Did you know that scientists use complicated computations to create what is called the biggest crave? They work with food manufacturers to addict consumers to their foods, namely ones with salt, sugar, and oil. Food engineers alter variables such as taste, color, smell, and packaging until they find just the right combination that keeps you coming back for more.
And guess what? It is working beautifully! The high levels of sugar in processed food is very addictive, and most people will go through a period of withdrawal when not consuming it.
Empty calories from refined sugars (such as table sugar, honey, molasses, brown sugar, and high-fructose corn syrup) weaken our immune systems. Sugar contributes to dental cavities, diabetes, and loss of bone mass. It can have a damaging effect on the gastrointestinal tract and is also partially to blame for today’s high cancer and heart attack rates (Fuhrman 33). When we eat refined sugar, it ferments in our systems, causing the formation of acetic acid, carbonic acid, and alcohol. It can gradually destroy the texture of the kidneys, overwork the pancreas, and affect the nerves, which are related to the brain. Refined sugar can increase and intensify pain in women during menstruation and can aggravate nervousness.
Soda is the number one source of refined sugar, and Americans drink twice as much today as they did 25 years ago (Ludington & Diehl 22). A 12-oz can contains 10 to 12 teaspoons of sugar! This is a serious problem, and the National Institute of Health in Washington, D.C. recommends people drink water instead of sugary soft drinks. Take a look at the chart below to see the sugar content in some popular beverages.
But the good news is that we don't have to turn to processed junk foods and beverages to satisfy our sweet tooth. Nature has provided a source of natural sugar that also supplies our bodies with healthy nutrients and antioxidants: fruit (Walker 49). When you want something sweet, reach for a succulent piece of fruit or some dried fruit like dates, raisins, or figs. Nature’s sweets will satisfy your sweet tooth and will provide fiber, vitamins, and minerals -- unlike candy and soda.
Natural Weight Control by Dr. Norman W. Walker, D.Sc., Ph.D
Take Charge of your Health by Aileen Ludington, MD and Hans Diehl, DrHSc
Eat To Live by Joel Fuhrman, MD
Salt, Sugar, Fat by Michael Moss