Dietitians and nutritionists fight every day for their clients to reduce the consumption of sugar in their diet. For this, these professionals are in charge of showing them why sugar is bad for their health, making visible the actual consumption they carry daily through the ingestion of ultra-processed products such as industrial pastries, soft drinks, sauces, jams or sweets.
Traditionally, the question of whether to choose sugar or sweetener to sweeten food has been established, believing that the chemical sweetener, such as saccharin, had fewer calories. However, these types of unnatural products are not beneficial to health and increase the sensation of sweetness, which does not contribute to reducing sugar consumption.
Nutrition and dietetics professionals propose natural alternatives to sugar, which are better for the body and allow the palate to get used to less sweet flavours, thus reducing sugar consumption.
Some of the most notable sugar alternatives are:
Honey. It is a natural product loaded with nutrients, in addition to having anti-inflammatory and antiseptic qualities. However, this is not an option for weight loss diets due to its high-calorie content.
Dates This fruit can be considered a superfood with potassium, magnesium, vitamins and a high level of antioxidants. However, they are very caloric and contain a lot of sugar, but natural origin.
Coconut sugar This variety of sugar is made with the nectar of coconut blossom. It contains vitamins, magnesium, iron and zinc, and its glycemic index is lower than that of sugar. However, people with diabetes should consume it in moderation.
Stevia. This product has no calories and does not affect blood sugar levels, making it a good alternative for people with diabetes. However, it does not contain essential nutrients and leaves a bitter touch after consumption.
Agave syrup. This plant-based product is similar to honey but with a lighter consistency. Contains vitamins, minerals and metabolites. This alternative to sugar does have calories, and due to its high level of fructose, it can be harmful if consumed for a long time.
To conclude, we can establish that one of the most effective strategies to combat this sugar epidemic that society suffers from is physical exercise, a habit of active life that will effectively block the negative responses generated in our bodies by excess sugars. For this reason, opting for coffee without sugar is an excellent step to eliminate this sweet enemy. So answering the question in the title: yes, sugar is terrible.
Sugar is seen in the modern world as a simple addition to food by many people, without delving into its possible positive and adverse health effects.
The modern food industry has promoted the consumption of sugars in different audiovisual media to the public with products such as; cereals, protein bars, ice cream, etc. Making the consumption of these products look like something standard.
Unaware of the type of sugar they consume daily, people are unaware of the possible damage occurring since this knowledge is generally left to the doctors, or they are only studied in case of being affected.
What is sugar? Sugar is precisely a chemical compound made by combining carbon, hydrogen and oxygen in different proportions, and it is a carbohydrate. The chemical name for white sugar is sucrose, which is mixed fructose and glucose, and these are two monosaccharides that are the most basic forms of sugars.
Although you may not believe it, sugar is found in almost everything we eat and drink, only in greater or lesser amounts; from a simple handful of grapes to a beet, they all contain sugar (fructose in the case of fruits).
Alternatives to sugar
For example, 100g of bananas contain 15.6g of sugar; it is quite a lot compared to the WHO recommendation for a daily dose of sugar, a maximum of 50g per day.
In the food industry, they hide excess sugar in some of the most consumed foods and beverages, as they do in some of the most famous carbonated beverages (sodas).
For example, in the case of Coca-Cola, it contains 38% of its sugar content, about 19 g per 250 ml, which is the standard measure of a glass.
Lack of sleep is one of the consequences of sugar consumption; we recommend draining that energy in any activity of your choice before going to bed, such as playing 777 casino roulette, blackjack, baccarat, etc., in your favourite casino.
In general terms, it could also affect our behaviour to compromise some vital organs. Excess sugar consumption can cause insulin resistance syndrome, among other diseases, as reported in the following article.
Depression is one of the effects that excessive consumption of sugar can cause. In many cases, it is not related by doctors when treating patients with this mental pathology, which affects the production of serotonin, inhibiting it to dangerous levels for mental health.
Memory loss, Alzheimer’s, blindness, addiction, and liver failure are related to consuming excess sugars.
On the other hand, one of the most attractive potential benefits of an adequate sugar intake is fluidity in the brain since it requires a delicate biochemical balance to be at 100% of its capacity. Well, too much sugar makes us hyperactive and unable to do tasks calmly and thoughtfully.
To what extent does our body as adults, or that of our children, need sugar? The body needs glucose, the type of sugar found in the blood and is used throughout the body for energy.
“However, the body can obtain this glucose from complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, fruits and vegetables. You can also make glucose from protein or fat when needed. Eating simple forms of added sugar, such as table sugar or honey, is not necessary for the body to prosper”, the pediatrician and international reference in research on nutrition and obesity, Dr. Michael Goran and the health educator, warn in an interview with Infosalus public, Dr. Emily Ventura.
These experts recall that around 70% of processed foods contain added sugar, and 80% are marketed with sugar. According to the World Health Organization recommendations, avoid all added sugars for children under two years of age, and then limit added sugar to 5% or less of total calories for children 2 to 16 years of age or more.
“For children over the age of 2, you can enjoy a little sugar in moderation. We only suggest trying to limit it to daily staples such as cereals, loaves of bread, beverages, dairy products and sandwiches and reserve it for special treats that can be enjoyed as a family,” they add.
Thus, and on the occasion of the publication of ‘Stop sugar. The dangers of sugar and how they affect the health of your children ‘(Grijalbo), both experts emphasize that it is not necessary to follow a strict diet without sugar for children since it is “too restrictive,” as well as an approach that his judgment “tends to backfire and could lead to disorderly eating.”