We all have a pretty good sense that sugar is “bad” for us, but other than the added calories, why is it “bad?”  And what is defined as “bad” sugar?  According to Tiffany Cruikshank in her book Optimal Health for a Vibrant Life, “sugar is just as habit forming as any narcotic; and its use and abuse is one of our nation’s top disasters.”  She goes on to explain that the chemical formula of Sugar and Cocaine vary by only ONE letter!

So, what is sugar, really?  Is there good sugar?

Sugar is sugar, whether it comes from fruit glucose or fruit cake or honey or corn, once it’s in your body, it is processed the same.  The difference is, sugar found in fruit is accompanied by fiberous matter (the skin and body of the fruit,) and phytonutrients present in the whole food.  The fiberous matter work synergestically together to allow the sugar glucose to slowly process through the body, (which reduces the chance of an insulin spike and feelings of highs and lows.)  On the other hand, simple sugar, such as the white refined sugar in your fruit cake, cheese cake, muffin, or mocha latte, is not accompanied by fiberous whole food phytonutrients so the body must borrow calcium, sodium, potassium, and magnesium from various parts of the body to process the sugar.  Accompanied by this, the pancreas kicks on to release quite a bit of insulin to help take care of the sugar.  Insulin makes us feel anxious, happy, and fast, once the sugar is taken care of, the pancreas turns the insulin levels down and we feel sluggish, tired and slow…and so we grab for more caffeine and/or sugar, and on and on it goes!  The body is an amazing machine, but by eating too much sugar, we trip its ability to function optimally.

The truth is, too much glucose sugar can overload the body just as simple sugar does, so listening to your body is important.  If you’re feeling a sugar high from eating fruit, you may have eaten something that is too sweet for you, or you may have eaten too much of it!  Recent research has found that curbing the sugar craze is more critical than just trying to shed a few pounds, eating less sugar might just change and extend your life.

25 Reases Why Sugar May Ruin Your Day

(there are more, but here are 25 to start…)

1) suppresses your immune system

2) interferes with the essential nutrient balance in your body, specifically calcium and magnesium

3) Increases levels of bad cholesterol and triglycerides

4) Shown to be connected to the development of various types of cancer – breast, ovaries, prostate, rectum, pancreas, lung, gallbladder, and stomach.

5) Can cause hypoglycemia

6) leads to alcoholism

7) Contributes to weight gain (as insulin levels rise, body stores fat.)

8) Causes autoimmune diseases such as arthritis, asthma, and multiple sclerosis

9) Greatly increases the growth of Candida Albicans (yeast)

10) Causes vericose veins

11) Causes drowsiness and decreased activity

12) makes your skin age by changing the structure of collagen

13) Increases the size of the kidney, which can ultimately cause kidney stones

14) Increases the size of the liver, increasing the amount of liver fat

15) Makes your tendons brittle

16) Causes depression

17) Causes food allergies

18) Interferes with the absorption of protein

19) Increase your risk for Alzheimer’s disease

20) Causes hormonal imbalances – increases estrogen in men, increasing PMS symptoms, decreases growth hormones

21) Promotes excessive food intake

22) Damage your pancreas

23) Cause gum disease

24) Addictive substance

25) Causes headaches, including migrains