Monday, November 3, 2014


Low Sugar Diet

What is sugar? 

Sugar belongs to the carbohydrate group of foods. Naturally occurring sugars are found in all plant life -- dairy, grains, and nuts/seeds, and are the kinds of sugar the body runs best on.  Added sugar is the enemy of any healthy diet. Void of nutrition and packed with empty calories, added sugar is often disguised as high fructose corn syrup, raw sugar, sucrose, fructose, dextrose, and maltose.

Why should I adopt a low sugar diet?

When you eat sugar, your blood sugar rises (quickly) and your pancreas immediately jumps into action. It responds to the increase in blood sugar by secreting the hormone insulin, whose job -- among other things -- is to get that sugar out of the bloodstream pronto... by delivering it to the muscle cells where it can be used for energy and to the fat cells where is stored as fat. That's because if sugar hangs around the bloodstream, it ultimately does a lot of damage -- glomming onto red blood cells and creating sticky compounds that ultimately clog up the works.

Why should I avoid a diet high in sugar?

Diets high in sugar are now linked to increased risk for diabetes, Alzheimer's, some types of cancer, and obesity. Sugar depresses the immune system, ages the body, creates inflammation, and contributes to cravings, mood swings, PMS, and a host of other conditions.

If you stick to a low sugar diet by primarily eating good carbs, nutrient-dense foods that are naturally low in sugar, versus highly processed foods, you can avoid the dreaded spikes and crashes you get from high sugar diets.  Instead, you’ll discover steady and even energy throughout the day, meet your nutritional needs and avoid the risks associated with high sugar diets.

How do I adopt a low sugar diet?

To adopt a low sugar diet, simply avoid foods that are high in sugar.  And it's not just plain old garden variety table sugar that has this effect on the body. Some of the worst offenders when it comes to raising blood sugar are mashed potatoes, most processed bread, punch, pancakes, virtually all desserts, and even cornflakes. These foods convert quickly to sugar in the body.

Vitamins & Minerals

What are vitamins and minerals?

Vitamins and minerals are essential components of foods and are needed for every structure and function in the human body. Antioxidants are a particular class of vitamins and minerals that protect against a form of cellular damage called oxidation. Antioxidants include some vitamins (vitamin C and E), some minerals (selenium and zinc) but also include many compounds found in plant foods that are not vitamins or minerals (like quercetin, found in onions and apples).

Why do I need vitamins and minerals?

Getting sufficient vitamins and minerals is one of the best things you can do for your overall health and energy levels.
Vitamins and minerals are needed for the health of the immune system, the circulatory system, the heart, brain and lungs. They are essential for detoxification, fat burning, protection from disease and for the general health of all organs and tissues. They also help the liver get rid of harmful substances that we’re exposed to on a daily basis. Antioxidants in particular help protect your cells from the constant assault by rogue molecules called free radicals, an assault which can lead to disease and damage DNA.

How much do I need?

There are recommended daily allowances for most vitamins and minerals, but most experts believe these are way too low for optimal health and represent a kind of “minimum wage nutrition.”  It’s always a good idea to speak to a health professional regarding your health history and individual needs for different nutrients.

How do I get vitamins and minerals into my diet?

Eating a variety of foods is the best way to get all the vitamins and minerals you need each day. Whole or unprocessed foods — like fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, lean meats, fish, and poultry — are the best choices for providing the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy and grow properly.  However, it is a good insurance policy to take a quality multi-vitamin and mineral supplement on a daily basis