It seems to be that Christmas and over-indulgence in sugar and alcohol go hand in hand. During holidays it is actually a great time to exercise and get fit, but, gee – we have allot of excuses why not too! Whilst away from work – it is a perfect time to “self-care” – to take charge over our health. Christmas’s silly season is explainable for allot of reasons – in addition – nutrition. Specifically sugars – because sugar makes people ratty, moody and exhausted!
Foods high in sugar refined and unrefined are linked directly to Type 2 Diabetes, Obesity, Heart disease and now Alzheimer’s, but wait – mood disorders as well. The research evidence shows that sugar impacts on blood glucose and insulin levels, which leads to an increase of free radicals as well as pro inflammatory cytokines. These inflammatory molecules can damage tissue and interfere with the immune system at consequently has a negative impact on the brain functioning.
The human brain is the most energy-hungry organ in our body, and needs a constant, steady supply of fuel, which is best when sourced from nutrient high foods (such as vegetables and protein). The brain is highly sensitive to variations in blood sugar levels. Sugar fluctuations cause fatigue, poor concentration and anxiety, moods, temper and agitation. Just ask any teacher whose students have a regular diet of coco pops or any other crap cereal for breakfast and they will tell you about managing aggression and mood. Someone who is already stressed or may have a mental health issue, presenting symptoms can be magnified. There is a great book available called “Sweet Poison” – have you seen it?
A few tips
- Start TODAY
- Get rid of the sweet poison from your cupboards (cakes, cereals, bread, buns, cookies etc) !
- Get rid of hidden sugar foods (cereals, processed carbs, quick cook rice and pastas etc)
- Reduce the use of sauces – they are full of sugars
- Get rid of the fast fix foods and drinks
- Read the labels before purchasing
- Rethink what you snack on replace chips and sweets with carrots and celery
- EDUCATE yourself
- Quick Quiz: (True of False)
- 600 ml of COKE has 20 teaspoons of sugar
- 600 ml of energy drink has approx 17 teaspoons of sugar
- 600 ml of fruit juice has approx 15 teaspoons of sugar
- 600 ml of flavoured milk has an average of 18 teaspoons of sugar
- Carrots and celery are negative calorie foods
- Reducing sweets can cause headaches (a form of withdrawal)
- All the above are TRUE
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