We all know added sugar can make you become overweight, but did you know that sugar is addictive? Especially if you tend to lean on it during stressful times. It's easy to eat a piece of cake after a birthday party or order a dessert when you're out to dinner, but if you're trying to stay on the keto diet or improve your health, overall sugar is just a bad idea.
If you can't live without sugar, remember that sweeteners like xylitol, stevia, and erythritol can be made a part of your keto diet, but pure versions are best. Examples are the powdered products that usually only have a small amount of sugar added.
Sugar, honey, agave nectar, and high-fructose corn syrup are not good and you should stay away from them. Even if agave and honey are healthy whole foods, sugar can and will still bump you out of ketosis.
Besides, many people don't realize how harmful sugar can be. Not only does it make us tired and overweight, but it can lead to many health problems, including heart disease.
“People generally know that sugar isn't good, but they don't appreciate how powerfully negative it really is,” says Donald Hensrud, medical director of the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program.
Eating too much sugar contributes to numerous health problems, including weight gain, Type 2 diabetes, dental caries, metabolic syndrome and heart disease, and even indirectly to cancer because of certain cancers' relationship to obesity. It also can keep you from consuming healthier things. “Kids who are drinking sugar-sweetened beverages aren't drinking milk,” Hensrud says.
Between 2003 and 2010, Americans consumed about 14 percent of their total daily calories from added sugars, much of it from sugar-sweetened beverages, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend an intake of added sugar of less than 10 percent of calories. In a 2,000-calorie daily diet, that means less than 200 calories. Ten percent would amount to about 50 grams of sugar, according to Hensrud, who points out that food labels list sugar-per-serving in grams, making it easy to calculate. (With four grams to a teaspoon, that's about 12 teaspoons.)
Over the past 30 years, American adults' consumption of sugar increased by more than 30 percent, from 228 calories a day to 300, according to a study released last year. “This is equivalent to eating an additional 15 pounds of sugar a year,” Hensrud sayes.
Indeed, when people say they have a sweet tooth, they really are suffering from a “sweet brain” – because that's where sugar rules. Sugar resembles other abused substances in that “it is reinforcing and can change how you feel,” says former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner David Kessler, whose 2009 book “The End of Overeating” describes the science behind Americans' obsession with sugar. “It's rewarding. And it's self-administered.”
Even though the keto diet allows for some sugar, it's best to save the sweets for special days, such as on Christmas morning and New Year's Eve. Birthday parties are nice to allow yourself to have an occasional sweet or two as well. Perhaps you'll find yourself not even craving sugar after experiencing the benefits of the keto diet.
If you still find sugar is too far a temptation, keep it far away by implementing small techniques such as not standing by a buffet table. If you take home a dessert try giving it a friend instead of eating them yourself. When it's time to go grocery shopping avoid the aisles that have sugary treats and try not to head to the store when you're hungry. Instead, go to the grocery store prepared with a list of the foods you need and leave with nothing more.
This is exactly why Bill McIntosh wrote BodyReboot. The book reveals how to quickly kick the sugar habit, lose weight & achieve long term health. The advice in new & powerfully effective.
To see why else sugar is dangerous to our health visit Chicago Tribune.
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