Nancy Appleton, Ph.D. compiled this very lengthy list of Ways Sugar Can Ruin Your Health as part f her research for her book Lick the Sugar Habit. I encourage you to read through the list and check off any symptoms you may have.
Then do a little experiment. Take a sugar break, for even a few days, and see what happens. You may see immediate relief from some of your symptoms, and you may also experience some withdrawal symptoms such as shakiness, headache or fatigue. If this happens for you, know that abstaining from refined sugar will benefit your health going forward. It's worth it. You're worth it.
Here's what Nancy says:
In addition to throwing off the body's homeostasis, excess sugar may result in a number of other significant consequences. The following is a listing of some of sugar's metabolic consequences from a variety of medical journals and other scientific publications.
1. Sugar can suppress the immune system.
2. Sugar can upset the body's mineral balance.
3. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, concentration difficulties, and crankiness in children.
4. Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children.
5. Sugar can adversely affect children's school grades.
6. Sugar can produce a significant rise in triglycerides.
7. Sugar contributes to a weakened defense against bacterial infection.
8. Sugar can cause kidney damage.
9. Sugar can reduce helpful high density cholesterol (HDLs).
10. Sugar can promote an elevation of harmful cholesterol (LDLs).
11. Sugar may lead to chromium deficiency.
12. Sugar can cause copper deficiency.
13. Sugar interferes with absorption of calcium and magnesium.
14. Sugar may lead to cancer of the breast, ovaries, prostate, and rectum.
15. Sugar can cause colon cancer, with an increased risk in women.
16. Sugar can be a risk factor in gall bladder cancer.
17. Sugar can increase fasting levels of blood glucose.
18. Sugar can weaken eyesight.
19. Sugar raises the level of a neurotransmitter called serotonin, which can narrow blood vessels.
20. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.
21. Sugar can produce an acidic stomach.
22. Sugar can raise adrenaline levels in children.
23. Sugar can increase the risk of coronary heart disease.
24. Sugar can speed the aging process, causing wrinkles and grey hair.
25. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.
26. Sugar can promote tooth decay.
27. Sugar can contribute to weight gain and obesity.
28. High intake of sugar increases the risk of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.
29. Sugar can cause a raw, inflamed intestinal tract in persons with gastric or duodenal ulcers.
30. Sugar can cause arthritis.
31. Sugar can cause asthma.
32. Sugar can cause candidiasis (yeast infection).
33. Sugar can lead to the formation of gallstones.
34. Sugar can lead to the formation of kidney stones.
35. Sugar can cause ischemic heart disease.
36. Sugar can cause appendicitis.
37. Sugar can exacerbate the symptoms of multiple sclerosis.
38. Sugar can indirectly cause hemorrhoids.
39. Sugar can cause varicose veins.
40. Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses in oral contraception users.
41. Sugar can lead to periodontal disease.
42. Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.
43. Sugar contributes to saliva acidity.
44. Sugar can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.
45. Sugar leads to decreased glucose tolerance.
46. Sugar can decrease growth hormone.
47. Sugar can increase total cholesterol.
48. Sugar can increase systolic blood pressure.
49. Sugar can change the structure of protein causing interference with protein absorption.
50. Sugar causes food allergies.
51. Sugar can contribute to diabetes.
52. Sugar can cause toxemia during pregnancy.
53. Sugar can contribute to eczema in children.
54. Sugar can cause cardiovascular disease.
55. Sugar can impair the structure of DNA.
56. Sugar can cause cataracts.
57. Sugar can cause emphysema.
58. Sugar can cause atherosclerosis.
59. Sugar can cause free radical formation in the bloodstream.
60. Sugar lowers the enzymes' ability to function.
61. Sugar can cause loss of tissue elasticity and function.
62. Sugar can cause liver cells to divide, increasing the size of the liver.
63. Sugar can increase the amount of fat in the liver.
64. Sugar can increase kidney size and produce pathological changes in the kidney.
65. Sugar can overstress the pancreas, causing damage.
66. Sugar can increase the body's fluid retention.
67. Sugar can cause constipation.
68. Sugar can cause myopia (nearsightedness).
69. Sugar can compromise the lining of the capillaries.
70. Sugar can cause hypertension.
71. Sugar can cause headaches, including migraines.
72. Sugar can cause an increase in delta, alpha and theta brain waves, which can alter the mind's ability to think clearly.
73. Sugar can cause depression.
74. Sugar can increase insulin responses in those consuming high-sugar diets.
75. Sugar increases bacterial fermentation in the colon.
76. Sugar can cause hormonal imbalance.
77. Sugar can increase blood platelet adhesiveness which increases risk of blood clots.
78. Sugar increases the risk of Alzheimer Disease.
How many symptoms do you have that appear on this list? What would it be like for you if those achy knees were "old age" but were the outcome of too much sugar?
Place a list of your symptoms in the comments section below. Let' see if the lists that show up here serve as motivators for all of us to kick the sugar habit.