I have a friend who is almost 60 years old. Everyone who has ever met him is shocked to find out his age. He looks barely a year over 40. His skin is bright. His energy is terrific and his endurance is that of a younger man. I had to ask him what his secret was to maintaining his youthful appearance and energy. His answer was simple and surprising- “Sugar is the enemy.”
Believe it or not but my friend is correct. Sugar is the enemy to your health. Have you ever noticed that in times of stress, depression and anxiety, people often look for a sweet treat or a favorite sugar filled comfort food? This may seem inconsequential but over the long-term, this automatic reflex for sugary foods can be very detrimental to your body, especially to your brain and body functions. Ironically, instead of easing your anxiety, excessive sugar can actually increase those feelings.
Excessive sugar consumption has been shown to suppress the body's immune response, which of course is like opening the doors to disease. Too much sugar daily can cause hypoglycemia or low blood sugar. Large fluctuations in blood sugar can cause depression, anxiety, mood swings, fatigue and aggressive behavior.
Symptoms of anxiety and depression are very similar to symptoms of hypoglycemia and include: rapid pulse, crying spells, heart palpitations, weakness, cold sweats, irritability, fatigue, nightmares, twitching and poor concentrations.
The best way to restore blood sugar levels is to change your diet to more fiber and protein rich foods and to cut back on your consumption of simple sugars. A protein snack between meals can help to keep your blood sugar levels stable all day.
Eliminating or limiting sugar from your diet will not be an easy task. I have a friend who is a sugar and chocolate fanatic. She eats sugar and chocolate all day. Just going without either for an entire day is almost impossible for her. The only way anyone will be able to break this terrible addiction is to start eating low-glycemic foods, adding amino acid supplementation and nutritional supplements. These changes can help to balance your blood sugar. The following supplements are helpful:
-Calcium and magnesium
-Amino acid supplementation
Many people who are addicted to sugar can benefit greatly from taking a chromium picolinate supplement. In many instances it has been found that people addicted to sugar are deficient in chromium. Chromium can also help to increase energy levels.
Vitamin B helps the body to handle stress and is especially helpful to the adrenal glands, which are most often adversely affected by caffeine, sugar, stress and lack of sleep.
Using natural whole-food sweeteners are better for the body than regular refined sugar.
-Honey is a whole food that is twice as sweet as sugar but also contains vitamins and enzymes. Do not use honey if you are diabetic or have low blood sugar or candida.
-Rice syrup is 40% as sweet as regular sugar and is made from rice and sugar.
-Sucarat is a natural sugar made from sugar cane juice.
-Stevia is a natural sweetener that is safe for people with blood sugar imbalances, candida and diabetes. It comes as a liquid extract or as a white powder.
Artificial sweeteners should be avoided for several reasons. First, they confuse the body and create sugar imbalances. Second, they are very toxic and can cause problems such as brain swelling, heart muscle inflammation, and blindness. Third, artificial sugars create a cycle of dependency that leads to disease.
Finally, excess sugar actually ages and weakens the body. When your immune system is weakened, your body is unable to fight off pathogens that can start the disease process. Most diseases are associated with old age but in reality many are an accumulation of years of abuse, disregard or indifference to what we eat and how we have taken care of our bodies. Simply limiting sugar can have a dramatic effect on your overall health. The best way to maintain your youthful appearance, energy and stamina is to maintain a balanced blood sugar level. The human body systems are all dependant on each other for optimal health and functioning. Should one system become weak each system will eventually follow. Do not allow what you eat to slow you down. Choose good food options and give your body the best you can to help keep you looking and feeling good for years to come.