one green planet
one green planet

High amounts of sodium have been linked to blood pressure, diabetes, and even heart disease, but there’s a much more evil ingredient in our food that’s just as easy to ignore. Possibly because it’s addicting, seems harmless, and is everywhere we look: sugar. It’s the food some people fear and others don’t want to discuss. But we can’t look away – more and more evidence shows us that this toxic, addictive substance is now the leading cause of obesity, possibly contributes to cancer, and even controls/causes depression and food addictions.

Help, It’s Everywhere!

Processed sugar is found everywhere, even in the least expected places. Salad dressings, bread, chips, it’s added to dried fruit or canned soups and fruits, and even found in healthy organic items like non-dairy milk and vegan cereals, cereal bars, and non-dairy ice cream. Listed as evaporated cane juice, cane syrup, brown rice syrup, agave nectar, honey, coconut sugar, palm sugar, cane sugar, maple syrup, barley malt, dextrose, and more, it’s one of the hardest ingredients to escape if you don’t read labels.

Even doctors have called for stricter dietary guidelines to be made surrounding added and refined sugars, with government labeling change also taking effect in the next few years. Considering the average American contains 75 pounds of sugar in just one year, it’s pretty obvious that this ingredient is more than just a friendly inclusion in a variety of product ingredient lists.

Processed Fructose: The Worst Kind of Sugar

Fructose is a type of sugar that’s found in many foods, including fruit. While whole fruits aren’t unhealthy when eaten a few times a day, added sources of fructose from processed foods are. They’re not used by the body like glucose is, and converted to excess fat via the liver through storage. Fructose malabsorption can also lead to digestive issues like IBS, and now even contributes to over 350,000 deaths a year from high blood pressure (which is normally though to only occur through excess sodium).

How To Quit Sugar

Kick the habit by going cold-turkey. The easiest way to do this isn’t to buy sugar-free processed foods but to merely save your budget, waistline, and heart by switching to a whole foods, plant-based diet. Talk about a food makeover! You’ll never feel so great and free from sugar addictions as you will on this type of eating approach. You stay full, focused, and it’s one of the most versatile, delicious ways to eat.  It will teach your body to crave less of the sweet stuff, more of the good stuff, and help you see that sugary sweets really don’t taste that great once you eliminate them. Headaches, fatigue, stomach aches, and even skin issues all seem to disappear once you kick the sugar habit for good.

After all, a few bites of dessert and sweets everyday doesn’t seem like a big deal, but day after day, clearly our bodies are telling us otherwise. So you tell us, if sugar told the truth, what would your body say?

Image Source: Nomadic Lass/Flickr