Recently we saw the amazing “That Sugar Film” documentary. For those who haven’t seen it, Damon Gameau gave up sugar 3 years ago. For the purpose of the experiment, he decided to undergo an experiment eating only foods that are deemed “healthy” to everyday people. This revealed that the average person consumes approximately 40 teaspoons of sugar on a daily basis. Throughout the 60-day experiment, you are able to see his health rapidly decline.
There are three important sugars to take note of: galactose, glucose & fructose. Any other sugars consumed are generally a combination of the three. For example, “Lactose” which is found in milk is a combination of glucose & galactose.
The primary focus of Damon’s experiment was fructose. Thousands of years ago, fructose was rare in nature, considered “fine spice” towards the end of the medieval era. Today, fructose is excessively manufactured, found in a majority of things we eat and extremely sweet in flavour (approximately 60% sweeter than glucose or galactose). Highly addictive, fructose is commonly combined with glucose, therefore this is why we are able to absorb virtually unlimited quantities thus increasing rates of major health issues associated with sugar. In comparison, if you consumed too much lactose (glucose & galactose), you would soon enough get an upset stomach.
It was astounding to find out that during Damon’s experiment, so many of the foods we eat on a daily basis (e.g. muesli bars, yoghurts, Up & Go drinks etc) are advertised to be healthy yet they are riddled with huge amounts of hidden sugars. Don’t be fooled by the packaging & educate yourself on the various names sugar might fall under. For example, corn syrup, diatase, ethyl maltol, cane sugar, beet sugar, honey, malt syrup, maltodextrin, maltose, sorbitol and so on are all converted in your body as the same thing – sugar!! Did you know that the criteria for the Heart Foundation Tick of Approval doesn’t include sugar. No wonder people are mislead. Moral of the story – eat everything in moderation & be aware of where to find sugar & how it can negatively impact your health.
10 Facts About Sugar:
- Did you know that the absorption of vitamin A (an essential vitamin that can help with acne, arthritis, asthma, colds, dry skin, obesity, heavy menstrual bleeding and so on) is inhibited by excess consumption of sugar
- Sugar suppresses the immune system
- Sugar can rapidly increase energy levels but only last for a short period of time (pathway to addiction)
- Sugar can cause anxiety levels to increase, leading to depression
- Sugar contributes to food allergies
- Sugar is highly addictive
- Sugar can impair eyesight
- Sugar can cause arthritis
- Sugar can cause tooth decay
- Sugar can increase liver fat