Is Sugar Really Bad For You? It Depends
Well | Is Sugar Really Bad for You? It Depends The federal governments decision to update food labels last month marked a sea change for consumers: For the first time, beginning in 2018, nutrition labels will be required to list a breakdown of both the total sugars and the added sugars in packaged foods. But is sugar really that bad for you? And is the sugar added to foods really more harmful than the sugars found naturally in foods? We spoke with some top scientists who study sugar and its effects on metabolic health to help answer some common questions about sugar. Heres what they had to say. The shift came after years of urging by many nutrition experts, who say that excess sugar is a primary cause of obesity and heart disease, the leading killer of Americans. Many in the food industry opposed the emphasis on added sugars, arguing that the focus should be on calories rather than sugar. They say that highlightingadded sugar on labels is unscientific, and that the sugar that occurs naturally in foods like fruits and vegetables is essentially no different than the sugar commonly added to packaged foods. But scientists say it is not that simple. So, is added sugar different from the naturally occurring sugarinfood? It depends. Most sugars are essentially combinations of two molecules, glucose and fructose, in different ratios. The sugar in a fresh apple, for instance, is generally the same as the table sugar that might be added to homemade apple pie. Both are known technically as sucrose, and they are broken down in the intestine into glucose and fructose. Glucose can be metabolized by any cell in the body. But fructose is handled almost exclusively by the liver. Once you get to that point, the liver doesnt know whether itcame from fruit or not, said Kimber Stanhope, a Continue reading >>
- Tom Hanks Blames Bad Diet For His Type 2 Diabetes, But What Really Causes The Disease?
- World's first diabetes app will be able to check glucose levels without drawing a drop of blood and will be able to reveal what a can of coke REALLY does to sugar levels
- Can an online game really improve blood sugar control for people with diabetes?
The Difference In How Fructose And Glucose Affect Your Body
My regular readers know that I consider agave to be a BIG enemy to health and beauty- which is very high in fructose (up to 97% fructose). It truly irks me that sly marketing makes the general public think agave is a “healthy” sweetener, and that it continues to be used in “health” products purported to be better than regular baked or other goods, as well as in many restaurants. It is not. There is a myth that exists that fructose is a “healthy” sugar while glucose is bad stuff. In fact, in recent years, there has been a rise in sweeteners that contain this “healthy” sugar, such as the dreaded agave nectar. I sincerely hope that this information (please help spread it!) makes more people aware of the differences in sugar types, and makes more people know to avoid agave at all costs. S.O.S: Save Our Skin!!! Fructose Fructose is one type of sugar molecule. It occurs naturally in fresh fruits, giving them their sweetness. Because of this, many people consider fructose “natural,” and assume that all fructose products are healthier than other types of sugar. Likewise, fructose has a low glycemic index, meaning it has minimal impact on blood glucose levels. This has made it a popular sweetener with people on low-carbohydrate and low-glycemic diets, which aim to minimize blood glucose levels in order to minimize insulin release. But the glycemic index is not the sole determining factor in whether a sweetener is “healthy” or desirable to use. Because fructose is very sweet, fruit contains relatively small amounts, providing your body with just a little bit of the sugar, which is very easily handled. If people continued to eat fructose only in fruit and occasionally honey as our ancestors did, the body would easily process it without any problems. Unfortu Continue reading >>
10 Reasons Why Sugar Is Bad For You
Added sugar is the single worst ingredient in the modern diet. It can have harmful effects on metabolism and contribute to all sorts of diseases. Here are 10 disturbing reasons why you should avoid added sugar like the plague. You've probably heard this a million times before... but it's worth repeating. Added sugars (like sucrose and high fructose corn syrup) contain a whole bunch of calories with NO essential nutrients. For this reason, they are called "empty" calories. There are no proteins, essential fats, vitamins or minerals in sugar... just pure energy. When people eat up to 10-20% of calories as sugar (or more), this can become a major problem and contribute to nutrient deficiencies. Sugar is also very bad for the teeth, because it provides easily digestible energy for the bad bacteria in the mouth (1). Sugar contains a lot of calories, with no essential nutrients. It also causes tooth decay by feeding the harmful bacteria in the mouth. In order to understand what is so bad about sugar, then you need to understand what it is made of. Before sugar enters the bloodstream from the digestive tract, it is broken down into two simple sugars... glucose and fructose. Glucose is found in every living cell on the planet. If we don't get it from the diet, our bodies produce it. Fructose is different. Our bodies do not produce it in any significant amount and there is no physiological need for it. The thing with fructose is that it can only be metabolized by the liver in any significant amounts. This is not a problem if we eat a little bit (such as from fruit) or we just finished an exercise session. In this case, the fructose will be turned into glycogen and stored in the liver until we need it (3). However, if the liver is full of glycogen (much more common), eating a lot Continue reading >>
Good Sugar Vs. Bad Sugar
Not all sugar is bad. Your body needs a type of sugar known as glucose in order to function properly. That being said, you also can’t overdo it, which is what a lot of people do. There are also some sugars that are better for you, or at least less damaging, than others. Understanding what constitutes good sugar from bad will help you prevent weight gain and disease while keeping your diet manageable and your body that much fitter. Sugar 101 First off, when a doctor or scientist refers to sugar, they aren’t necessarily talking about table sugar. Glucose is an essential part of our diets and a natural part of many foods that contain carbohydrates. Things like pasta, rice and bread have lots of carbs and nearly 100% of those carbohydrates are turned into glucose by our body. When glucose enters your body, insulin travels through your bloodstream to use it properly. This keeps energy flowing to all your body. Maintaining proper Insulin Efficiency keeps your body utilizing energy more than storing it as fat, keeps your cardiovascular system healthy and more. Sucrose: glucose and fructose Table sugar, or sucrose, is made of half glucose. The other half is made of fructose, which you may know from all the press surrounding the use of high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). When you eat too much sugar, it’s not the glucose that is causing trouble in your cardiovascular and digestive systems; it’s the fructose. If there’s a “bad” sugar, this is it. Take note, though. High-fructose corn syrup is bad for you, but it only contains 5% more fructose than normal table sugar. This means if you’re substituting real sugar for HFCS, you’re only decreasing your fructose intake by a very small amount. Table sugar may be slightly technically better, but it’s still bad for you. T Continue reading >>
Sugars: The Difference Between Fructose, Glucose And Sucrose
29/06/2016 7:43 AM AEST | Updated 15/07/2016 12:56 PM AEST Sugars: The Difference Between Fructose, Glucose And Sucrose We're not just confused, we're also misinformed. "Fructose is the worst for you." "No way, sucrose is the devil." "I don't eat any sugar." Sugar is confusing. While some people only use certain types of sugars, others dismiss them completely. But is this necessary, or even grounded? To help settle the confusion, we spoke to Alan Barclay -- accredited practising dietitian, spokesperson for the Dietitians Association of Australia and Chief Scientific Officer at the Glycemic Index Foundation . "All the sugars are used as a source of fuel, but there are subtle differences in the way they are digested and absorbed," Barclay said. "In foods in Australia, the most common sugars are monosaccharides (glucose, fructose and galactose), but mostly these are occurring as disaccharides (which are sucrose, lactose and maltose)." Monosaccharides and disaccharides are two kinds of simple sugars, which are a form of carbohydrate. Oligosaccharides and polysaccharides, on the other hand, contain more sugar combinations and are known as complex carbohydrates -- for example, whole grain breads, brown rice and sweet potatoes. Monosaccharides require the least effort by the body to break down, meaning they are available for energy more quickly than disaccharides. "Monosaccharides don't require any digestion and can be absorbed into the mouth," Barclay said. "The problem there is they can cause dental caries which is one of the primary reasons why we need to be careful of how much added sugar we're consuming." Glucose -- the body's main source of energy and is found in fruit such as pasta, whole grain bread, legumes and a range of vegetables. Fructose -- this 'fruit sugar' fo Continue reading >>
Negative Effects Of Glucose
Glucose, or blood sugar, is a biomolecule very important to cellular survival. Body cells rely on glucose to fill many of their energy needs, and brain cells are almost completely reliant upon glucose. Like many physiological parameters, however, overly high blood glucose can be as detrimental as overly low blood glucose. Further, too much glucose in the system can lead to negative effects associated with overabundance of cellular energy molecules. Video of the Day Normal levels of glucose in the blood are always a good thing—such normal levels have no negative effects on the body. However, rapidly rising levels of glucose in the blood lead to negative effects. For instance, if individuals eat meals very high in sugar or starch and low in fiber, protein or fat, their blood glucose will increase quickly and dramatically. This, explains Dr. Lauralee Sherwood in her book, "Human Physiology," causes a dramatic insulin release, which signals cells to pull glucose out of the bloodstream quickly. This leads to rapid hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, and a "sugar crash," which most people find is accompanied by feelings of nausea and fatigue. Most individuals' bodies don't allow blood sugar levels to rise too high—a normal pancreas secretes insulin when blood sugar levels rise. Diabetics, however, lack either the ability to produce insulin or the ability to respond to insulin, explains Dr. Gary Thibodeau in his book, "Anatomy and Physiology." As such, in diabetics, blood glucose levels can become very high after a meal. High blood glucose has severe negative effects upon the body. It can lead to thirst, excessive urination, cellular starvation, tissue and organ damage, and even seizures. In cases of uncontrolled diabetes, the high blood sugar that follows a meal can even ca Continue reading >>
What Is Glucose (sugar In The Blood) And What Purpose Does It Serve?
Question: What is glucose (sugar in the blood) and what purpose does it serve? Answer: Glucose, or commonly called sugar, is an important energy source that is needed by all the cells and organs of our bodies. Some examples are our muscles and our brain. Glucose or sugar comes from the food we eat. Carbohydrates such as fruit, bread pasta and cereals are common sources of glucose. These foods are broken down into sugar in our stomachs, and then absorbed into the bloodstream. Normal glucose levels are typically less than 100 milligrams per deciliter, in the morning, when you first wake up, or before eating. We call this the fasting blood glucose or the sugar level. Normal glucose levels 1 to 2 hours after eating are typically less than 140. Next: What Causes High Blood Sugar And What Harm Can It Do To My Body? Continue reading >>
- World's first diabetes app will be able to check glucose levels without drawing a drop of blood and will be able to reveal what a can of coke REALLY does to sugar levels
- Postprandial Blood Glucose Is a Stronger Predictor of Cardiovascular Events Than Fasting Blood Glucose in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, Particularly in Women: Lessons from the San Luigi Gonzaga Diabetes Study
- Lower Blood Sugar Naturally to Prevent High Blood Sugar from Leading to Diabetes
If You Avoid Eating Glucose You May Actually Live Longer
If You Avoid Eating Glucose You May Actually Live Longer Glucose, a type of sugar that your body uses for energy, may be the key to living a long life -- if you avoid it, that is. Researchers from the University of Jena in Germany discovered some very interesting findings about this simple sugar by observing the lifespan of worms. Cookies, candy, sugary breakfast cereals, sweetened fruit juice and doughnuts are all examples of foods that are quickly broken down into glucose by your body. First they blocked the worms' ability to process glucose, which put them into a metabolic state similar to one you would have if you avoided glucose in your diet. Without glucose, something fascinating happened: the worms increased their lifespan by up to 20 percent, which is the equivalent of 15 years of human life. In the United States, however, the average person eats a hefty amount of sugar, which when broken down generates glucose. In fact, sugar makes up anywhere from 15 percent to 20 percent of most people's daily diets! It's already well-known that too much glucose in your body is a bad thing. Under normal circumstances, every time you eat your blood glucose levels will rise slightly. This signals your pancreas to release insulin, which makes sure your blood sugar levels do not get too high. However, if your blood glucose levels remain elevated for too long, it can lead to diabetes and damage to your kidneys, eyes, nerves and blood vessels. Yes, glucose is what provides your body with energy that literally feeds your muscles and cells. It's also used by your brain and is beneficial for learning and memory. In fact, one study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that learning tasks depletes your brain of its glucose reserves. The harder the task, the mor Continue reading >>
Is Sugar Bad For You? Heres How It Destroys Your Body
Dr. Axe on Facebook13260 Dr. Axe on Twitter205 Dr. Axe on Instagram Dr. Axe on Google Plus Dr. Axe on Youtube Dr. Axe on Pintrest5195 Share on Email Print Article Is sugar bad for you? Can itreally have a head-to-toe impact on the human body? When were talking about added sugar, the answer is a resounding yes. Although the sugar industry has actively fought to change public opinionabout the health effects of sugar, we now know today that sugar impacts just about every organ system inthe body. And not in a good way. Im hoping the latest science on sugar will help inspire you to deal with sugar addiction .Lets take a look at the top ways added sugar destroys your body. Is Sugar Bad for You? Heres HowIt Destroys You Health Most people blame dietary fat for heart disease. And while certain industrial, inflammatory fats liketrans fats do cause heart attacks, sugar is the real culprit. In fact, in 2016, researchers unearthed a huge sugar industry scandal , proving that the sugar lobbysponsored phony Harvard research in the 1960s. Turns out the sugar lobby paid Harvard researchers to take the heat off of sugars health effects, instead turning the focus on naturally-occurring fats supposed role in heart disease. ( 1 ) This faulty research concluded there was no doubt that the only dietary intervention required to prevent coronary heart disease was to eat less cholesterol and to eat polyunsaturated fat instead ofsaturated fat. ( 2 ) We now know this is not true. In2014, researchers were able to scientifically show that ingesting too much added sugar could significantly increase your risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. In fact, people getting 17 to 21 percent of calories from added sugar face a 38 percent higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease compared to those Continue reading >>
Why Sugar Is The Worst Thing Ever For You. Seriously. Ever.
Sugar. Highly addictive, horribly debilitating, unfortunately pervasive, and freaking delicious. If I had to point to ONE culprit to our country’s expanding waistlines and rapidly deteriorating health, it would be sugar. The amount of havoc sugar and sugar substitutes have wreaked on our nation is horribly depressing. Fear not, as I’ve come up with the perfect solution! Eat less sugar if you want to live longer. The end. Just kidding, there’s so much more to this story than that. I’m sure you probably have a lot of questions about sugar: Is sugar THAT bad for you? Fruit has sugar! Is fruit bad for you? Are certain kinds of sugar better or worse for you? Can you really get addicted to sugar? What about sugar alternatives that are used in drinks like Diet Coke? What about natural sweeteners? Let’s nerd out about sugar and find out what you can do to kick your sugar habit and get your life back on track. Fair warning: This post is MASSIVE (over 4,000 words), even for Nerd Fitness standards. So before we jump into the GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY of sugar, take a brief moment and enter your email below to download an in-depth, step-by-step guide to the Paleo Diet. American’s love affair with sugar Before we get into the biological and physiological stuff relating to sugar and how it affects our body, I want to talk about just how big of a factor sugar plays in our lives. This might be the most telling statistic relating to sugar, especially when that close to 70% of America is overweight with a THIRD of the nation obese: 1822: Americans consume 45 grams of sugar every five days, or the amount of sugar in a can of coke. 2012: Americans consume 756 grams of sugar every five days, or 130 POUNDS of sugar a year. As we have grown as a country (in more ways than one), Continue reading >>
Biochemistry - Why Is Too Much Glucose Harmful? - Biology Stack Exchange
I learned the citric acid cycle in biotechnology school and how cells work; about ADP and ATP and how the Cellular respiration (C6H12O6 + 6O2 -> 6CO2+6H2O) works. I am interested in understanding why exactly too much glucose is harmful, e.g. when having diabetes. What happens inside the cells so that the organs get damaged over time? Why can't the cells not simply "ignore" the needless glucose or convert it into energy? Affects: all cells that do not depend on insulin to take in glucose. Examples: neurons , kidney cells, retina cells. Causes: high extracellular glucose (in most cases hyperglycemia) Effects: promoting necrotic cell death through $H_2O_2$ (peroxide) formation, which may participate in the development of diabetic vasculopathies and associated disease . Affects: extracellular matrix, cardiac muscle Causes: lack of / low levels of insulin, insulin resistance Effects: enhances collagen production thus affecting kidney by thickening glomerular basal membrane [3, 4]. It promotes cardiomyocyte metabolic stress and altered glucose handling . It is also a potential mechanism involved in cardiac glycogen accumulation . high intracellular glucose in cells that do not depend on insulin to uptake glucose; low intracellular glucose in cells that depend on insulin (muscle and fat tissue). Glucose transports from the blood into the cells via facilitated diffusion. This means that glucose goes from higher concentrations (in the blood) to lower concentration (in the cell). Therefore, if you have super high glucose concentrations in the blood, you will have a ton of glucose in the cells. Glucose will oxidize by itself, thus it will contribute a lot to the oxidative stress experienced by the cell. To answer your question of why they cannot "ignore" it, it is bec Continue reading >>
Is Sugar Bad For You?
It's been demonized and singled out as the cause of the obesity epidemic. But is sugar bad for you? Are all sugars equal? Here's what science has to say. If sugar is bad and toxic, then what should you think about fruit? Its the hypothetical question that rarely gets answered or is even considered for anyone considering a no-sugar diet Before you buy in to the easy-to-sell idea that sugar is the root of all evil, you might want to consider the familiarity of the script. Yesterday, fats were going to kill you. Today, fats are on the path to redemption some are not as unhealthy as we thought , while others have hidden health benefits. But in the minds of many, an obvious enemy has emerged: carbs and, more specifically, sugar And yet, the question remains, is sugar bad for you in any dose, or like almost anything else is the issue more about how much youre eating and where its coming from? When you dig deeper into the science, youll find that going sugar-free might be unnecessary if you want to lose fat, live longer, and feel great every day. Sugar is far more than just the white stuff you spoon into your coffee. (Thats sucrose .) In biochemistry, a sugar is either a monosaccharide or a disaccharide (saccharides being another name for carbohydrates). A disaccharide is a sugar composed of two simple sugars. An oligosaccharide is composed of two to ten simple sugars. A polysaccharide is composed of two or more simple sugars (300 to 1,000 glucose molecules in starch). In short, all carbohydrates are composed of single sugars. If we go back to the example of sucrose, or table sugar, thats actually a disaccharide of the simple sugars glucose and fructose . Meanwhile, starch, dietary fiber, and cellulose are polysaccharides. Thats an important distinction for those of you keepi Continue reading >>
Why Is Too Much Sugar Bad For You?
MORE Each week, MyHealthNewsDaily asks the experts to answer questions about your health. This week, we asked nutritionists and diabetes specialists: Why is excess sugar bad for you? Here's what they said. Dr. Zachary Bloomgarden, professor at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City: Sugar is bad for you a because it has calories, and because if you have diabetes or a diabetes-related condition — lets say high blood fat levels — then having sugar will increase your blood sugar and your triglycerides, which is a risk factor for heart disease. (Triglycerides are a type of fat in the blood.) If you have someone who has diabetes, their problem is that either they aren't producing insulin, or are resistant to it. Without insulin, eating sugar will increase blood sugar. But, essentially, diabetes is not just about blood sugar. It's about, blood sugar and triglycerides, and lipid levels. Sugar is very calorie-dense. So you can easily consume a lot of sugar in soft drinks, and in all kinds of food that contain added sugar. It's not that the sugar calories are more fattening than any other calories. It's just calories are calories, and sugar packs a lot. + + + Rachel Johnson, professor of nutrition at the University of Vermont in Burlington: The bottom line is that sugar does one of two things. It either displaces more nutritious foods in your diet, which means you're screening out nutritious-dense foods, or it adds calories to your diet. So if you're adding calories on top of an already nutritious diet that puts you at risk for weight gain. There's been a lot of research in recent years looking at the impact of added sugars — not the sugar naturally occurring in fruits and dairy products. What we know is that added sugars put you at a higher risk for a poor li Continue reading >>
Just How Bad Is Sugar For Your Heart And Body?
Just How Bad Is Sugar For Your Heart And Body? Sugar is important for us... in small doses. Still nibbling Valentine's Day goodies? Munching packaged cereals, pancakes or muffins for breakfast? Enjoying a lunch of processed meats and bread, sweetened pasta sauce, or even a salad drenched in dressing? Sugar makes all of these foods delicious. It is also an important energy source for our bodies. It's what we use when we're doing vigorous activities and it's the primary source of fuel for our brain. We need it. The problem is, many of us eat far too much sugar. And we eat it in its simplest, processed form. This excess of sugar in our diets increases the risks of health conditions such as obesity, insulin resistance, diabetes, atherosclerosis, high blood cholesterol and hypertension. It also significantly increases the risks of premature death from heart disease . Our bodies are designed to digest sugar in its naturally occurring form found in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. In these foods simple sugar molecules are joined together in a chain. Our small intestine cannot absorb sugar in the form of a carbohydrate chain (commonly known as starch), so these foods are slowly broken down, with one sugar molecule cleaved off at a time before it can be absorbed. This is like taking a long train and removing one box car at a time. When we eat sugar in its simplest form, such as sucrose (a combination of a glucose and fructose molecule), there is no chain to break down. So instead, a flood of sugar is released into the bloodstream all at once. We often feel this as an energy rush. Insulin is then released to shuttle the glucose into our muscles, liver and other organs to be stored for later energy use. This can leave us feeling lethargic and hungry after the spike in glucose Continue reading >>
All Sugars Aren't The Same: Glucose Is Better, Study Says
Correction Appended: April 21, 2009 Think that all sugars are the same? They may all taste sweet to the tongue, but it turns out your body can tell the difference between glucose, fructose and sucrose, and that one of these sugars is worse for your health than the others. In the first detailed analysis comparing how our systems respond to glucose (which is made when the body breaks down starches such as carbohydrates) and fructose, (the type of sugar found naturally in fruits), researchers at the University of California Davis report in the Journal of Clinical Investigation that consuming too much fructose can actually put you at greater risk of developing heart disease and diabetes than ingesting similar amounts of glucose. In the study, 32 overweight or obese men and women were randomly assigned to drink 25% of their daily energy requirements in either fructose- or glucose-sweetened drinks. The researchers took pains to eliminate as many intruding factors as possible by asking the volunteers to commit to a 12-week program; for the first and last two weeks of the study, each subject lived at UCD's Clinical and Translational Science Center, where they underwent rigorous blood tests to determine their insulin and lipid levels, among other metabolic measures. (Take a quiz on eating smart.) Both groups gained similar amounts of weight by the end of the 12 weeks, but only the people drinking fructose-sweetened beverages with each meal showed signs of unhealthy changes in their liver function and fat deposits. In this group, the liver churned out more fat, while the subjects consuming similar amounts of glucose-sweetened drinks showed no such change. The fructose-drinking volunteers also were not as sensitive to insulin, the hormone released by the pancreas to capture and br Continue reading >>