Being healthy doesn’t just mean you and your family are free from disease. Optimal health means that you are functioning your best throughout the day. You should wake refreshed and renewed each day, ready and able to handle all the tasks that must be done. Your children should be able to play hard, concentrate easily, have good stamina, a pleasant demeanor, and be able to sleep well.
Nationally, we have very poor eating habits. The average American consumes 120 pounds of sugar per year! This poor approach to eating weakens our systems and undermines the health of our growing children.
Eating sugar can eventually lead to many disorders and diseases. When refined sugar is consumed, the pancreas must produce insulin to metabolize it and normalized the blood sugar levels. Eating sugar over a long period of time can over stimulate the pancreas and essentially wear it out so that it no longer produces insulin. This process results in diabetes or hyperglycemia (high blood sugar).
Most people are familiar with the “sugar buzz” which occurs when sugar is eaten and blood sugar levels rise. Sugar causes hyperactivity in children and can lead to anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness.
A dip in blood sugar normally occurs after eating sugar, which causes fatigue, dizziness, confusion, headaches, and/or restlessness. Eating foods which contain simple carbohydrates, such as sugar, make you feel tired and lessen your ability to think because your body’s tissues can not receive enough oxygen. Sugar can become addictive, as more sugar is consumed in order to maintain the “buzz”.
Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) is a condition which can develop from ingestion of sugar; the pancreas over secretes insulin in order to remove the excess sugar from the blood. This will ultimately lead to a collapse of the adrenal glands, the organs needed to combat stress). Sugar can also raise levels of adrenaline (an adrenal hormone) in children.
Your immune system becomes weakened five hours after consuming sugar! This makes you and your children more susceptible to infection and to the development of allergies and asthma.
Sugar can decrease growth hormone and stunt your child’s growth. It can contribute to eczema in children. It can also cause toxemia during pregnancy.
Sugar can cause heart disease. Cholesterol levels, triglycerides, and blood pressure increase as a result of eating sugar. High density lipoproteins (HDLs) the “good” components of cholesterol decrease.
A lowered blood sugar level causes a deficiency of zinc, chromium, manganese, and B-complex vitamins; they are used up as our body struggles to metabolize the excess sugar. Sugar can also lead to copper deficiency, interfere with the absorption of magnesium and protein, and upset the balance of minerals in the body.
Sugar can also cause: kidney damage, cancer of the breast, ovaries, intestines, prostate, and rectum, weak eyesight, aging, alcoholism, tooth decay, obesity, acidity in the stomach, arthritis, Candida albicans (a yeast infection), gall stones, appendicitis, multiple sclerosis, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, osteoporosis, and migraines.
By eliminating sugar from your diet you can prevent many degenerative disease processes from occurring in you and your children’s bodies!
Our naturally sweet tooth can be satisfied with whole, ripe, organic fruits. You can have your cake and occasionally eat it too! Treats can be made with unrefined sweetners. Many natural sugars retain vitamins, minerals, and other components essential for their digestion that are stripped from common white sugar during processing.
People who function their best are usually those who eat the right foods. They eat a lot of unprocessed whole foods such as grains, vegetables, legumes (dried peas and beans) and fruit, while avoiding fats, processed foods, and refined sugar. Check the labels and you will be surprised to find how many products you buy and regularly consume contain sugar.