Sugar: A friend or a foe?
We’re not going to sugarcoat this post for you since it’s too sweet already, so buckle up for a reality check. You have already heard of good carbohydrates and bad carbohydrates, good cholesterol and bad cholesterol. Well the same way sugar could be categorized into good sugar and bad sugar. Contrary to popular belief, sugar is not all that bad for our health in fact it is essential for a healthy lifestyle.
We’re not encouraging you to finish those Diwali sweets in one night, or go all out on the soft drinks. Did you know, that one can of your favourite soft drink is as good as 7 teaspoons of sugar. Children that consume soft drinks are shown to have lesser quantities of milk, depriving them of essentials such as Calcium, Vitamin B12 etc.
Bad sugars or Added sugars including Sucrose are useless in terms of health since they don’t add any nutritional value to our food and pile up on those dreaded calories. Studies show that no more than 10% of your daily calorie intake should constitute of added sugars such as processed food, soft drinks and the desserts you overdose on. All you need is a little supervision and self-control as added sugar can be highly addictive. Junk food and other sugar rich foods release unnatural amounts of Dopamine in the body, that get you hooked on to this bad boy.
Good Sugars or Natural Sugars on the other hand are healthy and much better sources of essential fuel for the body in the form of milk, ripe fruits, honey, maple syrup, whole grains etc. They contain primarily either lactose or fructose which do not cause harm to the body. Along with these sources you get a lot of added benefits as well, such as when you consume sugar in a fruit, you get the water and fiber free!
Quite a steal compared to what the jar of white sugar in your kitchen might have to offer. Speaking of white sugar, for all those of you who think that brown sugar or molasses are healthier than white sugar, I’m sorry to burst your bubble but they have the same useless health values and only differ in tastes.
Sugar is essential for a healthy lifestyle and is the fuel for our cells. Our cells use glucose for energy which is why you’re advised to have Gatorade during marathons. That’s why when our cells don’t get enough glucose they resort to Liposys (Fat Breakdown) for energy. This requires the release of Adrenaline and Cortisol which are the superhero hormones of fight or flight. This is why people consuming less sugar and carbs experience weight loss and rise in energy levels.
However it is detrimental in the long run and has shown to hamper the metabolism, digestion and reproductive systems. Stay safe, eat everything but in the right amounts. Without sugar in your diet, you’’ll become a retard. No seriously, since the brain relies on glucose to function.
So become a sugar sleuth: checking the ingredient list before buying or eating can help you enjoy the good stuff without any guilt and you can avoid too much of what's not-so-good for your health or waistline.
Go natural or go to the dentist!