Sugar is found in just about everything that we eat. Excessive sugar consumption has become an epidemic in our country, and it is one of the reasons why we are in a health crisis. Have you ever looked at the amount of added sugars that are in the foods you eat?
Now, eliminating ALL sugar from your diet is simply impossible. Natural sugars found in fruits and vegetables are a great source of energy that our bodies need to function. Instead, let’s focus on getting rid of the sugars that our bodies aren’t meant to consume. These are found in processed foods, canned foods, and soft drinks.
So, what happens when you cut out the bad sugars?…
1. Decrease Inflammation
When you think of inflammation you may immediately think of acute pain, like when you sprain your ankle, and it swells. But what about the ache in your knee you feel at the end of the day? Or the arthritis you have been dealing with in your hands for the last several years? These too are caused by inflammation.
Inflammation happens in response to your body trying to heal itself. Like that sprained ankle, your body is in defense mode. By eating excessive amounts of sugar every day, your body is constantly working in overdrive, and it is starting to show up in the forms of those aches and pains. It is also wearing down other parts of your body and may be the cause of other conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and even depression.
Most of us suffer from chronic inflammation and don’t even realize it. We attribute these aches to “getting older”. We believe our new diabetes diagnosis is genetically inherited and unavoidable. We blame our depression on the season, the weight gain, or the brain fog.
All of these things are avoidable AND reversible. This is why clean eating is detrimental and fueling our bodies with sustainable food is so important. Along with routine exercise, you can start eliminating your inflammation today. Learn more about How to Decrease Inflammation on our blog.
2. Sleep Better
Don’t believe what you hear when people tell you insomnia is “part of getting old.” Our bodies need sleep to function. When we aren’t getting adequate rest, it takes a huge toll on our body and our mind. Now, eliminating sugar for 1 day won’t make your sleep struggles go away. It can take a few weeks to really start to improve.
Foods that are high in artificial sweeteners and refined sugars directly affect the quality of sleep we get. The slow wave sleep (SWS) is restorative sleep. It is home to our memories and the information that we learn throughout our days is reduced. Rapid eye movement sleep (REM) is our dream phase of sleep. Both of these phases of sleep are reduced because of the copious amount of sugars we are consuming.
Even if you don’t think you have trouble sleeping, you may not be waking up feeling refreshed and “rested”. No wonder you don’t have energy to get your to-do’s list done! To learn more about gaining restful sleep, check out Why Can’t I Sleep at Night?
3. Lose Weight
Sugar can be just as addictive as alcohol. The more we eat, the more we crave it. So, when you start eliminating the excessive amount of sugar and artificial sweeteners you consume, you will in turn, crave less of it.
Added sugars are empty calories, meaning they do not provide any nutritional benefit from eating them. When you eat them, your body does not break them down the same and therefore, you don’t feel full and are more likely to overeat. When you fill your belly with healthy, real, whole foods, instead of artificial, processed foods, your body has a chance to let you know when it is full. By eliminating the sugary sodas and soft drinks and replace them with water, you will consume fewer empty calories. In turn, you will feel full sooner with each meal and a side effect of that will be weight loss. Sounds easy, right?
4. Clear Brain Fog
We already covered the fact that sugar causes inflammation in our joints, but it also causes inflammation in our brains. Recent studies have confirmed that eating a diet high in sugar directly impacts our brain’s ability to retain short and long-term memory. It has been linked to the development of Alzheimer’s disease and early onset dementia.
Being forgetful is not a “normal” aging process. It is something to take seriously and act on immediately. You can clear your brain fog by simply eating a healthy diet and drinking more water. If you suffer from Brain Fog, we would love to help you find clarity.
5. Improve Your Skin
Maybe you don’t have any of the other issues mentioned in this article but are suffering from adult acne or premature wrinkles. Consuming high amounts of sugar lead to excessive insulin spikes, which can also cause inflammation of the skin. When that happens, the collagen and elasticity become damaged, leading to premature wrinkling, acne and even rosacea.
Reducing or eliminating the amount of refined sugar you consume, along with increasing your daily water intake will reverse these unwanted side effects. Make your skin look clearer, plumper, and glowy again. If that isn’t enough to make you want to ditch the sodas and processed snacks, nothing will be!
Obesity, arthritis, insomnia, and memory loss are NOT a normal part of aging. These are all a sign of excessive sugar consumption. By eliminating the added sugars and artificial sweeteners in your diet, you can start reversing these unwanted symptoms.
This lifestyle change will not be easy. You will have setbacks along the way, you are human after all. The most important thing to remember is to KEEP GOING! And if you need assistance along the way, contact our team at Twin Oaks Health and see if we can help you be more successful in your journey.
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