Benefits of Reducing Added Sugar in Your Diet
Some foods have natural sugars that you can't avoid, but many foods have added sugar that can be avoided. Eliminating most added sugar from your diet has multiple benefits. Read on to learn about these benefits.
All of the calories you consume must be used through physical exertion, or else they'll be stored on your body as added weight. Because sugar is especially high in calories, its consumption accounts for a significant portion of the extra weight that many people have.
Reducing your added sugar intake will significantly reduce how many calories you consume, at a rate of 4 calories per every 1 gram of sugar. If you reduce your sugar intake by 50 grams, that's 200 fewer calories that you have to burn just to maintain your weight. You could see a significant weight reduction in a relatively short amount of time.
The theoretical link between sugar intake and weight has been demonstrated by a study that examined whether people lost or gained weight when their sugar consumption changed. Study participants who had less sugar lowered their weight by an average of 2 pounds over a period of 10 weeks. Those who had more sugar increased their weight by an average of 2 pounds.
If these results are extrapolated for the duration of an entire year, a 2-pound loss every 10 weeks would equate to lowering your weight by 10.2 points within a year. That's in addition to any other diet or exercise measures you take.
Reducing your weight has multiple benefits. Not only does your cardiovascular system have an easier time functioning, but your knees sustain less impact when you walk or run.
Lower Triglyceride Levels
Triglycerides are a type of fat that's found in the bloodstream. While they're an important energy source for the body, too many triglycerides aren't healthy. Excess fat circulating in your blood places an undue strain on your cardiovascular system.
Approximately 25.9 percent of adults in the United States have elevated triglyceride levels, which are defined as above 150 mg/dL. One contributing factor is high sugar intake.
When too much sugar is consumed, some of the excess sugar that's not burned off is converted into triglycerides. When the glucose molecules of sugar are broken down, they'll transform into triglyceride fats if not quickly expended. The triglycerides will circulate in the blood until eventually they eventually join the body's various fat deposits.
Improve Your Nutrition Intake
Even if you replace sugar calories with calories from other foods, your overall nutrition will benefit.
Sugary treats have virtually no nutritional value beyond providing energy, which other foods also do well. Eating other foods will give your body vitamins, minerals, and proteins that are needed for a robust immune system and healthy body. The exact nutrients you'll get depend on what other foods you eat, but anything should be better than added sugar.
Moreover, you don't necessarily have to avoid treats in order to get these other nutrients. Cookies, cakes, and other desserts that have no or low added sugar often have some of these other, better nutrients.
Avoid Sugar Crashes
The glucose molecules of sugar provide a short-term boost of energy, but your body is left depleted of energy after the initial boost. The result is the classic sugar crash that leaves people lethargic (and often makes children whiny).
Eating other foods that have better nutrients, especially proteins, will give your body more long-term energy. Proteins take much longer for the body to break down and use, so you'll be able to sustain physical activity without getting tired too quickly.
If you want to reduce how much sugar you consume on a regular basis, check out the bundles of low-sugar treats that we at Nush Foods have.