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The 6 Ways Your Sugar Intake is Hurting Your Health

By Krista Elliott

Sugar. Sweet sweet sugar. It's a baking staple that makes our food taste luscious and decadent. Who can resist a big piece of Mom's homemade apple pie, or a piece of melt-in-your-mouth chocolate?

It's no secret that sugar can be found in the treats we eat, like cookies, and in some beverages that we drink, such as soda pop, but we tend to forget that it's also found in many other items in our diet. Some of these foods may be natural, and may in fact be good for us overall, but unfortunately, they're still high in sugar.

What are the risks of excess sugar intake?

  • Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes - Too much sugar affects insulin levels, and contributes to weight gain, which can lead to diabetes. 

  • Liver Problems - All the sugar you eat gets sent to the organ that filters it: Your liver. This severely taxes the organ, leading to potential liver damage.

  • Weight Issues - Sugary foods are usually high in calories.

  • Malnutrition - If you're filling up on sweets instead of good, nourishing food, you may not get all the vitamins and minerals you need.

  • Dental Issues - A sugary diet feeds the bacteria in the mouth, leading to cavities and foul breath.

  • Inflamed Skin - Eating too much sugar can lead to inflammation, which may contribute to sagging skin and wrinkles. It can also exacerbate skin conditions like acne and rosacea.

You're Sweet Enough Already

So, how can we eliminate, or at least reduce the amount of sugar that we consume day to day?

  • Read labels before purchasing anything processed. You might be shocked at how much sugar there is in condiments, breads, and healthy-looking cereals. 

  • If looking for a sweet treat, have a piece of fruit. Yes, they contain some sugar, but at least they provide more nutrition than baked goods or candy. Limit the serving size, however; choose the more satisfying raw fruit over juices or dried fruit. 

  • If you do bake, experiment with lowering the amount of sugar you use, especially for items like bread or pastry, where sweetness isn't a huge feature anyway. 

  • Eat balanced meals throughout the day, so your blood sugar remains stable and your body doesn't end up looking for a quick energy fix. Choose healthy snacks to ward off cravings.

  • Choose water to drink over sodas and other flavored drinks. The amount of sugar in soda pop, sports drinks, and energy drinks is downright shocking. 

  • Don't bring sweet treats into the house. If it's in the house, it's going to get eaten, but if you have to get up off the sofa at 10 p.m. to go get that ice cream, you may decide that it's not worth it.

I'm not so sure if little girls are made from sugar and spice and everything nice, but your health is definitely a lot nicer without all of that sugar.

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic.

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