Sugar vs Fat - Which is the real dieters enemy?
Cocaine or sugar in your tea madam?
If you were asked to think of an addict, you would probably conjure up a smoker or an alcoholic or maybe even a person dependent on drugs and would probably feel a mixture of sympathy and disgust towards them.
If a person claims to be a chocoholic and is addicted to sugary snacks, it is often viewed affectionately, as something that isn’t that harmful and is in fact an acceptable treat.
However, new evidence and medical research suggests that a diet high in sugar can be one of the most dangerous things you can do to your body.
Does the UK have a sugar addiction?
It is estimated that the average British person consumes over 100 teaspoons of sugar in their diet each week, often without even realising it.
When coupled with the fact that recent figures show that 26 per cent of the British public are overweight or obese, many experts are now agreeing the addition of sugar in every day foods – especially low fat versions of foods, is fully to blame.
Whether it is from a penchant for chocolate or by consuming sugar laden foods such as ready-made meals and sugary cereals, sugar weighs heavily in our diets and can cause long term problems for your health and wellbeing.
It is common for dieters to study nutritional labels on food products for calorie content and to check how much salt it contains in the name of benefiting their health. However, it seems that refined sugar, which is systematically included in everyday foods, is often overlooked.
Is sugar really that harmful?
In a recent study investigating the causes of type 2 (non-insulin dependent) diabetes participants were required to eat an additional 150 calories a day in their diet.
Those who consumed extra calories from a healthier diet showed that their rate of diabetes increased by 0.1 per cent, however, those whose additional 150 calories included sugary foods such as a fizzy drink, their rate increased by 1.1 per cent.
It proved that the increased calories were not posing a risk but the increased sugar, which is thought to be 11 times more potent, is the potential cause of diabetes.
Gywneth Paltrow – One of many now saying NO to sugar
There are many Nutritionists that are encouraging consumers to rid sugar from their diet completely.
Celebrity serial dieter Gwyneth Paltrow in her new book “It’s All Good” boasts of how she refuses to eat or feed her family any refined foods with a no sugar rule in their diet.
A leading Professor and the bestselling Author of “Fat Chance: The Bitter Truth About Sugar” Robert Lustig, is encouraging a global ‘no sugar’ movement, warning of the risks of a future riddled with obesity and disease if our love of sugar does not abate.
What the public do not seem to know and what Lustig is keen to promote, is that the naturally occurring sugar fructose is almost impossible for the body to use.
Excess fructose cannot be transferred into energy and is instead converted into liver fat, encouraging your body to produce more insulin which can lead to illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease.
Fructose is a vital component of fruit as it is designed to entice animals and humans to the fructose source contained within the fruit. However, the danger comes when additional sugar such as artificial fructose is added as an ingredient and we are left consuming far too much in order for our bodies to cope.
Breaking the habit
Abstaining from sugar can be a hard habit to break, with many dieters who have given up sugar describing a ‘cold turkey’ type reaction complete with an insatiable craving for something sweet once it is excluded from their diets.
However, once they became used to living without sugar they felt an increased feeling of energy, an advanced palate with the ability to taste natural sweetness in foods, but most importantly they were able to lose weight more easily.
The total exclusion of sugar from your diet may seem a bit drastic and difficult to maintain, but if you have been struggling to lose weight for years, then limiting your intake of sugar, rather than fat, could be the key to unlocking that slimmer frame.