Nutrition experts say no more than 5% of daily calories should come from added sugar – about seven teaspoons.
Most people consume at least twice this limit.
A sugar-laden diet may raise your risk of dying of heart disease even if you aren’t overweight. Added sugars make up at least 10% of the calories the average Nigerian eats in a day. But about one in 10 people get a whopping one-quarter or more of their calories from added sugar.
Sugar-sweetened beverages such as sodas, energy drinks, and sports drinks are by far the biggest sources of added sugar in the average Nigerian’s diet. They account for more than one-third of the added sugar we consume as a nation. Other important sources include cookies, cakes, pastries, and similar treats; fruit drinks; ice cream, frozen yogurt and the like; candy; and ready-to-eat cereals.
Nutritionists frown on added sugar for two reasons. One is its well-known links to weight gain and cavities. The other is that sugar delivers “empty calories” — calories unaccompanied by fiber, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. Too much added sugar can crowd healthier foods from a person’s diet.
Exactly how excess sugar might harm the heart isn’t clear. Earlier research has shown that drinking sugar-sweetened beverages can raise blood pressure. A high-sugar diet may also stimulate the liver to dump more harmful fats into the bloodstream. Both factors are known to boost heart disease risk.
For a Fact Here are some Reasons Why Sugar is Bad for YOU
1. Sugar can Cause Insulin resistance, a step towards type 2 diabetes:
Insulin is a very important hormone in the body.
It allows glucose (blood sugar) to enter cells from the bloodstream and tells the cells to start burning glucose instead of fat.
Having too much glucose in the blood is highly toxic and one of the reasons for complications of diabetes, like blindness.
One feature of the metabolic dysfunction that is caused by the Western diet, is that insulin stops working as it should. The cells become “resistant” to it.
This is also known as insulin resistance, which is believed to be a leading driver of many diseases… including metabolic syndrome, obesity, cardiovascular disease and especially type II diabetes.
Many studies show that sugar consumption is associated with insulin resistance, especially when it is consumed in large amounts.
2. Added Sugar is harmful for your teeth and have no Essential Nutrient:
Added sugars (like sucrose and high fructose corn syrup) contain a whole bunch of calories with NO essential nutrients.
For this reason, they are called “empty” calories.
There are no proteins, essential fats, vitamins or minerals in sugar… just pure energy.
When people eat up to 10-20% of calories as sugar (or more), this can become a major problem and contribute to nutrient deficiencies.
Sugar is also very bad for the teeth, because it provides easily digestible energy for the bad bacteria in the mouth.
There are many dangers associated with consuming more sugar than our body requires.
The bottom line is to reduce the quantity of sugar we consume through various means and live a healthy happy life.
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