Updated: Jan 8, 2021
Sugar is 4x more addictive than cocaine, yet sugar is socially acceptable and we use it as a reward for our children.
We know it is unhealthy for obvious reasons like causing tooth decay, fluctuations in blood sugar levels and increases weight gain, but did you know the following:
- Sugar causes inflammation in the body, and the brain. I, and many other health professionals, believe the root cause of all disease is inflammation;
- Do you wonder why you and/or your family keep getting sick? Sugar impedes the immune system for hours after eating it;
- Sugar exasperates symptoms of anxiety, and anxiety disorders in children are setting new records;
- Eating sugar gives us a quick high where we feel good, energetic and happy. This is followed by rapidly decreased blood sugar levels and leaves a person feeling fatigued with low mood, until you grab your next sugary snack to quickly raise your blood sugar levels again. It is a rollercoaster, and causes great stress on the body. Watch your children’s emotions as they take this rollercoaster;
- When you eat sugar, you tend to eat less fruit leaving your body deprived of important vitamins and antioxidants.
The impact of sugar in our bodies is far more serious than we are made aware of. As parents, it is our duty and responsibility to educate and provide healthy food that will encourage good physical and emotional development in our children.
We are training their taste buds.
First, be a good role model and practice what you preach. If you drink pop/soda everyday, your argument for your child to avoid sugar/pop is not going to stand strong.
They mirror your behavior and eating habits.
It is my experience that overweight parents teach their children the same eating habits that they were taught by their parents, making them also victims to the fight against being overweight or obese.
Sure, inherited DNA plays a role on your health, but you have the ability to turn on and off those signals. Give your kids the chance you may not have had, and educate yourselves and them, so that the cycle of being overweight, having a bad body image and all the other ailments that follow, come to an end.
It is not easy trying to sift through the abundance of foods in the grocery stores today to determine what is healthy. Clever marketing is even tricking the most educated people.
1. Eat foods as close to their natural state as possible. Foods tampered with during processing tend to have sugar added and are less nutritious than the food taken from the ground and put on our plates.
2. Eat fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds, rather than pre-packaged snacks. It is better for you, and the environment. Think of all the plastic wastage on one-time used snacks/bars.
3. Start reading labels and calculating the sugar content. 4g = 1 tsp of sugar. Consider the portion size e.g. 1/3 cup. You do the maths. I can assure you, you will be shocked.
4. Avoid juice/pop – drink water! Flavour it with fresh fruit slices or sliced cucumber.
5. Keep a food diary. You will be amazed how conscious you become on what is going into your body over a 24 hour period.