Are you one of those who cannot miss a day without a dessert or a sweet at the end of every meal? After all, who doesn’t love eating mithai or a dessert? Although there is no harm in enjoying these treats once in a while, it’s no good if it becomes a habit. Chances are you already know that eating too much sugar isn’t good for you. Yet you’re probably still overdoing it.
Sugar is delicious but because life is unfair sometimes, high sugar intake is bad for your health. According to a study published in the journal Nature Communications, consuming a diet high in sugar might prevent the proper functioning of people’s immune systems. And a weak immune system is followed by an unhealthy body which can cause various health issues.
Here’s how high sugar intake affect your health
If you have a sweet tooth, it is time you control your cravings. Otherwise, it can put you at increased risk of several health diseases.
According to Dr. Pritam Moon, a consultant physician, Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai, “Too much sugar can lead to fat accumulation that can make you pile up those excess kilos, and fatty liver disease, type 2 diabetes. This can further double the chances of heart problems. Moreover, remember that obesity also raises your risk of cancer.”
He adds, “Not only this, but too much sugar can also lead to high blood pressure and increase inflammation in the body. Poor diet choices can invite skin problems like wrinkles and speed up your aging process. The collagen and elastin of the skin tend to get damaged, and it tends to sag and becomes loose. Too much sugar can lead to low energy. Eating too much sugar can spoil your teeth as you may get cavities, gum problems and it can even decline your cognitive health. You will be unable to focus and there will be memory loss too.”
So, how would you know that you are eating too much sugar? Here are the signs that might mean you’re eating too much sugar according to Dr Moon.
1. High blood pressure
Your blood pressure is considered normal if it is 120/80 or lower. Not just salt, sugar can spike your blood pressure as well. According to a research review published in the BMJ journal Open Heart, limiting sugar intake is more important than reducing sodium injection when it comes to healthy blood pressure.
2. Weight gain
Excess sugar is excess calories and since it has no protein or fiber it doesn’t feel you up also. Also, high levels of sugar increase the production of insulin that stores excess fat in your belly rather than in some other places.
3. Low energy level
An increased level of sugar in your diet can drop your energy level because most sugar-rich foods are nutrition deficient.
If you are battling acne, wrinkles, and other skin problems it may be worthwhile to consider how much added sugar you are eating. High sugar intake triggers the secretion of androgen which results in acne.
5. More cravings for sweet
This happens because sugary foods are addictive so the more sugar you eat the more you will crave it.
High sugar intake affects blood sugar levels. Fluctuations in blood sugar levels can result in rapid mood changes including low mood and irritability and mental status.
7. Joint pain
Some studies have linked regularly having high sugar intake to arthritis in women possibly due to inflammation. So the joint pain is also one of the side effects of consuming high sugar.
8. Sleep issues
Eating sugar food, especially at night, could lead to a rush of energy at a time when we should focus on slowing down and preparing the body to rest. According to a study published in August 2019 in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, poor sleep quality is significantly related to higher consumptions of added sugars.
Once you notice these symptoms, it is time to alter your diet. Stick to healthy eating habits, and improve your quality of life.
Tips to cut down on sugar from the daily diet
- Practice mindful eating. Don’t fall prey to your cravings.
- Choose your food items wisely. Read about the sugar content before buying any product.
- Switch to healthy alternatives of sugar like honey, avoid foods with added sugars, cut down on sweets, colas, and other sweetened beverages.
- Say NO to cake, pastries, sweets, and candies. Opt for fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Go for shopping on a full stomach and you will not end up eating sugary food, in case you eat sugary foods then practice portion control, try to be alert while using condiments such as ketchup and barbecue sauce, which are usually jam-packed with sugar, and opt for lower sugar options such as mustard or hot sauce concludes Dr moon.
So ladies, listen to the doctor’s advice and stay healthy.