In those conversations I see regarding diet and fitness sugar has got quite a bad name. In fact, some are calling for the government to step in and regulate it (more, its production is subsidized by our government) as an addictive substance. Yes, essential sugar is addictive we need it not only to thrive but to be healthy and to live
Essential Sugar — Sugar is an Important Nutrient
Sugar is an important part of our diets and we do crave it and seek it out. Do we grasp for the sour or watery fruits? Do we rave about the wines produced in bad years? Do we instinctively look for the most sour foods or the sweet foods? Yes, our bodies, ourselves are programmed to seek and eat foodstuffs with sugar and the more of it the better.
Simply put, without sugar our fires grow weak and die.
Essential Sugar — Added Sugars
Most of the complaints are about sugar added to foods. The person mashing up berries adds in a few teaspoons of table sugar (sucrose), the beverage company adding corn syrup to the mix, the person topping their already sweet ice cream with maple syrup, or the person pouring some honey into their tea.
Most of the evil attributed to sugar is in the adding sugar and not in sugar itself. Adding sugar is not evil either, but you need to be aware of added sugars and take care not to consume too much extra sugar. Often times sugar is characterized as empty calories, but our body’s first priority is to keep the fire burning and extra calories are valued by our bodies. The problem is at this time in many nations the availability of food is plentiful and even over time, we do not have to store up calories over the summer to get us through the food drought of winter.
Essential Sugar — Some Myths
- Sugar Causes Diabetes
- Sugar Causes Hyperactivity in Children
- High Fructose Corn Syrup is EVIL
No, it does not. Diabetes is the difficulty the body has in regulating the blood sugar and requires those with diabetes to be much more mindful of their sugar intake. Adult onset diabetes (Type 2) is brought on by lack of physical activity and being overweight and is when our bodies need more and more insulin to regulate the blood sugar. The other form of diabetes is juvenile diabetes (Type 1) people are born with and is where the body’s immune system destroys the pancreatic cells that produce insulin.
No it does not. The circumstance in which we liberate the children from their usual dietary constraints is what brings on their high level of activities. Have a party with many children and they will play boisterously, it is what children do.
No it is not, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a sugar rich syrup like many others. The difference is HFCS is easier to make and more plentiful than traditional cane sugar (sucrose).
Essential Sugar — Be Vigilant
Regulating your sugar intake means being vigilant and preparing your own food most of the time! Processed foods and restaurant (and the majority of restaurants serve reheated processed foods) foods contain added sugars, even those foods we think would not have sugars. It means skipping sweets at the office and at home most of the time. Keep sweet treats as treats to be eaten occasionally. Eat the pie and cookies during the holiday season with zeal and enjoy, but on January 2, do not even have sweet treats around!
Essential Sugar — How Do You Control Your Added Sugar Intake?
How do you control your added sugar intake? do you worry about it at all?