This month, we are taking a deep dive into the sweet world of sugar. The last two weeks, I have shared my own personal story regarding my struggles with sugar addiction. My friend Tess also shared hers. Since then, many of you have reached out to me to share similar journeys you have been on.
Clearly, it is a topic that resonates with many of us.
So many of us want to eat healthier, but feel lost about how to put it into practice. It can be so confusing, can’t it? With so many different diet plans out there…So many different studies labeling a particular food as “bad” one day, only to change their mind a few years later and place that same exact food on the “good” list!
How do we know what is best?
The truth is, I don’t believe that there is a “one-size” fits all diet out there that is perfect for everyone. Particularly when it comes to cancer. For example, most doctors will promote a plant-based diet to their patients. Yet, there is a very small percentage of doctors who advise their patients to stay away from these foods in order to protect a weakened immune system. Similarly, most of the literature would advise against patients eating foods that are high in sugar and fats. However, I once had very direct conversation with an oncologist who told me that if their patient won’t eat and is losing weight, they would be willing to let them eat just about anything they wanted!
That is why we always encourage our readers to check with their physician before making any major dietary changes. You want to make sure that your nutritional choices are going to give your body the best possible nutrients it needs for this fight.
In most cases, the benefits to reducing your intake of added sugars far outweigh the risks involved. Considering the increased risk of weight gain, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, depression, and fatigue brought about by sugar, this is clear to see.
However, I do want to highlight that a difference does exist between natural sugars and added sugars.
Some foods, like fruit and vegetables, have some naturally-occurring sugars in them. This is what gives them their sweet taste. God put these sugars there, not humans. We didn’t refine them or process them.
These sugars are OKAY!!
They are balanced by enzymes and fiber that aid in digestion, and nutrients that are good for your body.
So, go ahead and eat these to your heart’s content.
On the other hand, added sugars added to foods to provide flavor. By humans. Who have refined and processed them.
These foods tend to be higher in calories and ingredients than those with naturally occurring sugars. Consider a glass of orange juice – which is heavily processed to stay shelf-stable, lacking in fiber, and containing a host of added ingredients – and compare it to an orange. Which one do you think is the better option?