Do you need sugar? What happens if you take too much sugar?

Dr. Liau
Dr. Liau

Functional Medicine

Sugary foods are common in the typical diet because they taste good. Sugar is used in various kinds of food to enhance flavor, extend shelf life and produce the desired texture. Nonetheless, sugar is not a healthy food. Sugar intake per day should be between 6 and 9 teaspoons. However, most people consume more sugar than suggested. If this continues on a long-term basis, it may cause chronic diseases.

 Knowing the outcome of consuming too much sugar will motivate you to be responsible for your health and reduce your sugar intake.

Risk of developing obesity, diabetes, and heart disease
Added sugar increases the daily caloric intake by hundreds of extra calories to your daily caloric intake. These extra calories will contribute to unhealthy weight gain over time. Sugary food does not contain a healthy amount of protein or fiber, so it won’t satisfy your hunger. It increases the chances of overeating and leading to obesity and the risk of developing diabetes and heart diseases.

 Cause problems in body parts (pancreas and kidney)
When too much sugar is consumed, the pancreas would have to work harder to pump out more insulin. This would cause an increase in sugar level in the blood. Kidneys play a vital role in filtering your blood. When your blood sugar levels exceed a certain level, your kidneys begin to excrete extra sugar into your urine. It would then lead to diabetes which will destroy the kidneys, preventing them from removing waste from your blood, resulting in kidney failure.

 Effect towards behavior and cognition in children.
Disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), bipolar disorder, and even violent behaviour in children can be related to sugar consumption. This is because the blood glucose level fluctuates and causes mood swings which lead to aggressive behaviour. Sugar also causes a decrease in the brain’s synaptic activity. It would impede the memory of children, slowing down their brain’s ability to learn.

Cause addiction
Excessive sugar causes the brain to produce a large amount of a feel-good hormone – dopamine, to make you feel a pleasurable “high”, making you crave more. The only way to have the feeling again is to repeat the behaviour of taking in more sugar. That is why sugar is said to be a drug-like substance.

Impact on sexual health
Around 75% of men suffering from diabetes experience issues with their sexual health over the lifetime. Sugar damages the nervous and circulatory system, which regulates blood supply in the body. The absorption of glucose from the blood will cause it to be less sensitive. Making it harder to maintain an erection. Hence, you might want to skip the dessert on date night!

Here’s what you can do to cut down on sugar
Start eating more fruits and vegetables, drink more water, and cut out the sugar bit by bit. Next, start exercise to help wipe out sugar cravings. Filter out high sugar food before going shopping too.

 You are what you eat! Reduce your sugar intake now to prevent unwanted diseases and effects on the body. Start a healthy diet by reaching out to our doctors for professional advice now! For more information, schedule an appointment with us now.

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