Sugar is by and large one of the most damaging things in our modern day diet. It’s the root of many diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, high cholesterol and blood pressure, fatty liver disease, metabolic syndrome…the list goes on and on.
Next time you’re opening a box of pre packaged foods take a glance at the ingredients and read them closely. If I were a gambling man, I’d put my money on the fact that you will find some type of added sugar. Sugar is added to almost all prepackaged foods because it adds flavor most people love and acts as a preservative to extend it’s shelf life. It’s easy to overlook much of it, even foods marketed as “health foods” have added sugars. Yogurts, granola, cereals, nut butters, beef jerky… The list goes on and on.
The short answer is because we eat sugar. It’s a vicious cycle.
1. We eat sugar. We like the taste and it does in fact have addictive properties.
2. It signals a release of dopamine into the brain making us feel good.
3. Massive amounts of insulin is secreted into the blood causing our blood sugar to drop dramatically.
4. This spike in insulin causes immediate fat storage. Body craves more of the dopamine.
5. Low blood sugar causes the appetite to grow and the cravings to kick back in and we’re back to the start.
If you’re unsure how to read between the tricky wording of the ingredient lists and decipher the good from bad, stick to foods in the natural state. If you plan on eating it in the form in which it grew naturally, it’s likely a safe choice. If it comes in a box and/or has a list of ingredients that sound like you wouldn’t find anywhere but a chemistry experiment stay away.
NASM, Certified Personal Trainer