Sugar: the sweet truth –

Have you ever wondered why man is so attracted to sweet taste? Let’s go back in time a bit! For early man, the natural attraction to sweet flavors was functional, because in nature almost anything sweet is not poisonous. Vegetables produce carbohydrates (sugars) by capturing solar energy and fixing it in a compound of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.

The vegetable kingdom is mainly composed of carbohydrates which have always been an excellent food for man, since they are the first source of energy that the body uses.

Our body can use carbohydrates instantly, if it needs energy, or it can convert them into glycogen, to store them when needed. Besides the nutritional factor, however, there is another factor that drives us to crave sugars, and it is a psycho-emotional motivation, linked to the precise moment of our birth. When we are born, the first “act of love” we receive is the nourishment given to us, wrapped in the embrace of the mother, while we feed on her milk.

In this way, nourishment and maternal affection are inextricably linked for the newborn. Both become a “sweet hug”: the “mother’s” milk contains a large part of lactose (sugar), as well as small amounts of other oligosaccharides, while the embrace is a gesture ” affective” powerful. This is why, symbolically, “sweet food” satisfies, in addition to the nutritional needs of the body, also the needs for emotional food.

Identifying sweet foods with the “loving hug” causes an experience of “emotional hunger” every time we crave affection. The baby instinctively searches for sweet foods and it is only at the time of weaning that he begins to approach other flavors. Unfortunately, for almost all children, the sweet taste remains the only one sought, even at an age when other foods, rich in nutrients essential to their psychophysical growth, should be introduced. Indeed, most of the food proposals intended for children are made up of super sweet foods: snacks, biscuits, cakes, jams, soft drinks and industrial juices. But it doesn’t stop there, as sweets are typically used to reward or stimulate the child to achieve a result, turning sweet foods into an “emotional comfort” substance.

The problem is that we are not talking about the sugars naturally contained in fruits and vegetables, legumes or whole grains, but about added and synthetic sugars which have a heavy impact on baby’s health.

This excess of sugars in the blood of the little ones will predispose them to suffer in adulthood from diseases related, not only to metabolic/hormonal imbalances, but also to all the ailments whose basis is, for example, intestinal dysbiosis. (sugar being the favorite food of the pathogens of our Microbiota) or to alterations in the psycho-emotional sphere such as anxiety and depression.

The real problem is that sugar has become the most widespread “drug” in the world in less than fifty years! After all, the testimonies of independent doctors and scientists are multiplying and clearly explain how all foods and industrial products, even those considered healthy, contain too much sugar. Sugar is everywhere! And its excess is the cause of overweight, obesity, diabetes and almost all the chronic degenerative diseases that have been rampant in recent years.

Nutrigenomics warns us against this “sneaky enemy” disguised as a “faithful and cuddly friend”. We now know that what we eat determines substantial changes in our organism, even at the level of our genes. In particular, abnormal sugar consumption is considered to be one of the main causes of inflammation. I am talking about a “silent” bodily inflammation, almost always asymptomatic in the early stages. Silent inflammation is chronic, low-grade inflammation that enters the bloodstream and affects different areas of our body, including the brain! An inflamed ground is always fertile ground for any type of pathology and decompensation. Behind this excess of sugar hides the unscrupulous marketing of our society of consumption and abuse.

Sugar is addictive! We don’t need scientific proof! The human body is programmed to obtain energy from carbohydrates and, although it is also able to obtain it from proteins and fats, it obtains it much more easily and with less waste production. , precisely from carbohydrates. Man should only eat sugars that come directly from the plant world, to break them down into energy available for body and mind.

Plant foods also provide the body with all the micronutrients it needs, as well as fiber that contributes to the proper functioning of the digestive system. Unfortunately, our diet, over the last half century, has changed a lot: man has learned to extract the sweetness from vegetables and add it to canned foods, giving life to foods super concentrated in sugars that spill in the blood, causing a rapid rise in blood sugar.

The problem is that when these sugars are not used, because the body does not need them, they accumulate and turn into fats, also modifying the lipid profile, in addition to that of glucose. Blood sugar balance is probably the most important factor in determining energy levels and weight control.

Appetite itself largely depends on the level of blood sugar (glycaemia). When blood sugar drops, we feel the urge to hunger and are driven to eat. Glucose, obtained from the digestion of the carbohydrates we consume, will flow into the bloodstream and, following the command of insulin, will enter the cells as fuel to produce energy. If the glucose is excessive, the body converts the excess into glycogen which is stored mainly in the liver, muscle or fat which is our long-lasting energy reserve.

The problem is that this mechanism of absorbing and using sugars for energy purposes, in recent years, has been overlooked due to increasingly processed diets high in artificial sugars and hydrogenated fats. Many people suffer from impaired glycemic regulation with dangerous blood sugar spikes and there are increasing diagnoses of diabetes, a disease that represents an extreme form of glycemic imbalance.

Diabetes is a disease that does not occur at all times in our body, but is the effect of a whole series of chronic imbalances such as intestinal dysbiosis, toxemia, acidosis, malabsorption, overweight, cardiocirculatory decompensation and hepatic dysfunction.

More specifically, type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease characterized by abnormalities in the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. The incidence of type 2 diabetes continues to grow, reaching “epidemic” proportions all over the world. The reasons for this increase are to be found in the profound changes in people’s way of life, in the first place the enormous quantity of sugar and toxic substances introduced into our diet. The increase incidence curves of this pathology are aligned with the curves of the graphs that tell the increase in the consumption of industrial foods.

This type of diabetes arises from a state of insulin resistance in muscle and adipose tissue and concomitant impaired insulin secretion. These factors cause an increase in blood sugar, which in the long term leads to the development of chronic complications, both microvascular (retinopathy, neuropathy, nephropathy) and macrovascular (hypertension, ischemic heart disease, peripheral vascular disease). But at the base of such a serious decompensation, there are always profound gastrointestinal alterations, even asymptomatic: dysbiosis, malabsorption, retention of toxins in the intestine and of course impaired liver function (hepatic steatosis and hepatomegaly ). Then there is the whole psycho-emotional component that can contribute to the appearance of this serious pathology. Little by little, day after day, almost without realizing it, the emotional imbalance weighs down our organs, systems and systems.

For example, anger discharges to the liver, and the body, under constant stress, begins to produce large amounts of catecholamines (adrenaline and dopamine) which inhibit the release of insulin from the beta cells of the pancreas. This mechanism, in genetically predisposed individuals, may contribute to diabetes. From a psychosomatic point of view, diabetes represents the “hunger for affection” denied and not received. The diabetic, through the disease, expresses his need for affective nourishment which has remained unsatisfied. We live in an increasingly anemotional society, could this be why approximately 300 million people in the world suffer from diabetes?

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