Cutting Out Processed Sugar
What happens when you cut out processed sugar?
Do you have a sweet tooth? Maybe you enjoy a dessert here and there after a meal or when celebrating with friends. We tend to assume that processed sugar is easily avoided, as long as we don’t reach for the dessert table, but that isn’t always the case. Processed sugar can be found in many foods and beverages that we enjoy and we don’t necessarily consider to be “sweets”. Cutting sugar is part of many diets, due to its problematic nature when it comes to overall health, but what happens when you cut out processed sugar from your diet?
How Much Sugar is too much?
Sugar is hidden in many foods that we consume, even the foods we consider “healthy” such as fruit juices and granola bars. According to the Us.S. Department of Agriculture, an adult shouldn’t consume more than 10% of their calories as added sugars. This would mean if you are consuming 2,000 calories per day, no more than 200 calories of sugar. For perspective, one can of soda has approximately 126 calories of added sugar.
Changes You Will See
When you make the intentional decision to cut out sugar, your body will adjust to the reduction. Cutting out sugar altogether is easier said than done, especially if you find yourself craving sweets and sugary drinks. When you learn the benefits it can have on your body, you may be ready to take a more mindful approach to your sugar intake.
- Your Body’s insulin production
When you consume sugar, your pancreas produces a hormone called insulin. Insulin is what allows sugar to enter your bloodstream. The more sugar you consume, the more insulin is produced by the pancreas. Overconsumption for long periods of time can cause resistance to insulin, thus leading to Type 2 diabetes. When you cut back on sugar, your body is better able to regulate insulin and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Oral Health
Sugar can attract bad bacteria that cause cavities and tooth decay. When the sugar is broken down, the mouth becomes more acidic which can break down tooth enamel. When cutting out sugar, your oral health is no longer battling to avoid any further damage.
- Decreased risk of heart disease
Added sugars are associated with the blood fat known as triglycerides. A build-up of triglycerides can result in heart disease. Heart disease is often associated with being overweight or obese, which in turn, can be mitigated in part by controlling your sugar intake.
Help with the Change
Whatever reason you choose to cut out processed sugar, it is a great step in improving your overall health. Changes in your body won’t be instant when you begin to cut out sugar, but over time, you will begin to see the benefits to your overall health. If you need help getting started or understanding the effects sugar can have on the body, talk to your doctor today.