Replacing Refined Sugars with Natural Sugars
The average American now consumes 175 pounds of sugar per year! That's 46 teaspoons a day! If we pretend that sugar actually had some benefits, eating one-half pound every day would not seem like such a bad idea. But the truth is that sugar has absolutely no nutritional value whatsoever. Not only does it totally lack nutrients, but when you eat sugar it actually robs your body of nutrients-- vitamins, minerals and even enzymes.
Sure sugar may be temporarily pleasing to the taste buds, but the rest of the body suffers for it. The sad thing is that most people are not aware of the devastating effects that excess sugar consumption has on the body.
Who has time for breakfast?
Eating a typical high carb breakfast or skipping it all together can have a major impact on the rest of your day. Here's why: Blood sugar (glucose) is the fuel for every single cell in your body. So naturally you want your fuel supply to be constant all day long. Eating balanced meals at regular intervals throughout the day is necessary to maintain this balance. Breakfast is important because it lays the foundation for the rest of the day. Typical breakfast foods--cold cereal, bagels, donuts, pancakes, waffles, or even oatmeal with sugar, fruit, toast with jam, and fruit juice--are all high in sugars and simple carbohydrates which cause the blood sugar to spike up and then crash.
The morning crash
The "crash" actually has a medical word for it--hypoglycemia. It is a state of low blood sugar, not actually a disease. When your blood sugar drops too low (after eating a high sugar, high carb meal) or stays too low (after eating nothing at all) many symptoms can occur. The first symptoms to set in are usually mental difficulties, because the brain requires a lot of fuel to do its job. So you may have trouble concentrating or processing information, being forgetful, or feeling mentally dull. Other symptoms include anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, irritable (especially when hungry), depression, crying spells, addictive behavior and cravings for sweets or starches. And, of course, if your fuel supply drops too low, fatigue will obviously be a factor. Many people rely on caffeine to pick themselves up when they crash, creating a "tired-wired" feeling. Many are not aware that the caffeine creates further problems by weakening the adrenal glands which produce hormones that help your body deal with stress.
Lunch on the go
It's common for many people to rush through lunch, grabbing something quick and convenient, basically whatever it takes to make the hungry feeling go away. Convenience foods are high in refined carbohydrates, which not only perpetuate the up-and-down cycle of the blood sugar roller coaster, but also weaken the immune system. Studies have shown that the ingestion of 100-gram portions of carbohydrates, such as glucose, fructose, sucrose, honey, and orange juice, all significantly reduced the ability of neutrophils to engulf and destroy bacteria. These effects started less that 30 minutes after ingestion and lasted for over five hours. Eating sugar throughout the day is a constant assault on the immune system.
Even if you don't think you eat a lot of sugar, you'd be surprised at how quickly 100 grams can add up. Just 10 gum drops, three pancakes with syrup, four pretzel rods and a pop, or even a "healthy" meal like oatmeal with raisins, a banana, and a glass of orange juice, are all well over 100 grams each!
The afternoon crash
Ever feel that slump in the middle of the afternoon? You know, when you're so exhausted the only thing you can think about is taking a nap. This is the time when most people go in search of some caffeine and sugar to pick themselves up quickly--especially at work because falling asleep at your desk doesn't go over really well with your boss! The problem with the quick "pick-me-up" is that in no time your blood sugar crashes down again. "What goes up quickly, comes down quickly" applies to your blood sugar as well as other things in life!
These "pick-me-up" convenient snack foods are high in refined carbohydrates, such as white flour and white sugar, which rob the body of enzymes, minerals and vitamins, especially B vitamins. B vitamins are essential for proper brain and nervous system function. A deficiency in B vitamins includes symptoms like depression, anxiety, panic attacks, heart palpitations, and muscle weakness and tenderness, to name a few.
Who feels like cooking dinner?
I'm sure at one time or another, possibly every day of your life, you have felt like the woman in our cartoon; let's call her Suzie. Suzie has deprived her body of the proper nutrients and fuel it needs to do its job. It's no wonder that she, just like millions of other Americans, feels so exhausted by the end of the day. So when she comes home from work, taking the time to prepare a nourishing meal for herself and her family is probably the last thing on her mind. The problem is that now Suzie's poor eating habits--and all the problems caused by poor eating habits--are being passed on to her children. So after loading up on a convenient high-carb meal, Suzie, as well as the rest of the family, is likely to experience symptoms of low blood sugar, creating an evening full of mood swings, tension and chaos.
Why can't I sleep?
At the end of a long day of exhausting your body with a poor diet, sleep couldn't come soon enough. But for those who have sugar-handling problems, falling asleep and staying asleep can be quite a challenge. The purpose of sleep is to heal and repair, and the body requires fuel for this work. So if your body doesn't have enough fuel to do its job, chances are you'll find yourself just lying there in bed, unable to fall into a deep sleep no matter how exhausted you may feel. If staying asleep is the problem, you've simply run out of fuel, so you find yourself staring at the clock at 2:57 A.M. unable to go back to sleep. Not only does a lack of sleep further weaken your immune system, but it also causes an even deeper level of fatigue, weakness, anxiety and nervousness.
This is an example of what can occur during a typical day in the life of an American who eats the standard American diet. And this is just one day. Over time, this pattern can seriously affect the way that we think and feel, and ultimately our overall health. It's much easier to enjoy life when you're healthy! Before we can build good health, we have to stop doing the things that destroy it--eliminating white sugar is a great start!
The following program will help you replace refined sugar with natural sugars, one step at a time.
The above opinionated views and information serves to educated and informed consumer . The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. .It should not replaced professional advise and consultation. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions
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