Regardless of how strong your will might be, kicking sugar from your daily eating habits can be challenging.
What’s more, research has shown that sugar can influence your brain into thinking that your body needs more and more of it. This is a tough pill to swallow, especially for those of us who are interested in losing a bit of belly fat, clearing up our skin, or improving our overall energy levels so that they last longer. However, naturally occurring sugars in fruits and vegetables contain good vitamins, minerals, fiber, and other nutrients. These sugars found in whole foods are necessary to maintain balance in your health and wellness. But if you can cut back on added sugar, you will begin to see just how many health benefits you miss out on if you aren’t prioritizing a sugar-free diet. This article lists several health benefits to cutting added sugar from your diet, and hopefully, they will motivate you to give it a shot.
I think it’s safe to say that we all want to look younger than we are, especially as we enter that phase of life when the wrinkles start showing up. Studies have revealed that added sugar in your diet affects the amount of sugar in your bloodstream, and high blood sugar levels lead to what is called “glycation.” Glycation is essentially a process by which the repair of your skin’s collagen (the main structural protein in your skin that promotes its vibrancy) can be hindered. Collagen also adds elasticity to your skin, helping it appear more youthful and healthy. Sugary treats in your daily diet will ultimately lead to premature wrinkles and reduce your skin’s elasticity. The internal stress in your body caused by spikes and falls in your blood sugar levels can lead to breakouts, as well as dehydration of your skin. Replacing processed and added sugars with nourishing foods and plenty of water will boost your confidence by helping you look more fresh and youthful.
Sugar can give your energy levels whiplash. Whenever you eat a sugary treat, the spike in your blood sugar levels enhances your mood and alertness. However, these fall quickly after insulin releases into your cells. Often this drop in blood sugar can make you feel weak, shaky, and even moody. Replacing sugar with nutritious foods will bring more stable energy levels, improving not only your physical wellness but your mental as well. The rollercoaster of high and low blood sugar levels may accentuate mental health disorders such as depression and, in extreme cases, schizophrenia. Research has shown that because sugar is one of the root causes of chronic inflammation, the immune system, brain, and other bodily systems weaken, making you more susceptible to depression. Additionally, sugar can also be addictive, and while this is a controversial claim, recent studies have demonstrated that this is true. So, cutting sugar from your diet doesn’t just improve your physical health, but also your mind.
A major consequence of excessive added sugar intake is obesity, and this, in turn, can raise the risk of high blood pressure. Simply put, high blood pressure makes your heart work harder, causing damage to your arteries and even the whole circulatory system. Eventually, high blood pressure can and will lead to heart disease, heart attacks, kidney damage, strokes, and more. Evidence suggests that added sugars like fructose can lead to insulin resistance and metabolic dysfunction regardless of obesity or not. Cutting back on sugar will help you avoid these health problems. Nevertheless, don’t beat yourself up if you happen to cheat every now and again. Sometimes it is downright impossible to resist a slice of cake or pie or stealing some of your kids’ Halloween candy. Be realistic, and start with small steps. As you cut back on sugar, you will feel younger, healthier, and have more energy to devote to improving other aspects of your life and reaching your goals.