I want to talk to today about sugar. The United States Department of Agriculture reports that the average American consumes 150-170 lbs. of sugar a year. That's like eating 30-34 5lbs. bags of sugar a year or 1.25-4.5 lbs. of sugar a day. This should be fairly alarming. Because of all the things that can cause inflammation, sugar tops the list. By the 1700's consumption of sugar had reached 4 lbs. a year. By 1800 consumption had risen to approximately 18 lbs. a year. And then by 1900 we were consuming 60 lbs. a year. We've made quite a leap in one century, more than doubling our consumption. As I mentioned, sugar is highly inflammatory. Is it any wonder that we see the level of disease that there is in this country when our sugar consumption is so high. It is one of the culprits behind arthritis pain, causes diabetes, causes behavioral problems, feeds cancer and yeast infections, causes organ malfunction and hormone disruption.
But let's talk about where all this sugar comes from. Besides all the obvious sugar that we consume (you know- candy bars, ice cream, cookies, doughnuts, etc) much of our food is also laced with HFCS. What is High Fructose Corn Syrup you might ask? It's a highly processed, refined sugar and it can do something no other food can do. It has the ability to turn off Leptin. Leptin is the hormone that tells us when we're full or when we're suppose to stop eating. Hence, if we keep on eating because our Leptin has stopped working, then we can become obese. Another source of sugar is carbohydrates. Did you know that? Did you know that all carbohydrates turn into sugar when processed by the body? So if you eat white bread, white rice, white pasta, etc., as soon as these hit your digestive system you're hit with an instant huge blast of sugar. If you eat whole grains the release of sugar is over a longer, sustained period of time, but it is still sugar.
Did you know that sugar is more addictive that cocaine and heroine? Looking at the levels that it's consumption has risen to, it makes sense. Sugar is 7-8 times more addictive than these deadly street drugs. The first time I saw that fact, I was astounded. It had to sink in. That's something worth thinking about.
~Studies have shown that 75-100 grams of simple sugar(about 20 teaspoons, the amount found in 2 1/2 average 12 oz. cans of soda) can suppress the body's immune system considerably
~Sugar has been known to create a 40-60% decrease in the ability of white blood cells to kill bacteria and germs within the body
~The immune suppressing affect of sugar starts less than 30 minutes after ingestion and can last up to 5 hours after consumption
~By consuming 150-170 lbs. each year, a person may have up to 80,000 hours of immune suppression
So, you may be asking yourself, what can I do to get a handle on this? I will be discussing options in my next blog article. Until then...
Here's to your health,
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Deborah Brannaka, Holistic Sanctuary Certified Health Coaching, helps clients feel their best by tailoring individualed wellness programs to mee their needs.
** The content on the Indy Holistic Hub website is for information purposes and should not be construed as diagnosis, treatment, or medical advice of any kind. Always consult your health professional before implementing or changing health regimens.