- Diets high in sugar can cause inflammation in the body: A diet that’s high in processed food and added sugar can eliminate the beneficial bacteria in the gut. This leads to a viscous cycle as our bad bacteria feed of sugar, when you feed them they grow and sugar cravings increase.
- Increased vulnerability of high blood sugar and diabetes. High sugar foods/ diet affects the microbiome ability to regulate blood sugar
- Too much sugar can reduce beneficial bacteria leading to a leaky gut syndrome. An increase of pathogenic bacteria, which is the species of microorganisms that cause diseases, can lead to a condition known as dysbiosis. An increase of this type of bacteria causes changes to the internal mucosal barrier of the intestine.
On average women are consuming around 25 plus tsp of sugar a day.
This could be refined sugars, unrefined sugars or even seemingly healthier alternatives i.e. honey or fruit.
While there are some lower fructose sugars and natural alternatives to refined white sugar what we need to remember is that..
The chemical composition of sugar- whether it's in a mango or a chocolate bar remains the same in your body. Regardless of the type it is very addictive.
When you are trying to reduce your sugar intake, sometimes the best way to do this is to go cold turkey for a short period of time. Mainly because even consuming healthier alternatives still has that sweetness factor and contributes to the addictive nature that is so common of sugar.
Anyone with a compromised system simply can't afford to have their stress hormones (adrenaline and cortisol), their neurotransmitter levels (dopamine) or their insulin levels tipped off balance by sugar.
To properly quit sugar or reduce your intake, you need to be aware of hidden sugars in labels. Take the time to pause when you are shopping and read labels. On labels, where it says 'sugars', it's referring to all sugar- glucose, fructose and lactose.
Here are some label reading guidelines:
- If sugar is the first or second ingredient, there is a big issues. Labels always list things with the ingredient used most, first.
- look out for other sugars in the list: fruit pulp, fruit puree, agave, honey, fructose, maple syrup, anything ending with 'ose' is a sugar i.e fructose, sucrose, lactose, maltodextrose, dextrose, palm sugar, coconut sugar, syrups i.e. corn syrup, malt syrup, caramel, maltitol, etc.
- scan over to the 'per 100 g' column and scroll down to 'sugar' (under total carbohydrates). If it list 30 g of sugar, this means the product contains 30% or a third, sugar.
- salt free products contain less sugar (sugar is added to salted products, ironically to counteract the salt)
- Always choose full fat. Low fat foods always have added sugar
- You want to aim for less than 3-6g of sugar per 100g or 100ml