Although most of us assume that we consume very little sugar, that’s not the case. We often cross our daily sugary intake limit with cold drinks, candy, baked goods, sweetened dairy products, etc. So, we should always keep in mind certain sugar side effects. Let’s have a look!
Daily Sugar Intake
While planning a diet, one should always remember how much sugar should be consumed in a day. In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) suggested that only 5% of daily calories come from added sugar.
Therefore, if we consider a diet of 2,000 calories per day, your sugar consumption should not cross more than 6 teaspoons.
9 Disadvantages of Sugar
If you have a sugar tooth and include too much sugar in your diet plan, it’s time to rethink. Let’s look at what happens when you eat too much sugar.
1. Causes Obesity
One of the main reasons behind worldwide obesity is sugar-sweetened drinks containing a high amount of fructose. Fructose is a simple carbohydrate that increases hunger and desire for food.
Excessive sugar intake can also generate resistance to leptin that regulates hunger. In addition to that, sugary beverages add excessive calories to your regular diet, finally resulting in unnecessary weight gain.
2. Increases Risk of Heart Diseases
One of the major side effects of consuming sugar is the increased risk of heart disease. In addition, diets rich in sugar can cause obesity, inflammation and high triglyceride, and high blood pressure. All these health conditions are directly associated with life-threatening heart diseases.
Similarly, too much sugar can result in atherosclerosis, a disease characterized by fatty, artery-clogging, and causing heart diseases.
3. Causes Type-2 Diabetics
The pancreas fails to produce enough insulin to stabilize increased blood sugar levels with excessive sugar. At the same time, the cells can also become resistant to the produced insulin. As a result, the chances of getting people with type-2 diabetes are higher for people who incorporate too much sugar in their diet.
Higher blood sugar levels not only cause type-2 diabetics but also result in heart diseases, kidney damage, liver-related issues.
4. Damages Liver
Once we consume more sugar than our daily limit, the abundance of added sugar gets broken down in the liver. As a result, it transforms into fat and results in non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFLD). The high fructose intake is mainly responsible here as it gets exclusively broken down by the liver.
Furthermore, the liver converts the excess sugar into triglycerides, resulting in decreased good cholesterol levels.
5. Tooth and Bone Decay
One of the main disadvantages of sugar is decaying teeth caused by plaque bacteria. It is naturally present in your mouth but only reacts to the sugars by producing acids. These acids gradually destroy the protective enamel on your teeth, resulting in cavities and decay.
Another sugar side effects is worsening joint pain and bone decay due to the inflammation caused by sugar in the body joint pains increase. Eventually, it can lead to rheumatoid arthritis.
6. Accelerates Skin Aging
Too much sugar can weaken collagen and elastin components of our skin, making the skin age faster. In addition, it makes your skin drier and more prone to wrinkles and sagging.
7. Develops Acne
Sugary foods are responsible for causing sudden spikes in blood sugar and insulin levels. In addition, it often leads to increased androgen secretion, oil production, and inflammation. These issues play a vital role in developing acne.
So, try to opt for a low-glycemic diet to reduce getting acne.
8. Promotes Addictive Nature
Sugary foods encourage the secretion of a feel-good chemical named dopamine that controls your cravings. With more dopamine in your system, the brain requires more and more sugar to receive that same feeling of pleasure. Unfortunately, this feeling often leads to addiction-related problems.
So, dopamine can encourage you to take more sugary foods, causing added health complications.
9. Results in Depression & Energy Loss
A sudden spike in blood sugar and insulin levels with sugary foods can result in increased energy levels. However, this high energy level is not long-lasting or stable.
This brief energy boost is generally followed by a decline in blood sugar levels, therefore causing a drop in energetic mood.
How to Cut Down Sugar Intake
There are many negative health effects caused by excessive sugar intake. Of course, you can always include a small amount of sugar or sugary foods in your diet but always remember the limitation. Here are a few tips for you if you wonder how to reduce sugar intake.
1. Use Natural Sweeteners
2. Double-Check the Groceries
Always check your shop-bought bread for its sugar content. Look for ‘zero-added sugar’ while buying marinades, nut butter, and sauces. Don’t forget to choose granolas and granola bars that contain no more than 4 grams of sugar per serving.
3. Time to Replace a Few
Meanwhile, replace your sweet salad dressings with olive oil and vinegar. At the same time, keep homemade trail mix or dark chocolate as your go-to sweet snacks.
You can also opt for rolled oats instead of cereals. They may not look like it, but they have high sugar content.
4. Ditch the Harmful
There are no replacements for sweetened alcoholic beverages. So, it’s better to avoid it for your good.
In addition to these few measurements, op for fresh, whole ingredients rather than preserved products. Most importantly, cook your meal to avoid consuming extra sugar unknowingly.