We live in a world where sugar forms, almost, the basis of every food ingredient. Read any nutrition label and you’ll be hard pressed not to find processed sugar as one of the key ingredients. In the face of such continued assault, what can you do? Educate yourself of course! Here are 5 very damning reasons why high sugar intake is no good for you.
1). Heart Disease
High-sugar diets have been associated with an increased risk of many diseases, including heart disease, the number one cause of death worldwide. A study in over 30,000 people found that those who consumed 17–21% of calories from added sugar had a 38% greater risk of dying from heart disease, compared to those consuming only 8% of calories from added sugar.2). Type 2 Diabetes
The worldwide prevalence of diabetes has more than doubled over the past 30 years. Obesity, which is often caused by consuming too much sugar, is considered the strongest risk factor for diabetes.
What’s more, prolonged high sugar consumption drives resistance to insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that regulates blood sugar levels.
Insulin resistance causes blood sugar levels to rise and strongly increases your risk of diabetes.
A diet high in added sugar and processed foods may increase your chances of developing depression. Researchers believe that blood sugar swings, neurotransmitter dysregulation and inflammation may all be reasons for sugar’s detrimental impact on mental health.
A study following 8,000 people for 22 years showed that men who consumed 67 grams or more of sugar per day were 23% more likely to develop depression than men who ate less than 40 grams per day.
4). Fatty Liver
A high intake of fructose has been consistently linked to an increased risk of fatty liver. Unlike glucose and other types of sugar, which are taken up by many cells throughout the body, fructose is almost exclusively broken down by the liver.
In the liver, fructose is converted into energy or stored as glycogen. However, the liver can only store so much glycogen before excess amounts are turned into fat.
5). Cancer Risk
Eating excessive amounts of sugar may increase your risk of developing certain cancers. First, a diet rich in sugary foods and beverages can lead to obesity, which significantly raises your risk of cancer. Furthermore, diets high in sugar increase inflammation
in your body and may cause insulin resistance, both of which increase cancer risk. A study in over 430,000 people found that added sugar consumption was positively associated with an increased risk of esophageal cancer, pleura cancer and cancer of the small intestine.
JILLIAN KUBALA, MS, RD
Jillian Kubala is a registered dietitian based in Westhampton, NY. Jillian holds a master’s degree in nutrition from Stony Brook University School of Medicine as well as an undergraduate degree in nutrition science.
adapted from healthline.com