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Does Sugar Cause Inflammation in the Body?

sugar cubes in glassA high sugar diet can have harmful effects on our health, such as increasing the risk of chronic diseases, weight gain, and tooth decay. It can also result in chronic inflammation.

There are many types of sugar and some may contribute more or less inflammation to the body so be smart about what you eat.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the different kinds of sugar and their sources:

  • Fructose is fruit sugar and is found in fruit
  • Maltose is malt sugar and is found in germinating grains. You will find it in malted milkshakes and malted candy.
  • Lactose is milk sugar and is found in milk
  • Dextrose is made synthetically from starch and is called “corn sugar.”
  • Sucrose is refined sugar or table sugar made from sugar cane and sugar beet (and almost all sugar beets are genetically modified which makes the sugar even more dangerous).
  • Last is glucose. It’s a sugar found in fruits and vegetables and is usually present with other sugars. It is the key material found in the metabolism of all plants and animals. Most of what we eat gets converted to glucose in our bloodstream. Because glucose is always present in our bloodstream it is often referred to as blood sugar.

Some signs of inflammation:

  • Depression, anxiety or other mood disorders
  • Body pain
  • Fatigue/Insomnia
  • Constipation, diarrhea, weight gain, reflux
  • Chronic or frequent infections

Those with chronic inflammation may also have a higher risk for diabetes, depression and even dementia.

RISKS for Kids with too much sugar:

#1: Suppresses Your Child’s Immune System

#2: Sugar Causes Hyperactivity in Kids and Lowers Concentration Levels

#3: Sugar Weakens Eyesight

#4: Sugar Can Cause Stomach Aches, Indigestion, and Acidic Digestive Tract

#5: Sugar is Linked to Increased Asthma in Kids and Teens

#7: Sugar Can be Related to Food Allergies in Children

#8: Sugar Can Contribute to Eczema in Children

How to Become Sugar Savvy

In addition to candies, cookies and sweet treats, sugar tends to lurk in unexpected places. Even seemingly healthy foods such as fruit juice, yogurt, granola and trail mix, can contain 25 grams (or more!) of sugar per serving. Health experts suggest limiting kids’ daily intake of sugar to 25 grams or less.

How can you ensure your child consumes a low-sugar diet? Pay attention to nutrition labels Choosing a cereal? Select the box with the fewest grams of added sugar. Syrup, go for 0 sugar added. Even ketchup has sugar and now there are options for 0 sugar added! Looking for a mid-afternoon snack? Choose fruits and vegetables over packaged products.

If you present healthy options to your children when they are young, they’ll be more likely to eat healthy foods as they grow older. A few low-sugar snack options kids love:

  • Apple slices with peanut butter
  • Mandarin oranges
  • Cheese and whole grain crackers
  • Popcorn
  • Hummus and whole grain pita chips
mom helping kids pack lunch

Natural ways to reduce inflammation on the body:

  1. Getting enough sleep
  2. Quit smoking
  3. Follow anti-inflammatory diet
  4. Maintain a healthy weight
  5. Workout!

Parents, be an example in everything you eat, both at home and when dining out.

As you rid your diets of sugar, you will see how everyone’s thinking and ability to learn will increase. You will also see a difference in everyone’s moods, emotions, energy, and outlook on life.

Now, go grab a healthy, low-sugar snack!!!


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