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  • Writer's pictureHeather

Debunking 7 Myths To Help You Build A Healthy Relationship With Sugar

Where do you stand when it comes to the great sugar debate? Do you believe that sugar needs to be banned from your diet, or do you think that sugar in moderation is OK? To help you understand, it is necessary first to debunk the seven most common myths about sugar.

1. It's All Bad

The major oversimplification of sugar is that it is all bad. Naturally occurring sugar is not the enemy; added sugar is. When you eat fruit or plain dairy, there are natural sugars, but that sugar is combined with other nutrients that offset the potential negatives of sugar consumption. However, when you drizzle honey over your yogurt or add sugar to cookies, you increase your sugar intake, which is bad. Therefore, don't worry about sugar in fruit and other natural products, but do concern yourself with added sugar.

2. It Should be Banned

Sugar is not a necessity for living. You can cut added sugar out of your diet if you would like, but that too is unnecessary. The American Heart Association and the U.S. Dietary Guidelines both stipulate a daily allowance of sugar that is healthy and safe. As with everything else in dieting, it is about moderation, not banishment.

3. Where It Comes From Matters

People often assume that minimally processed or natural sugars are better for you, but the truth is it is all the same to your body. While some items, like honey, will have more nutrients than white sugar, the nutrients will have limited overall benefits to your health. All your body will see is monosaccharides, which is what all sources of sugar become.

4. It Is Making You Ill

Sugar is often made out to be the bringer of doomsday. People speculate that it is linked to heart disease, cancer and even Alzheimer's disease, none of which is true. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that added sugar consumption did not increase the risk of death. However, the crucial point of their study was not to overdo it, but any food that you eat in excess can cause health problems, even brown rice.

5. You Cannot Avoid It

Many people dive into conspiracy theorists mode, believing that sugar is unavoidable and that the food industry is out to get them. Truthfully, you can avoid added sugar. You need to read labels and learn about proper nutrition. Sugar is not the enemy; poor eating habits are the primary issue for many people.

6. Replacements and Alternatives Are Healthier

When people are looking for sugar-free options, they often adopt other questionable habits. For example, choosing a no-calorie diet soda over a regular soda may seem like a healthy choice, but studies suggest that overindulgence in the diet beverage can lead to weight gain. Aspartame, sucralose and saccharin are common sugar substitutes, but multiple studies have linked each to weight gain, not weight loss.

7. Limiting Sugar Will Help You Lose Weight

While limiting added sugars is one way to lose some extra pounds, it is better to reflect on your entire diet. Limiting sugar, but increasing calories elsewhere, is not likely to result in weight loss. Learn about nutrition and then make adjustments. Added sugar should be limited, but it is not necessary to cut sugar out of your diet entirely.


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