Sugar is everywhere and in almost everything you eat. From rice, noodles to soft drinks, kuih, fruit juices, etc.
But do you know what it’s doing to your body?
Among the simple sugars are glucose, fructose and galactose. These are also known is monosaccharides. Your body breaks down carbohydrates to form these.
Glucose is the most common. It exists on its own, and it is also the main building block of other sugars. It is also your body’s primary source of energy. When measuring blood sugar, you’re actually measuring the level of glucose in your blood.
Fructose is the sugar most commonly found in — fruit. Different types of fruits or syrup contains varying combination of glucose and fructose.
Galactose on the hand is mostly found only in milk. It is derived from lactose, which breaks down in your body into glucose and galactose.
Once your body has had its fill of fuel, the remaining excess sugars are converted to glycogen and fatty acids in your liver. These fatty acids (fats) are then returned to your bloodstream and taken throughout your body to be stored.
Consumption of carbohydrates and sugar spikes your blood sugar which in turn raises insulin levels. Insulin temporarily shuts down your body’s fat burning process. This is so that the ingested sugar can be immediately used for energy.
At the same time, insulin also signals your fat cells to pick up fat from the bloodstream and store it.
Sugar alters the biochemical pathways in your brain and tampers with your dopamine receptors. Your body craves for sweet stuff to get its next dopamine spike. However you’ll find that an increasing dose is needed to achieve the same effect. Your body reacts similarly to alcohol and other addictive substances.
After consuming sugar, your immune system’s ability to kill germs is reduced by up to 40%. And this effect can last up to 5 hours after consumption.
Sugar competes with Vitamin C for space in your white blood cells because of their similarity in chemical structure. Your white blood cells need vitamin C to fight off bacteria and viruses. Sugar also promotes an inflammatory response in your body. And chronic inflammation has been found to be the trigger for many diseases.
Besides a variety of health effects, sugar also affects your skin. Through a process known as glycation, sugar molecules bind to your collagen fibres. This causes them to lose their natural elasticity and break down. Which in turn causes you to look older with wrinkles and fine lines.
If you look at nature, plants and fruits which you’ll find sugars in usually comes bundled with various other nutrients, minerals and fibre. Fibre not only fills you up and slows digestion, it also slows down your body’s absorption of sugars.
However our food has becomed increasingly processed and refined (like white rice, white bread, fruit juices and added sugars, etc). Thus your body can very easily get overwhelmed with the sheer quantity and frequency of sugar consumption.
Not necessarily. First, GI (glycemic index) compares the potential of foods containing the same amount of carbohydrate to raise blood glucose. What it doesn’t take into account is how much of the particular food you have to ingest to get the amount of carbohydrates. For example, it’s easy to consume 50g of carbs from white rice, however the same can’t be said for carrots!
So instead, glycemic load (which takes into account how much carbs is in the food) might give you a more accurate picture.
Secondly, glycemic index and load only measures the effect on your blood sugar (glucose). But how about the other types of sugar, especially fructose? All sugars weren’t created equal as they are processed and metabolised very differently in your body.
Let’s just say fructose is a toxin to your liver, just like alcohol.
Virtually every cell in your body can break down glucose for energy. But one of the only ones that can handle fructose are your liver cells. What the liver does with fructose, especially when there is too much in your diet, has potentially dangerous consequences for the liver, the arteries, and the heart.
Your liver metabolises fructose into fat to be stored (in your liver and elsewhere in your body). In the process free radicals are formed which could result in liver inflammation.
Having a diet high in fructose is correlated to a number of chronic diseases. This includes, slower metabolism, higher cholesterol, heart disease, fatty-liver disease or cirrhosis, hypertension, obesity, hepatic insulin resistance and even gout due to the overproduction of uric acid in your body.
GSH is involved in the modulation of glucose homeostasis in your body.
At the same time, GSH plays a central role in the functioning of your immune cells.
According to Dr Gustavo Bounous (leading expert on GSH), “The limiting factor in the proper activity of our lymphocytes is the availability of GSH.” The healthy growth and activity of your immune cells depends on the availability of GSH. Put simply, GSH is the “food” for your immune system!
Another way that GSH helps is to fight and overcome free radicals in your body. The consumption of sugar produces free radicals and oxidative stress which might lead to inflammation and disease if not contained. GSH is the master antioxidant of your body. Not only does it overcome free radicals, it also recycles other antioxidants (like vitamin C, E), returning them to active duty.
“There are many myths and mysteries about raising glutathione…
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World’s best selling author on Glutathione
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