No sugar on Halloween! Who would dare say such horrible words?
Dr. No, as my coworkers like to call me, that’s who! If you have ever come to see either Dr. Dave or myself more than likely you have heard the no sugar speech.
In my opinion, sugar is the ultimate destructor of the world. Ironic that it was the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man that attempted to destroy New York. Luckily the Ghostbusters saved the day but who will be our real world Ghostbuster in this battle against sugar?
Look in the mirror! You are your best defense!
But Dr. Alan, “everything in moderation,” right? Ha, that’s a good one! Have you ever had just one M&M or one cookie? The willpower needed to resist is off the charts for most of us. It is much easier to cave in and eat the sweet treat.
Why is sugar so bad? By itself glucose (sugar) is a necessity of the body to survive as we utilize it for the production of ATP via glycolysis → Kreb’s Cycle → Electron Transport → 38 ATP.
But sometimes we get too much of a good thing and it leads to disease. The biggest one being type 2 diabetes. This is also known as insulin resistant diabetes. You hear the term but do you know what is happening? Let me explain it.
When you eat sugar your body must release insulin in response. Insulin acts as messenger in the blood it says to your cells “little cells, little cells, let sugar come in.” If the cells have room they will say “Sure, we will take some.”
As long as sugar levels stay low the system works in unison. However, as the glucose levels rise due to us either eating a high sugar or high simple carbohydrate (flour containing) food. This relation gets tense. Insulin starts to bully the cells to accept more than they can take.
Eventually, the cells will get the courage to say “not through the channels of my phospholipid-bilayer!” Now the cells have resisted insulin.
Now where will the sugar go?
Some of the sugar stays in your gut for fuel for the unhealthy bacteria in our gut. Most goes into the bloodstream in high concentrations.
Your body responds to the high concentrations by diluting your blood with increased water mostly taking the water out of your cells. The increased water content in your blood leads to things like high blood pressure, weight gain from increased water retention, and increased urination.
The sugar will then pass to the liver where the liver will take some of the glucose molecules and turn them into fat which gets deposited throughout the abdomen for a rainy day in case of starvation.
The remaining glucose will then pass through the kidneys and then out the body through urine. So is all this sugar worth the risk of this awful disease that is diabetes?
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the damage that sugar does to our system if you want to dive in to further conversation feel free.
Now back to Halloween – will I pass out candy? Darn right I will!
Nobody wants to be That house! Happy Halloween!
Dr. Alan Broering D.C., CCSP®