Public Enemy No.1 when it comes to healthy eating right now is sugar. Hidden in practically every kind of processed and packaged food, it sneaks into places you’d least expect.
Tinned tomatoes, soya sauce, coconut milk…there are many brands that contain sugar. It’s important to get to know your labels.
Too much sugar does far more damage than just rot our teeth or make us fat; it affects our mood, motivation, and memory.
In its natural form - fruit for example - sugar is fairly harmless. It’s the refined, added sugar lurking in your salad dressing or in your “low fat” cereal that you need to worry about.
Cutting out sugar can have many benefits to your health and wellbeing.
Here are just a few reasons to ditch the sweet stuff:
- You’ll lower your blood pressure. Too much sugar can lead to heightened risk of stroke and cardiovascular disease. Excessive sugar causes obesity so it stands to reason that your heart health will benefit if you reduce your consumption.
- Too much sugar can impair cognitive function, which means it eats away at your brain power. That’s more to worry about that just a few fillings.
- Eating a diet high in sugar reduces the body’s ability to produce a chemical called brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which helps the brain form new memories and remember things from the past. By cutting down your sugar intake you are helping prevent diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s.
- Too much sugar can really hit your skin hard. It can make it look dull and lifeless, due to a process called glycation which forms advanced glycation end products -these damage collagen and elastin which keep the skin looking young and supple.
So there you have it, a few more reasons to cut down on the hidden enemy in our food. Try and eat as many whole foods as you can, and keep them in as natural a state as possible to have the best chance of dodging the secret sugars.