Sugar has become a part of our daily culture. We eat it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. We eat it socially, plan parties around it, and even use it to heal our broken hearts. But the truth about sugar is it’s damaging to your health and can sabotage your diet efforts. We’re breaking down everything you need to know about sugar and offering some easy tips to quit sugar.
Do Our Bodies Need Sugar?
We often only think of sugar as being bad, it’s actually an essential source of energy. The truth about sugar is that it has both positive and negative effects on the body. Naturally occurring sugars are an unavoidable and necessary part of a healthy diet. Fruits, vegetables, dairy, and grains all have a certain degree of naturally occurring sugar. Attempting to completely remove sugar from your diet would result in placing unhealthy limits on the types of food you consume.
Sugar is a source of energy for your cells. Your body breaks down various forms of sugar into glucose, and uses this to supply your body with energy. Livestrong expounds upon this process, stating, “Your liver helps to regulate the amount of glucose in your blood and provides a continuous supply to meet your energy needs. When your cells require energy, they absorb glucose from your bloodstream and break it into two molecules of pyruvate, which then transfer into the mitochondria – the “furnaces” in your cells.”
The flip side comes when you consume more sugar than your body needs for energy production. At that point, the remaining glucose gets stored in your liver and muscles for future use. Once those stores have been topped off, any remaining glucose is stored as fat. Sugar has also been found to boost brain health, but too much sugar can have the opposite effect and will lead to a blood sugar spike and result in a brain fog.
The key for optimal health is in consuming the right amount and type of sugar. Natural sugar does the most good. Too much of any form of sugar can cause problems.
How Bad Is Sugar For You?
How bad is sugar? Let us count the ways. There is a lot of research out there about the harmful effects of sugar. Here are just a few of the reasons you should avoid it in excess:
- Sugary foods don’t satisfy, but they are calorie dense, so it’s easy to consume a lot of extra calories without even realizing it. While one small treat may have a lot of calories, it won’t fill you up.
- It often displaces nutritious food in our diet. High sugar foods are often low in other nutrients, that’s why they call them empty calories.
- Added sugar increases triglycerides, or fat levels in the blood, which can impact your cardiovascular health.
- It causes inflammation in our bodies.
- Soda doesn’t trigger the same hormones that tell us we’ve eaten something.
- Sugar consumption can drag your immune system down.
Why Do They Put Sugar In Everything?
There’s no conspiracy theory here. Added sugar is in so many things because it tastes good and people like it. It does have the added benefit of acting as a preservative, which may be why it has a tendency to turn up in unsuspecting packaged goods.
What Are Free Sugars?
No, a “free sugar” is not another term for the sucker you get from your favorite bank teller, but there is a simple explanation. Any added sugar, or sugar that isn’t naturally occurring, is considered a free sugar. For example, fruits and vegetables, rice, and other similar foods do not have free sugars. Cookies, candy bars, sodas, and treats are filled with free sugars.
Good Sugar vs Bad Sugar
Sugar molecules are nothing more than a type of carbohydrate, but some sugars are better than others. Minimally processed sugars, like honey or maple syrup, are better for you, but only marginally so. The main difference between natural sugar (i.e. good sugar) and added sugar (i.e. bad sugar) is that natural sugar typically comes packaged in a food that also contains vitamins and other nutrients, while foods with lots of added sugar are often devoid of other nutritional qualities.
If you’re looking to cut down on added sugar, you need to be careful when reading nutrition labels. Manufacturers commonly refer to sugar by many different names including sucrose, glucose, fructose, maltose, galactose, and lactose. In fact, there are about 56 different names for sugar. Just because the word “sugar” doesn’t appear on a food label, it doesn’t mean it’s not in there somewhere.
11 Quitting Sugar Tips
Drink Water: If you’re staring down a sugar craving, try reaching for a glass of water instead. Water helps you feel full faster and can put off the need to reach for a sweet treat.
Get Rid of It: The easiest way to quit sugar is to not keep it on hand. You’ll think twice if you have to travel somewhere to get your fix. So whatever your weakness is, get it out of your house.
Indulge (Just a Little): Quitting sugar cold turkey can be a challenge mentally and physically. Sometimes you need to give in a little. This isn’t a license to go crazy, but having a small treat every now and then won’t ruin your life.
Consider taking a supplement to curb your cravings. Xyngular Trimstix can help you manage your sugar intake and help you maintain already healthy blood sugar levels. It helps maintain stable, consistent energy levels throughout the day. It can also help to control cravings, making it less likely that you will eat too much sugar and have it get converted to fat. The proprietary blend of naturally-sourced ingredients accomplishes all of this while only containing 10 calories per serving. It is the perfect ally in your weight loss or maintenance efforts.*
Stick With It:
Withdrawal is real. If sugar is part of your normal diet, it will take a few weeks to get out of the habit. Don’t give up when the craving doesn’t go away after a day or two. The battle against sugar will get easier the longer you resist.
Protein keeps hunger at bay, and hunger is the enemy when it comes to snacking. Eating eggs for breakfast, or incorporating a chicken breast into your lunch or dinner, can help you feel more full longer.
Fiber helps maintain already healthy blood sugar levels by slowing the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream. It can also maintain already healthy blood sugar levels, optimize inflammation response, and combat other negative effects of sugar.
There’s something about chewing gum that tricks our brains into thinking we’re eating. The little boost of flavor and the working of our jaw can really hit the spot when a craving strikes.
Reach for Healthy Option:
If you’re giving in to a craving, try to choose wisely. If possible, grab a piece of fruit instead of a candy bar to satisfy your sweet tooth. But if fruit won’t do the trick, opt for dark chocolate, frozen yogurt, or a similar healthy option to get your fix.
If we go too long between meals, we get desperate. When we get desperate, we’re more likely to abandon our diet goals. Eating regular meals with healthy snacks in between will help keep you from making rash snacking decisions.
Eat a Healthy Breakfast:
They don’t call breakfast the most important meal of the day for nothing. Breakfast helps jumpstart your metabolism, but it’s also an easy way to consume hidden sugars. Bagels, waffles, cereals, flavored yogurts, pancakes, and even fruit all have a lot of sugar. Whole wheat toast, eggs, avocado, oatmeal, and a little fruit can all be part of a healthy balanced breakfast.
Now that you know the truth about sugar, if you’re looking for an easy way to fight sugar cravings, try Trimstix. Trimstix can help you maintain already healthy blood sugar levels, while simultaneously reducing cravings. Add Trimstix to your diet and enjoy the benefit of this powerful supplement in your weight loss or maintenance efforts.*
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.