I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings in the Christmas season, but it’s true—sugar is not good for your body. It’s an inflammatory. If you want to reduce the aching in your joints, tendons, and cartilage, stop drowning in sugar.
I’m proof positive of this. I’ve done a pretty good job of limiting my sugar intake until the holiday season arrived. Most notably, last Wednesday my wife and I spent the day baking sugar cookies, peanut butter kiss cookies, cupcakes, and baked almonds drenched first in cinnamon and sugar. I designated myself the official taste-tester for all of it.
The immediate result—after the temporary burst of pleasure for my taste buds—within twelve hours, my lower back and joints stiffened up, and the bursitis flared up in my left shoulder sending me running for double doses of ibuprophen.
I eliminated the sugar and within two days, and the aching went away. Imagine that.
So why do we do this kind of damage to our bodies? The first answer is ignorance of how much sugar is responsible for our deteriorating health. Second is that we don’t want to hear it and we try to ignore it.
Sugar is one of the most addictive substances on the planet. And food manufacturers know it. They know the only part of the body that benefits from sugar is the tip of the tongue. That’s why they throw high fructose corn syrup into everything. Once sugar is past the tongue, it’s destructive to the harmony of the body.
In 1890, the average consumption of sugar was only five pounds per person per year. Cancer and cardiovascular disease was virtually unknown in the early 1900’s. Today the average American consumes two to three pounds of sugar each week. These two diseases are at the top of the list now.
Where does all the sugar come from? Read the labels on bread, breakfast cereals, ketchup, peanut butter, mayonnaise, spaghetti sauce, and microwavable meals. You’ll find they all contain processed sugars in the forms of sucrose (table sugar), dextrose (corn sugar), and high-fructose corn syrup.
When consumed, sugar is absorbed immediately into the bloodstream, stimulating the pancreas to secrete insulin to drop those blood-sugar levels. Increased insulin inhibits the release of growth hormones which depresses the immune system. Rapid fluctuations in blood-sugar cause stress on the body.
(Corrected from original post): Honey is a natural alternative to sugar. It’s redeeming quality is that it possesses healing attributes and doesn’t spike the blood-sugar levels. Honey’s undesirable quality is that it has the highest calorie content of all sugars with 65 calories/tablespoon, compared to the 48 calories/tablespoon found in table sugar. It also decays teeth faster than table sugar.
Here is a list of ways sugar can affect your health:
– suppression of the immune system, weakens defenses against bacterial infection
– contribute to hyperactivity, anxiety, and depression
– affects on children: difficulty with concentration, drowsiness, decreased activity, crabbiness, raise adrenaline levels, eczema
– raises triglycerides, raise bad cholesterol (LDL), lower good cholesterol (HDL)
– kidney damage
– coronary and cardiovascular heart disease, hypertension
– mineral deficiencies and interferes with absorption
– tooth decay, periodontal disease
– speed the aging process, weight gain, wrinkles
– diabetes, osteoporosis
– food allergies, toxemia during pregnancy
– increase the body’s fluid retention
– headaches, including migraines
– increases risk of blood clots and strokes
All these conditions means the harmony within your body is being ruined by an excess intake of sugar. These conditions hurt and they cost money you could be spending on vacations in the Caribbean.
Having said all that, how do you bring harmony to your body? Be kind to yourself. Drastically limit your consumption of sugar. There are very good tasting alternatives. I’ll try to find some for my next post.
Yet you have to be motivated to want good health. Print the list of sugars effects and put it on your refrigerator. Just keep saying to yourself, “Sugar is poison to my body. Sugar is poison to my body. Sugar is poison to my body.”
And don’t keep supplies of sweets in your home. It’s addictive. It’s bad for you. It’s like putting cocaine in the drawer of an addict or a bottle of booze in the cabinet of an alcoholic. Don’t put it in your pantry or cupboards for times when you crave a snack. Replace it with fruits, nuts, and veggies. Processed sugar is toxic. It destroys the harmony of your body. Believe it.