How Does Sugar in Our Diet Affect Our Health?

Sugar is sweet but does it make you sweet as well? Sweet or not it does have a tremendous bit of effect on the body. Everyone consumes “free sugars”, as they are called, in drinks, food, syrups, honey, and even unsweetened syrups. These foods supply all the energy needed for functioning properly and sometimes contains excess nutrients. This means that consuming more of these sweet foods translates to extra calories which evidently lead to obesity and weight gain.

An average adult should consume 30grams of sugar or seven cubes on a daily basis. The daily consumable amount for children between 4 and 6 years should be 19grams and between 7 and 10 years should be around 24grams. Milk and fresh fruits also contain sugar which need not be cut down. Sugar serves the important function of enhancing the quality of food, its palatability, preservation and also helps improves the colour, body, texture and browning capability of the cooked food etc. It also helps in the digestion of vegetables, fruits, and fibre. The addition of sugar to any food creates a balance in taste and makes it enjoyable.

Excess sugar in drinks and foods can cause tooth decay if the mouth is not washed properly and it remains in contact with the teeth. Not just the free sugars but the ones present in fruits also create the same effect when they are blended. Turning the fruit into juice helps in releasing the sugar content in them which can be harmful to the teeth. Dried fruits used in desserts are considered harmless unless they stick to your teeth and cause decay.

Consuming sugar in excess quantity can also lead to excess weight. Obesity is one of the leading causes of heart diseases, breathing problem, certain types of cancers, arthritis and many more diseases. Too much sugar also leads to diabetes, fatty liver, hypertension, and high cholesterol. Sugar has an addictive quality which is often equated with that of cocaine. It moves the pleasure centre of the brain and tends to make you crave more of sweet foods. It often happens that the body does not need the number of pleasure foods that are available in the market or the body makes you eat. But the sugary magic lies in the fact that the brain convinces you that a particular sweet food is needed by the body.

Sugar also has the ability to make you feel hungry when you are not actually hungry in the body. A sudden craving for ice-cream hardly makes you think about the number of calories that you will be consuming in one sitting. In fact, it is difficult to consume the same amount of boiled vegetables at any point in time.

Sugar is processed by the body best only when it is small amounts. It is the best source of energy needed by the body to run its functions. It also helps you to store protein and fat in the body which in turn is necessary for certain body functions and maintaining its normal functioning.

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