Sugar was not right for me, and to tell you the truth, once I made a few changes, it was pretty easy to give it up. The good news is that I discovered that being processed sugar free does not mean giving up dessert or chocolate. There are many alternatives, alternatives that do not need to include aspartame or other chemical sweeteners that I will discuss later in this newsletter. Before that, it is important to understand that eliminating or reducing sugar is not just about food allergies, it is also about minimizing the negative impact that sugar has on all of our bodies.
Sugar not only increases our waistline, it also ages our skin, weakens our immune system and allows disease in our body, while you should read the full article, here are some quick links to understanding sugar:
How Sweet It Is!
The average American consumes an astounding 2-3 pounds of sugar each week, which is not surprising considering that highly refined sugars in the forms of sucrose more commonly known as table sugar, dextrose or corn sugar, and high-fructose corn syrup are being processed into so many foods.
Prior to the turn of this century (1887-1890), the average consumption was only 5 lbs. per person per year! Today the average American consumes 2 – 3 pounds per week!
American consumes more than 152 pounds of added sugar each year. This number does not include the natural sugars we ingest from foods such as fruit. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, that’s about 40 pounds more per person than we ate just 50 years ago.
Finding Sugar on Food Labels
Sugar can be found on the food label under total carbohydrate. Sugar is identified as sugar or sucrose which is a simple carbohydrate derived from sugar cane and sugar beets. Sucrose’s most important properties are its water solubility and its sweetness.
You can find different types of sugar under the ingredient list. Other simple carbohydrates or refined sugars on the market include fructose, glucose, high fructose corn syrup, lactose, and maltose. Keep in mind that no form of sugar is healthy, so know that any word that ends in “ose” is a form of sugar, including dextrose, galactose etc. Also watch for “monosaccharides” or “disaccharides”, or various “syrups” which are also fancy names for sugar. Of course you are sure to find the more identifiable refined sugars in the ingredient list such as confectioners’ sugar, powdered sugar, maple syrup tubinado sugar and mannitol sugar.
Keep in mind that the ingredients listed first listed on the ingredient label are the highest amount for that particular food item. It never is a good sign if a sugar is the first or second item listed.
According to the USDA’s Food Pyramid guidelines some of the more popular foods in our daily diet contain most of the added sugars in American diets. They include:
- Regular soft drinks
- Fruit drinks, such as fruitades and fruit punch
- Milk-based desserts and products, such as ice cream, sweetened yogurt, and sweetened milk
- Grain products such as sweet rolls and cinnamon toast.
- Condiments like ketchup, mayonnaise, relish and salad dressing
- Processed foods like bread, flavored rice, peanut butter, tomato sauce, breakfast cereal, microwave meals
Sugar … a Not So Sweet History
The reasons to eliminate or at very lease minimize the amount of processed sugar in your diet is not new.
In 1910, George Gould, MD of Ithaca, New York published as article in the Medical Reviews of Reviews. In this article Dr Gould states “As to long-continued morbid habits of diet, especially in the case of children and city-dwellers; with the sedentary, in those with weakened nervous and nutritional systems, when coexisting with other diseases, or in the cases of other active and co-operating causes of disease. For several years it has been growing clearer to me that many patients do not get well because they live too exclusively on sugary and starchy foods. With greater activity and the resisting power of youth, children exhibit the morbid tendency by excessive “nervousness.” denutrition, ease-of-becoming ill, and by many ague and warning symptoms. I have asked the parents of such children to stop them in their use of all sweets, and most starches and almost immediately there was a most gratifying disappearance of the “nervousness,” fickleness of appetite, “colds,” and vague manifold ailments.”
In 1938, the only laboratory animal that could contract polio by experimental inoculation was the monkey. All other laboratory animals were completely resistant to the polio virus. The rabbit is one of these resistant animals. Without knowing the blood sugar range in the monkey and rabbit, it was suspected that the blood sugar in the monkey reached lower levels than in the rabbit. These suspicions were found to have a basis in fact through the investigations of Drs. Jungeblut and Resnick of Columbia University who studied blood sugar levels in monkeys, and through the investigations of Drs. du Vigneaud and Karr of Cornell University who studied blood sugar levels in rabbits. In monkeys, blood sugar values as low as 50 mg. were observed, whereas in the rabbit, values below 100 mg. were never observed. In numerous determinations made on rabbits I have never obtained values below 100 mg.
It was therefore concluded that the susceptibility of the monkey to the polio virus was due to the fact that its blood sugar fell to subnormal values, and that the resistance of the rabbit might be associated with the fact that its blood sugar never fell below 100 mg, and that at this concentration cellular oxidation of glucose in the nervous system and other organs would be maintained at such a level as to enable the cells to protect themselves against invasion by the virus. Physiologists have stated that the normal blood sugar level of 80 mg. holds true for all mammals The next step was to lower the blood sugar of the rabbit to subnormal values with insulin injections, and then inoculate the rabbit with polio virus. This was done and it was found that the rabbits became infected and developed the disease. The details of these experiments were published in the American Journal of Pathology, January, 1941.
In 1951, Benjamin P. Sandler, M.D. published a book titled Diet Prevents Polio. In this book, Dr Sandler indicated that a few of his “patients had had polio in childhood. Observations of these patients over a long period of time led me to suspect that their susceptibility to infection was possibly due to their poor diet with its high sugar and starch content. Their increased resistance to infection with a better diet confirmed this suspicion. It then occurred to me that their susceptibility to polio could be explained on a similar dietary basis. Specifically, I suspected that children and adults contracted polio because of low blood sugar brought on by a diet containing sugar and starch. I reasoned that the polio virus was able to cross tissue barriers, reach the brain and spinal cord, invade the nerve cells, damage or destroy them and cause paralysis. And I further reasoned that if the blood sugar never fell below 80 mg polio could never result.”
My nutritionist, who comes from a family that has a history of diabetes, firmly believes that sugar weakens the immune system of the body and that excess sugar consumption will create disease. He is quick to point out that while Americans have reduced fat intake, heart disease continues to rise. He alleges that the curve of the increase in heart disease matches the rate of sugar consumption over the years.
Nancy Appleton, Ph.D. author of the book Lick the Sugar Habit, has developed a list of 124 Ways Sugar Can Ruin Your Health. It would appear that while we’ve been so concerned with fats, we’ve almost forgotten about sugar. Although too much fat in the diet can lead to health problems like obesity, heart disease, and premature death, sugar consumption can be much more hazardous to the health. Diets high in sugar may promote, or complicate, health problems. Many consumers started to gain weight when they began purchasing “fat free” dessert items that were high in sugar. If you’re counting calories, you want every calorie to count. And that’s where sugar falls short: It offers calories but nothing else. The sugar in a muffin or a cappuccino will take a big chunk out of your calorie quota for the day without moving you closer to your daily goals for minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients. If you eat too much of the sweet stuff, you’ll have trouble getting enough healthy nutrients without going overboard on calories.
Sugar is far more fattening for most people than fat is. The leading source of calories for kids and teens is from carbonated soft drinks and juice containing high-fructose corn syrup and sugar, and as a result they are becoming obese and developing type 2 diabetes at an alarming rate. In liquid form, sugars are very problematic as usually they are consumed as extra calories as opposed to substituting for solid foods.
High fructose corn syrup is a crystalline fructose or hydrolized fructose product that is manufactured in the lab (genetically modified corn) that came onto the market in about 1970, and because it is so inexpensive, it is used as a preservative in all kinds of foods one would not expect. I have even noticed it as an ingredient in those touted-as-healthy low-calorie frozen dinners! It is now everywhere in processed foods, including crackers, baked goods, salad dressings, ketchup, medications, and obviously, soft drinks. High-fructose corn syrup is particularly dangerous, because unlike sucrose which raises blood-glucose levels, HFC syrup converts into triglycerides and adipose tissue within an hour of ingestion.
Turn Back the Face of Time 10 Years
Being called sugar face and sweet cheeks may no longer be a term of endearment; according to Dr Fredric Brandt new book 10 Minutes/10 Years: Your Definitive Guide to a Beautiful and Youthful Appearance, sugar is the number one enemy to a youthful appearance. “In a nutshell, sugar hastens the degradation of elastin and collagen, both key skin proteins. In other words, it actively ages you,” says Dr Brandt, who counts Madonna, Rupert Everett, Cher and Ellen Barkin among his clients.
Dr Brandt believes that by simply reducing your sugar intake, you can turn back the clock by ten years and improve the texture, tone and radiance of your skin. He saw a remarkable change in his own skin when he eliminated sugar from his diet. Not only did he drop 20lb, but, he says, within ten days he saw an increased glow, radiance and elasticity in his face. And within a year, his body had changed completely as well. I noticed the same exact things in my own body as well. The hyper pigmentation started to reverse. I was sleeping through the night and that little puffy muffin top of a stomach subsided.
The Not So Sweet Signs of Aging
Foods with refined sugar can produce hyperglycemia which causes a sudden rush in the blood sugar levels. This promotes inflammation and promotes skin aging. Sugar and carbohydrates converted to sugar have a specific detrimental effect upon collagen causing cross-linking and a loss of elasticity. The result is the promotion of sagging skin and deeper wrinkles. It is estimated that approximately 50% of all skin aging and skin damage is caused by sugar-induced hyperglycemia.
Dr Brandt describes the full process like this.
“The sugar triggers a process in the body called glycation. This is where the sugar molecules bind to your protein fibres – those wonderfully springy and resilient collagen and elastin fibres – which are the building blocks of skin. “Imagine that your collagen is your skin’s mattress and the elastin fibres are the coils holding it together. The sugar attacks these fibres, making them less elastic and more brittle so they break.
“The result is that your once-youthful skin starts to sag and look old.” But it gets worse. The glycation process causes these proteins to mutate, creating harmful new molecules called Advanced Glycation End products (AGEs, an appropriate acronym, because it ages our faces), which accumulate and cause further inflammation and damage to your collagen and elastin. If you have normal, healthy collagen and elastin, your skin will snap back to its original position after you smile. But if your collagen and elastin has been made brittle by glycation and so is prone to breaking, your skin can’t snap back. That’s when fine lines and wrinkles appear – and they don’t go away.
Truly Sugar Free
There is no official Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) or Daily Values for sugar. However, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) advises adults who eat a 2,000-calorie diet to limit consumption of sugar to about 40 grams (10 teaspoons) of added sugars per day.
The 10 Percent Rule
According to the World Health Organization, no more than 10 percent of calories should come from added sweeteners. This advice is in line with the long-standing recommendations of the U.S. Department of Agriculture food pyramid, called for a maximum of 12 teaspoons of sugar (48 grams) in a 2,200-calorie diet, which translates to roughly 9 percent of daily calories.
In a diet composed of 2,000 daily calories, that would amount to about 200 calories, or 50 grams of sugar. Now you have another reason to check nutrition labels. Thanks to them, it’s easy to find out the sugar content of common foods from candy bars to breakfast cereals. Those labels are definitely worth a read because the numbers can be surprising: A single bowl of Frosted Mini Wheat contains three teaspoons (12 grams) of sugar; some raisin bran contains 20 grams; a 32-ounce sports drink can contain 19 teaspoons (76 grams) of sugar, and a 20-ounce Fruitopia fruit drink can pack nearly 18 teaspoons (71 grams) of sugar — nearly one and a half times as much as you should have in one day.
Though we should limit added sugar intake to 10 teaspoons (160 calories) or less per day, the average American eats at least twice that and most teenagers eat up to 35 teaspoons of sugar per day!
Ten teaspoons a day would convert to approximately 38 pounds of sugar a year. This would indicate that the average American is consuming more than four times the recommended amount of sugar each year.
Sugars Simple Math
1 teaspoon = 4 grams
1 Tablespoon = 3 teaspoons
1 teaspoon = 16 calories
Daily Sugar less than 10 teaspoons a day
To convert grams on Food Labels to teaspoons just divide the number of grams by 4.
Eliminate Sugar … Reverse the Signs of Aging
We all are willing to spend money on skincare products to help reverse the signs of aging. However, the best way to fight the ravages of time is to begin with what we put into our bodies. Americans have become more aware of what they eat, and how it might affect their health. Concerns about the safety of the food supply are on the rise, and increasing nutritional awareness has led to an increase in vegetarian, organic, and health-food options in supermarkets. “Lite” food is in, and indulgence is out. But are Americans practicing what they preach? A closer look at American dietary trends reveals that parts of the American diet are still lacking in nutritional quality, despite consumer demand for healthier options.
Because sugar is addictive, many companies consistently look for new ways to hide more and more sugars to processed foods. Added sugars are found largely in junk foods, but even healthier forms of processed foods regularly contain added sugars. To make matters worse, these processed foods tend to squeeze healthier foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, out of the diet. It’s probably best to try avoiding processed foods as much as possible.
Fructose, the natural form of sugar found in fruit, is sweeter than refined sugar (sucrose), so you should be able to satisfy your desire for something sweet and eat something healthy at the same time. While eating plenty of fruit is healthy, fruit juice is much like refined sugar, so limit it to one cup daily. Honey has slightly more nutrition than sugar, but is still a calorie dense sweetener much like other forms of refined sugar. Likewise, brown sugar is simply sugar with molasses added, and is little better than white sugar in nutritional terms. While artificial sweeteners are sometimes recommended for those wanting to lose weight, they may be even less healthy than refined sugar. It’s best to simply retrain your taste buds to appreciate less sweet flavors.
The more sugar you consume, the more you want; the less sugar you consume, the less you want. Replace sugar with healthier forms of sweeteners (honey, maple syrup, molasses, fruit juice, etc.), and eventually reduce consumption of these. Consume a diet high in complex carbohydrates. Overcome your sugar desire with natural sugars in fruit.
For me, eliminating sugar meant finding sugar free, options that did not contain aspartame, sucrose, NutraSweet or Equal. I found somersweet. Somersweet is made from a delicious blend of natural, sweet fibers. With somersweet, you can finally enjoy fabulous, sweet, guilt-free treats! It is five times sweeter than sugar and you can cook and bake with it. So I can enjoy homemade cakes, pies, ice cream and chocolate pudding with whip cream. I use to put 1 and a half cups of sugar in my chocolate pudding, now I put less than 1 tablespoon of somersweet. I also found a local candy store that makes all of their own sugar free candies. All candies are safe for diabetics, all natural and contain no refined sugars. So going sugar free does not mean giving up foods you like it just means modifying what you eat.
In addition to the elimination of sugars, you can use some external assisters with skincare products and spa services that will expedite repairs. Eliminate the sugar, and increase the amount of anti oxidants and vitamins you consume so your body will be able to repair any damage. Keep in mind that as we age the volume of our digestive enzymes declines, reducing our body’s ability to digest and absorb foods. Supplements such as green tea, vitamin C, zinc, hydrocotyl (centella asiatica / gotu kola), pomegranate, grape seed, alpha-lipoic acid, etc. are loaded with antioxidants and can protect the body from free radical damage. This becomes an easy method of increasing the body’s antioxidant supply when foods and their digestion may not provide the desired volume of antioxidants. In addition, you may find it helpful to take a gram or two a day of omega 3 fish oils, to reduce the sugar cravings.
Anti Aging Spa Treatments To Repair Sugar Damage
Skin Lightening Facial
This unique treatment incorporates the use of mild galvanic currents for deep penetration of active lightening gel to inhibit melanin formation, therefore preventing darkening of the skin tone and gradually unifies and lightens the pigmentation, revealing a youthful, supple, and luminous complexion without irritation. For optimum results, a series of this treatment combined with Microdermabrasion and home-care is highly recommended.
(Featured on Oprah and the Today Show) If you are seeking the elixir of youth the LumiLift is complete photo rejuvenation for facial treatment. A non-invasive Micronized current stimulates the muscle to detoxify the skin, lift and tone facial contour and sagging neck, and HF polarized currents smooth out the wrinkles and tighten the skin while pulsating LED lights are penetrated through the skin to increase collagen production to restore plump baby-smooth skin. Resulting in youthful, glowing complexion. Skin feels firmer and tighter. This is a perfect lifting facial for immediate results without downtime. Recommended with Microdermabrasion for exceptional results and a series of treatments to stabilize skin improvements.
Once you have cut back or eliminated refine sugars, you will find that your skin, body and mind will feel better. Like me, you may find that you sleep better and you sleep through the night awakening refreshed and full of energy. You may also find that you will not get sick as easily as you once did. The hyper pigmentation will begin to fade and the natural glow of your skin will come back. Less sugar means less weight, less wrinkles, less health issues and a happier sweeter life filled with sweet dreams. What could be more Spavelous than that! Make sure you contact the spas near you to see what anti-aging face and body treatments they offer and check out some of the beverages that can assist you like Chi Tea and Radiance. Who needs soda when you can have a great tasting nutritional anti oxidant?