Halloween is just around the corner, which means one thing: Candy. It is the season to be excessive, to steal your kid’s candy under the pretence of protecting their teeth, only to regret it a few hours later when you’re bursting with cheap chocolate and sugary treats.
Even if you have the willpower to say no, to leave your little ones to their haul and let the season slip by without a single chocolate passing your lips, you still have to think about your kids. Sugar may taste great and it may be as much a part of Halloween as old sheets, fake blood, and horror films, but it can do some serious damage to your health or the health of your kids.
Still not convinced? Take a look at these shocking facts as we look at some of the ways that sugar can harm your health.
Your blood sugar levels experience a sharp rise and fall when you eat sugar and this can impact on your mood and your health. The idea that sugar can make children hyperactive is largely misunderstood and misrepresented, but it can cause them to crash, at which point they may experience everything from fatigue to headaches and depression.
These effects are also present in adults, and there’s more.
Sugar can also cause cravings during the crash. When you experience these cravings you want more sugar, which means the cycle just repeats.
Think about the last time that you ate a high protein meal, such as eggs and steak. You felt full, and you probably remained that way for several hours. On the flip side, when you eat a high sugar meal, such as processed Chinese food or a dessert, you feel full for up to an hour and then you start to feel hungry again.
This is thought to be one of the main reasons why high sugar diets can cause obesity, but it also has to do with the fact that sugar is a high-calorie and low-nutrient food.
Everyone knows about the link between Type 2 Diabetes and sugar intake, but did you know that excessive sugar intake can also increase your risk of heart disease and cancer?
One study found that people who consumed high sugar diets were 40% more likely to die from heart disease. A diet high in sugar can also lead to more inflammation and insulin resistance—two leading causes of cancer. It’s also worth noting that high-sugar diets are a leading contributor to obesity, which is one of the biggest killers in the United States and is responsible for the disproportionately high rates of heart disease, bowel cancer, and diabetes found throughout the country.
Sugar provides an instant energy rush, but this is short-lived. Not only does it follow an instant drop in blood sugar levels, leading to fatigue as discussed above, but it can also have a damaging effect long term. Sugar has no beneficial nutrients. If you’re consuming 2,000 calories a day and a quarter of that is sugar, that means there is less room for actual beneficial calories, ones that provide minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and fibre.
And if you’re consuming extra calories to meet your recommended dietary intakes, you’ll be more prone to lethargy resulting from overeating, not to mention an increased risk of obesity.
This one might surprise you—not only can a high-sugar diet have a marked effect on your physical health and short-term mental health, but it can also make you prone to depression and other mental health issues in the long run.
Countless studies have found a connection between sugar consumption and depression. Of course, you could argue that people who are depressed are more likely to reach for the things that make them feel good, including sugary treats, so a correlation is to be expected. But the most noteworthy studies were conducted on people who reported a “normal” baseline, with researchers noting that patients were more likely to develop depression at a later date if they consumed a high sugar diet.
Sugar can damage your liver in the same way that alcohol can. Your liver breaks down fructose and if you’re consuming a lot of this then your liver can become overloaded, leading to a fatty build-up. The liver is a resilient organ and can repair itself, but if this damage is consistent it could be seriously detrimental to your health.
This issue is said to affect as many as 30% of Americans and someone who consumes high-sugar treats and drinks are over 50% more likely to develop this issue than someone who does not.
Try to limit your sugar intake on Halloween, and any other time of year for that matter. It’s okay to enjoy a little treat every now and then, but as discussed above, once you start overdoing it then your body begins to suffer.
If you or your children are planning to indulge a little this Halloween, then make sure you take advantage of our Halloween Daily Detox promotion.
“Obesity is more deadly than smoking”.
That’s a headline-worthy of an eye-roll or two. It oozes scare-mongering and reeks of click-baiting. However, it’s also backed by research. Believe it or not, being obese does increase your mortality risk more than s