Myth: sugar causes diabetes
We all know the stereotype – if you’ve got diabetes, you must have eaten too much sugar. But, with this sweet ingredient found in so much of our food – and, recently, so many of our newspapers – what’s the truth about sugar? And how does it affect diabetes?
What is sugar?
Sugar is found naturally in fruit, vegetables and dairy foods. It’s also added to food and drink by food manufacturers, or by ourselves at home. The debate about sugar and health is mainly around the ‘added sugars’. This includes:
table sugar that we add to our hot drinks or breakfast cereal
caster sugar, used in baking
sugars hidden in sauces, ready meals, cakes and drinks.
Does sugar cause diabetes?
There are two main types of diabetes – Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
In Type 1 diabetes, the insulin producing cells in your pancreas are destroyed by your immune system. No amount of sugar in your diet – or anything in your lifestyle – has caused or can cause you to get Type 1 diabetes.
With Type 2 diabetes, though we know sugar doesn’t directly causes Type 2 diabetes, you are more likely to get it if you are overweight. You gain weight when you take in more calories than your body needs, and sugary foods and drinks contain a lot of calories.
And it's important to add that fatty foods and drinks are playing a part in our nation's expanding waistline.
So you can see if too much sugar is making you put on weight, then you are increasing your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes. But Type 2 diabetes is complex, and sugar is unlikely to be the only reason the condition develops.
If I have diabet Continue reading