This is the third installment in a short series of five posts dedicated to basic healthcare suggestions. The subject is sugar. Hopefully you have heard this subject in the media recently, and for today’s post I am going to borrow from some of the wealth of recent information provided by many well-respected doctors and public advocates. After reading below I would like to encourage you to watch the movie Fed Up and to join me and my staff and many patients in taking the ‘Fed Up Challenge‘ by removing all added sugar from our diets for 10 days. Because it’s not going to be easy we are going to encourage taking the challenge simultaneously with us from June 16th to 25th. Another way to make it easier is to do it with friends or family, so be sure to let the people you care about know what you’re doing! Below you will find a trailer for the movie, links providing a lot of motivation to get rid of sugar, and plenty of support material to ensure a successful 10-day challenge and improved vitality!
Join the Fed Up Challenge!
What if everything we’ve been told about food and exercise for the past 30
years is dead wrong? Fed Up is a powerful movie that will change the way
you think about food.
A growing body of evidence now implicates the excessive intake of refined sugars in the development of many chronic illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Today, sugar is added to nearly all processed foods, even those that are natural, organic, or otherwise apparently healthy. Unfortunately, lab tests show that the brain responds to sugar in a similar way as to cocaine, so reducing sugar intake can be challenging both because of its physiological effects and its abundance in food.
The most common sugar-added foods we consume daily include breads, catsup, soups, salad dressings, crackers, cereals, yogurt, sauces, instant oatmeal, desserts, and soda (both regular and diet). A typical breakfast of processed and overly sweetened grains, breads, and cereals causes your blood sugar to peak at a high level and then plummet, leaving you craving more carbohydrates, thus creating a vicious cycle. Hidden sugars are rampant in our food!
Join us and the filmmakers for the Fed Up Challenge and remove sugar from your diet for 10 days. Following are some resources from The Institute for Functional Medicine to help you get started.
Tips for Success (click here to read more about the bullet points below):
- Drink only healthy beverages. A 20 oz soda contains 17 tsp of sugar…
- Read labels to avoid hidden sugars …
- Make easy, healthy choices by choosing unprocessed foods…
- Understand cravings are normal and the first couple of days will be the hardest…
- Share the experience with friends…
- Expect to feel great after 10 days!
This year, for the first time in history, more people will die from the effects of obesity than from starvation.
In 1990, only about 12% of Americans were overweight; but today, 34.9% of adults and almost 1 in 5 children and adolescents are obese—not just overweight, but diagnostically obese. A more than 3-fold increase in less than 25 years! If that doesn’t qualify as an epidemic, what does?
Practitioners everywhere are wondering how they can help their patients understand the gravity of the problem, and address one of its primary causes—the dramatic change in the food supply from whole foods to processed foods high in refined sugars. Did you know that consuming as little as one sugar-sweetened soda daily has been associated with increased cardiovascular disease mortality?
Sugar is addictive
Sugar is addictive. After drinking a 20 oz. soda that contains 17 teaspoons of sugar there is a fluctuation in blood sugar that not only places a heavy load on the body’s metabolism, but often leads to more sugar cravings. Research shows that an unhealthy breakfast, such as one based on a cereal with 4 or 5 teaspoons of sugar in a typical bowl, isn’t much better than soda. Many people don’t even stop after one bowl, or make healthy choices during the rest of the day.
Why is it so hard to stop eating sugar? Sugar influences the brain by affecting the hormones ghrelin and leptin, which control hunger and satiety. Functional MRIs have shown that the brain responds to sugar in a similar way as to cocaine, creating euphoria from the release of dopamine. To make it even worse, the more sugar you eat, the more blunted the reward center in the brain becomes, requiring even more sugar to feel good. Added sweeteners of any kind, including artificial sweeteners, seem to encourage our taste buds to desire more sweet-tasting foods, thereby disrupting our taste perception.
Why do the Fed Up challenge?
You may be wondering, “What’s really in it for me?” People successfully completing the challenge can expect to have more vitality, greater clarity of mind, reduced chronic aches and pains, improved gut symptoms, and perhaps better sleep. A sense of empowerment from becoming knowledgeable and taking action on a very important issue is also a likely outcome.
Again, please join us at Fenske Holistic Healthcare Center in taking the ‘Fed Up Challenge’ from June 16th to 25th! We’d also love to hear about your experience.