I read a recent article by Mike Zimmerman in Men’s Health about sugar. In it, Mr Zimmerman interviewed leading obesity researchers and health professionals across the country. With the trend toward skyrocketing obesity and type 2 diabetes rates, it’s important to understand the truth about sugar. The following is a synopsis of that article.

Sugars and starches are broken down into glucose, which the muscles prefer and the brain depends on for fuel. Without it we wouldn’t survive. When you have too much sugar, your body can’t clear it, and the glucose thickens the blood. The kidneys then pump more water into the blood to try to thin it, thus becoming overworked (which is why you see a lot of diabetics with kidney failure). Diabetes is all about not being able to clear glucose. The extra glucose goes on to damage nerves, organs, etc. It forces your pancreas to work overtime to pump enough insulin to clear glucose, and your tissues become more and more resistant to insulin. As I’ve said before, insulin takes the extra glucose and stores it as fat. What’s the common treatment for diabetes? Give you more insulin, which makes you even fatter. Doesn’t sound right, does it?…… What should you do? Maintain a healthy weight, avoid high-fructose corn syrup in anything. A lot of people drink large amounts of soda with sweet snacks, white breads, pasta-a recipe for health disaster. Try to combine those high-glycemic foods (foods which break down very quickly) with foods higher in protein and fat.

If you consume large amounts of sugar at meals, you get large spikes in blood sugar and subsequently, insulin. Repeated blood sugar spikes stress the organs that make up the metabolic engine of your body. End result, a huge toll on those organs, and a premature death. The less stress you put on this system, the longer it will function properly.

Stay well, John R Blilie, M.S.