Sugar is the archenemy of anyone who wants to lose weight and maintain a healthy body. Here’s why you should consider cutting down on sugar in your diet.
Fructose makes your liver cry
You probably remember from chem class that half a molecule of table sugar or sucrose is glucose, while the other, fructose.
Any living cell contains glucose. We get it from the breakdown of carbohydrates we consume. It’s further metabolized so our cells can perform their functions.
Fructose, however, has no physiological use and isn’t naturally produced by our bodies. Instead, it’s stored in the liver as glycogen, which can be converted into glucose as needed.
The burden of metabolizing fructose therefore falls on the liver, and excess of it may be detrimental to the organ and may lead to fatty liver disease.
High sugar intake may cause insulin resistance
There are cases when muscle, fat, and liver cells may become unresponsive to insulin. This results in lower absorption of glucose from the bloodstream and into the cells.
The body copes by producing more insulin in order to keep a healthy blood sugar level. As a result, the beta cells of the pancreas may be damaged, unable to keep up with the demand.
Insulin may also remain in the bloodstream due to excess glucose in the cells that blocks its reabsorption. In turn, this promotes higher intake of glucose by the cells.
This condition is precursor to prediabetes, type II diabetes, and syndrome X or the metabolic syndrome. Syndrome X is a condition characterized by symptoms such as high blood sugar, cholesterol level, and blood pressure, which can cause other complications.
Sugar spikes up inflammation
Inflammation is part of the body’s process of fighting infection. Regular and excessive sugar intake, however, can lead to chronic inflammation.
Studies have shown that high blood sugar increases inflammation and negatively affects the immune system. In fact, inflammation is connected to insulin resistance, which is aggravated further by excessive consumption of sugar.
Chronic inflammation also contributes to the development of age-related diseases such as atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, and even cancer.
Think you need to cut down?
Sugar can be addicting. It raises dopamine levels in the brain, creating that euphoric rush. But next time you pick up that candy bar, you might want to think of the repercussions of eating that empty sugar.
Feel free to leave your comment about this post on Why Cutting Down on Sugar is Good for You.
You may also want to check out this blog on Inflammation and How to Prevent It.
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