For most, asking them to give up sugar is like asking them to give up breathing – impossible. Sugar is a staple in most people’s diets, whether they realize it or not. It has made it’s way into almost every product on the grocery store shelf and it’s doing more harm than people realize. We now consume more sugar in one drink than most people, a century ago, did in a week. “But why is that so bad,” you may be asking.
Well, the main reason that we should limit sugar is that we simply don’t need it. When it enters the body it gets into the blood fairly rapidly and causes a sudden insulin response from the pancreas. The insulin then tries to clear all the sugar out of the blood stream as quickly as possible, because sugar in blood isn’t good. But if the sugar isn’t immediately needed for energy (which is it’s only function), then it gets stored, as fat.
Sugar is actually the number one cause of fat storage on most people, but the marketing industry has everyone believing sugar’s okay. If you look on any prepackaged product on the shelf and you’ll see giant bold letters proclaiming “fat free,” or “low fat.” But these labels are just misdirection at it’s finest. They have you believing that because it’s fat free it won’t make you fat, which is the furthest thing from the truth.
Next time you’re in the grocery store take a peak at the nutrition label. Sugars are listed under carbohydrate, and usually make up most of it. Next, look down at the ingredient list. Read through and see what order sugar appears. It’s probably within the first three or four. They order ingredients on those lists based on the amount that’s in the product? The first ingredient always makes up the most, and is usually either wheat (another deceptive food) or sugar.
So what will happen if you give up sugar? A lot actually. First, your eating habits will change. No longer will you be at the mercy of your cravings. You’ll actually eat till you’re full, then stop.
Second, you’ll notice sudden weight loss. Not only does sugar turn into fat, but it also causes inflammation and bloating. By cutting it out, you’ll return to your normal body composition and probably drop a pant size or two. Then after all that your energy levels throughout the day will even out and your mood will improve. Ever heard the term “hangry?” It’s what happens when you’re grumpiness and irritability are signs that you’re hungry.
So, wouldn’t you want to lose a couple pounds in the next month and stop the cravings, without having to go to the gym more? Of course you would! But are you ready to? That’s the real question. And most people answer with a no when they really look at what it takes to get there.
Many different excuses have been used over the years, like; it’s too hard, or it takes too much time or it costs too much. Or for some, it’s simply because they’re not in control of what food they eat. Either their parents or loved ones do the shopping. But making changes in our lives is an important part of growing (at any stage in life) and maturing (which sometimes happens much later than expected). And if our loved ones don’t understand that then it’s our job to make them.
Getting to a place where we can feel better and live healthier takes effort. If it were easy then it wouldn’t be worth it.
Below is a complete list of the various kinds of sugar and how they might appear on the ingredients list.
- Disaccharides Alcohol
- Artificial sugar substitutes
- Acesulfame potassium – 200x sweetness (by weight), Nutrinova, E950, FDA Approved 2003
- Alitame – 2,000x sweetness (by weight), Pfizer, Pending FDA Approval
- Aspartame – 160-200x sweetness (by weight), NutraSweet, E951, FDA Approved 1981
- Cyclamate – 30x sweetness (by weight), Abbott, E952, FDA Banned 1969, pending re-approval
- Dulcin – 250x sweetness (by weight), FDA Banned 1950
- Neohesperidine dihydrochalcone – 1,500x sweetness (by weight), E959
- Neotame – 8,000x sweetness (by weight), NutraSweet, FDA Approved 2002
- P-4000 – 4,000x sweetness (by weight), FDA Banned 1950
- Saccharin – 300x sweetness (by weight), E954, FDA Approved 1958
- Sucralose – 600x sweetness (by weight), Tate & Lyle, FDA Approved 1998
Natural sugar substitutes
- Brazzein – Protein, 2,000x sweetness of sucrose (by weight), Exxx
- Curculin – Protein, 550x sweetness (by weight), Exxx
- Erythritol – 0.7x sweetness (by weight), 14x sweetness of sucrose (by food energy), 0.05x energy density of sucrose
- Glycyrrhizin – 50x sweetness (by weight)
- Glycerol – 0.6x sweetness (by weight), 0.55x sweetness (by food energy), 1.075x energy density, E422
- Hydrogenated starch hydrolysates – 0.4x–0.9x sweetness (by weight), 0.5x–1.2x sweetness (by food energy), 0.75x energy density
- Isomalt – 0.45x–0.65x sweetness (by weight), 0.9x–1.3x sweetness (by food energy), 0.5x energy density, E953
- Lactitol – 0.4x sweetness (by weight), 0.8x sweetness (by food energy), 0.5x energy density, E966
- Mabinlin – Protein, 100x sweetness (by weight), Exxx
- Maltitol – 0.9x sweetness (by weight), 1.7x sweetness (by food energy), 0.525x energy density, E965
- Mannitol – 0.5x sweetness (by weight), 1.2x sweetness (by food energy), 0.4x energy density, E421
- Miraculin – Protein, nx sweetness (by weight), Exxx
- Monellin – Protein, 3,000x sweetness (by weight), Exxx
- Pentadin – Protein, 500x sweetness (by weight), Exxx
- Sorbitol – 0.6x sweetness (by weight), 0.9x sweetness (by food energy), 0.65x energy density, E420
- Stevia – 250x sweetness (by weight)
- Tagatose – 0.92x sweetness (by weight), 2.4x sweetness (by food energy), 0.38x energy density
- Thaumatin – Protein, – 2,000x sweetness (by weight), E957
- Xylitol – 1.0x sweetness (by weight), 1.7x sweetness (by food energy), 0.6x energy density, E967