Why Is Sugar Bad?
We know now that food is information to our bodies. We either feed health or feed disease.
Diet plays a direct role with levels of inflammation in our bodies.
The worse choice we can make when choosing what to eat is processed foods. Processed foods are highly inflammatory. The reason for it is that when we process carbohydrates, the fiber is eliminated together with phytonutrients, leaving only the starch – which is sugar.
Two typical ingredients of the modern diet that cause inflammation are refined carbohydrates (sugar, flour, processed cereal foods, fruit juices) and refined vegetable oils (soybean, sunflower oil). They are the ingredients in almost all processed foods nowadays.
They do not only disturb our metabolism, but they are highly addictive! Refined carbs are addictive. They are there for us to eat more and more, buy more and more.
Researchers have found that sugar is more addictive than cocaine. According to a study from 2013 released at PubMed, sugar and sweet reward can not only substitute to addictive drugs, like cocaine, but can even be more rewarding and attractive. At the neurobiological level, the neural substrates of sugar and sweet reward appear to be more robust than those of cocaine.
Processed foods, which are high in simple sugars, simple carbohydrates, unhealthy fats and salt; contain all the things that damage the arteries, which are the highways in which the nutrients are carried to the entire body, causing oxidation, inflammation and dysregulation in glucose and fat metabolism.
Diets rich in processed foods will, over time, increase insulin resistance – which is inflammatory in our bodies. Leading to metabolic dysfunction in about 5-10 years, to diabetes type 2 in 10-15 years, fatty liver, kidney failure, cardiovascular events. Above that, inflammation will also reach the brain, setting up the stage for cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s.
It is not only the amount of carbs that we consume; but the type of carbs we consume will impact our health in different ways. There are good carbs and there are bad carbs. Not all carbs are the same! The good ones are rich in fiber, with protective plant substances, these ones will not provoke a fast spike in our blood glucose, they are high in nutrients and vitamins. Bad carbs are high in calories and low in nutrients, such as pasta, white bread, soda drinks.
Rapidly digested simple carbs have a profound effect on blood sugar. Nutrition researchers found a way to measure how fast is this effect: it is called glycemic index. Foods that cause a rapid raise in blood sugar, such as white bread and sodas, have a very high glycemic index.
For good health, we shall focus on low glycemic foods. They are digested more slowly and keep blood sugar levels steadier. One example of low glycemic index carbs are above ground leafy vegetables. Foods that have low glycemic index are also good to our microbiome.
When we avoid sugars, we avoid the high amount of glucose that enters our circulation, causing oxidation and inflammation. As soon as you cut off processed foods/bad carbs, your body starts responding immediately by reducing insulin resistance, reducing inflammation.
Our body has this amazing wisdom to get well as soon as we give it the information to do so.
Take good care of yourself!