Hide and Seek with Sugar
If you try to cut sugar out entirely, you will get some sugar in your daily diet. For example, even though they aren’t necessarily sweet, green non-starchy veggies and raw nuts contain a little sugar. In fact, 2 cups of broccoli contain about 5 grams of sugar.
Sugar wrecks havoc on your immune system by:
- Crashing your blood sugar
- Causing fatigue and bloating
- Stores as fat
- Sets the stage for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer
A cup of blueberries contains 15 grams of sugar. However, nature packaged blueberries (and many other fruits) with nutrients, fiber, antioxidants, and many other compounds that cumulatively reduce the bulk sugar content. This creates a relatively low glycemic index. In fact, studies have shown that consuming blueberries can help normalize blood sugar levels naturally and reduce your risk for diabetes.
Alternatively, put the same 15 grams of sugar in processed foods and an entirely different result occurs causing blood sugar levels to rise. It is the addition of antioxidants and nutrients that help buffer out the effect sugar has on the body. This is an important distinction to consider in your daily diet and during detox.
“Sugar-Free” and “No Sugar Added” Terminology
With studies revealing the truth about sugar and its effects on the body, manufacturers developed the “guilt-free” version of your favorites.
Here is the breakdown of two of the most common disclaimers:
“Sugar-free” foods or drinks may not have sugar, but frequently contains artificial sweeteners and/or sugar alcohols instead, which can cause many unpleasant results, such as gastric upset. In fact, studies have yet to examine the effects of many of these artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols over extended periods of time. This is why it is important to take control of your health and hormones through positive food, exercise, and mental health choices.
“No sugar added” foods and drinks may not have sugar but they likely contain artificial sugars and alcohol-based sweeteners, which can produce addictive side effects in some people. Choosing “no sugar added” over sugar may still result in the addictive result you were avoiding, which is why label reading is so important, especially during detox.
You won’t find a “sugar-free” or “no sugar added” label on vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and other whole unprocessed foods. They may contain small amounts of sugar, but that sugar is a far cry from the heavily processed high-fructose corn syrup in packaged foods.