Americans love sugar. According to the experts the average American eats 150 grams of sugar a day. One-hundred and fifty grams is about one-third of a pound. One third of a pound of sugar a day! Wow! We must all really want to be sweet.
Are you thinking that you don’t eat that much sugar? Well, maybe you eat more than you realize. Most people ingest their sugar a little at a time, a hard candy from a dish at a store, a teaspoon in a cup of tea or coffee. Maybe a soft drink or one or two cookies after lunch. Yes, some people demolish a few candy bars a day, but most of us get our sugar in small doses.
Are you saying, “So what?” Do you think that if it tastes good then it must be OK for you? After all, we all know that sugar is an energy booster so what can be wrong with a bit of it every now and then (and every now and then and every now and then and so on and so forth).
Well, guess who else besides you loves sugar? Cancer cells, that is who. Cancer cells gobble up three to five times as much glucose as normal cells do. Cancer cells kill for sugar and they kill healthy cells by depriving them of the sugar they need to survive. Eating less sugar is an insurance against tumors.
But, avoiding cancer is not the only reason to avoid an overdose of sugar. Sugar also weakens the immune system. The immune system is composed of different types of white blood cells. Some of these fight disease and others kill bacteria. Research has discovered that two hours after eating sugar people had 50% fewer of these disease fighters in their system. If staying healthy is your goal then avoiding sugar should be on your to-do list.
Sugar isn’t good for adults or for children. Ask any pediatrician what week of the year is his or her biggest money maker and you will hear the following, “The week after Halloween.” If you don’t believe me go to a neighborhood doctor’s office next November and you will find it full of coughing,sneezing, wheezing and runny-nosed children. They are recovering from their sugar addiction! They are feeling neither healthy nor happy.
Happiness is a side-benefit of a healthy, strong mind-body. A strong immune system is necessary for health and happiness. You might think that a candy bar, soft drink, or cake, cookie, or hard candy is going to bring you happiness and maybe it will…..for even longer than five minutes—-maybe up to a half an hour!
However, if you are looking for long-term well-being we suggest you find natural ways to ingest sugar. Fresh fruit is number one on the list. Dates and dried fruits are good too.
If you do have a sugar addiction then we suggest that you not try to cut back all at once. As we mention in our book Healing Depression the Mind-Body Way lasting change must always be done gradually. If we stress or strain to make changes in lifestyle we end up losing the battle and resuming our unhealthy habits. Take it one-step at a time, but do begin to think about your sugar intake and notice all the “little” bites of this and that that you pick up during the day. Feed the immune system what it needs for strength—-don’t feed those dangerous cells!
Thanks for reading and have a great week,