It is a well known fact that there is plenty of wrong with the modern diet.. We all know… but added sugar is a real culprit..Numerous studies have shown that sugar is the driving agent for most of the killer diseases, including heart failure, kidney disease even the big monster – cancer..
Are we Sugar addicted?
Answers to this question seem ‘ yes’. what do you say? … Why we are habitual of sugar?… why can’t we drink milk without sugar ( milk contains natural sugar – lactose), why juice packed in tetra pack is loaded with added sugar( I understand it is used as preservatives.. but what other benefit it adds to the juice) . When we all know fruits contains natural sugar, then why we add sugar while extracting juice from pulp at home? Why even the aroma of sweets increase our appetite? And mouth watering chocolates are favorites of everyone, from kids to old.. ‘No Umar for sharing – raho Umarless’…
Life is so beautiful.. sweetness everywhere.. isn’t it?
How added sugar differs from naturally occurring sugar?
Naturally occurring sugar is found in whole, unprocessed food, such as fruits, vegetables (such as potato, beetroot),dates,sugarcane and milk. Fructose ( found in fruits) & lactose ( found in milk) are most common naturally occurring sugar.Added sugar is the sugar which is added to fruits while these are being prepared.
Why sugar is not so good for health?
Studies have shown that we are taking a massive amount of sugar and that too without realizing it. This may cause a dip in your health graph. Below are few reasons why high level of sugar is not recommended.
Quick tip : Sugar is a simple carbohydrate that is used by body for fuel. It contains no other nutritional value.
1) Poor Nutritional intake
If you intake more sugar in your food, you may skip other nutritional food. Sugar hardly provides any nutritional value. So this means less minerals, protein and other nutrients in take through right diet.
2) Weight gain
Sugar is carbohydrates that add calories to your weight. Sugar is not only a single cause for weight gain, there may be some other factors as well. But definitely there are more chances for weight gain with sweetened food as compared to unsweetened food.
3) Increase disease risk
Eating an excessive amount of added sugar can increase triglyceride levels, which may increase your risk of heart disease.
If Added sugar is not so sweet for your health then why it gets added to so many food items?
Wonderful question.. Here follows the answer.
1) Sweetness is appealing, it helps boost appetite.
I have seen multiple times when many mothers add some extra sugar to make their kid finish milk. Not sure what nutritional value that milk provides, but that extra sugar will definitely impact the immune system of child.
Quick tip: 1 spoon of sugar slows down immune system upto 4 hours.
2) Enhances the looks and color of food
Good looking food increases appetite.. True? Sugar plays an important role in making food more appealing.
3) Used as preservatives
In almost all packed food and refreshers, sugar is added as preservative. At home too, I have seen my mother adding sugar in the pickle to give it long lasting shelf life.
4) Helps fermentation in bread and used as bulking agent in baked food and ice creams.
5) Used as an acidity regulator in some food.
What is recommended value of sugar per day?
The American Heart Association (AHA) has very specific guidelines for intake of added sugar. No more than 100 calories a day for women and no more than 150 calories a day for men.
In term of spoon – 6 table spoon for women and 9 tablespoon for men.
What are the alternatives?
Best way is to replace sugar with Jagger or Honey. Jaggery contains some traces of iron, zinc and fibre. It provides multiple health benefits in terms of digestion and immunity booster to fight common cold and cough. Honey on the other hand is a natural anti oxident and anti allergic.
Read More about the benefits of Jaggery and Honey in the below Posts:
Over to you
Have you ever recorded your intake of added sugar? You can share your experience on how added sugar intake can be monitored and can be cut down….looking forward to hear from you … 🙂