Almost all of us have at some time or another struggled with our weight. It could simply be the desire to fit back into a favourite pair of jeans or the looming realisation that our metabolism isn’t what it used to be. For many of us these struggles last years!
We’ve tried the crash diet, the low-carb diet, the water diet, the fruit diet….but nothing has had a lasting impact. Experts have suggested that its time to stop believing in myths about food and listen to the signals your body sends you.
At QNET, where we promote the philosophy of Absolute Living, we couldn’t agree more.
Let’s get down to the basics. Our bodies get energy from two main sources:
- Carbohydrates, which includes sugar
Yes, Fat! It’s not a bad word, despite the bad rep it has unfairly received. We have been told for years that the only way to lose weight is to eat low-fat foods. But what is now becoming obvious, backed by substantial research, is that instead of being worried about fat, we should have been paying attention to the amount of sugar we consume.
Sugar has 16 calories per teaspoon. That doesn’t seem like much, but it can pack on hundreds of calories without offering any nutritional value. Extra calories raise your risk of obesity, which in turn sets you up for diabetes. A 2013 study found that for every 150 calories of added sugar consumed in a population—the equivalent of one can of soft drink or cola—diabetes prevalence in the population went up 1.1%.
And it’s not like you need to be gulping down spoons full of sugar for it to affect you. Hidden sugars are lurking everywhere. In today’s modern world, almost all your packaged food contains some amount of sugar.
If you give up sugar you’ll soon notice a new feeling of satiety, and consequently, you’ll feel satisfied despite eating less food. Many people who try this say they no longer want to eat a large meal and almost never have any midnight cravings.
Some of the other interesting changes you will experience are as follows.
1- Fewer visits to the Dentist
When you were little, did your mother warn you about eating too many sweets? Turns out she was right. There is a clear connection between sweet treats and dental decay and cavities. Sugar provides a quick food source for bacteria so they can reproduce quickly, causing plaque buildup and that awful morning breath. Once you give up sugar, not only are you saving your teeth from long-term decay, you will also find yourself waking up with sweeter breath!
2- Shed those Kilos
Added sugars drive up the calorie content of foods. Think of all those soft drinks you like, the cakes and pastries you love, or even the pasta sauce in your spaghetti. If you eliminate sugar-laden foods, you eliminate a lot of kilojoules/Calories from fat and refined starches too. That’s because we don’t eat sugar on its own! We consume it with fat and refined starches (you can’t bake a decent cake without flour, fat and sugar).
Reduce your intake of calories from added sugar even more by reading food labels. This will help you identify foods that contain added sugars but aren’t sweet, obvious sources. Once you start being conscious of how much sugar you are putting into your body and control it, watch those stubborn additional kilos melt away.
3- Sleep like a baby
A sugar high causes a crash later on, leaving you feeling tired and sluggish during the day. Sugar also triggers the release of cortisol, which can interfere with sleep cycles. Give up added sugar and you’ll be more awake during the day and get a better night’s sleep.
4- Have more energy
Studies show that added dietary sugars can decrease the activity of orexin cells. These cells are basically the Energizer Bunnies of our bodies, and induce wakefulness, stoke the metabolism, and keep our system moving. When orexin cells are turned off or absent, we’re sleepy and sluggish, which explains why you want to nap after a carb- and sugar-laden lunch.
5- Clearer skin
Sugar is a known inflammatory that can trigger breakouts. Save the money you spend on expensive acne face wash, zit cream and concealer and try cutting out sugar instead.
Love your sweet treats and having a hard time giving it up despite knowing the dangers? Have you tried a natural sweetener like QNet’s Nutriplus Natose Stevia liquid? 100% natural alternative to sugar, with all its sweetness and none of the harmful side effects.