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Sweet Treats: How Sugar Consumption Affects Your Health

Wellness News Network
Your Source for Health & Wellness Information

Presented by: Chiropractic Spine Center

March, 2016

Excessive sugar consumption is a major contributor to health problems in our society. Sugar, in one form or another, can be found in many common food products, from breakfast cereal to salad dressing to ketchup. The U.S. Department of Agriculture states that, on a per capita basis, Americans
consumed about 130 pounds of sugar in 2011.1 In 2004, notes Statistics Canada, Canadians consumed about 110 grams of sugar (the equivalent of 26 teaspoons) each day.2 A 2008 study
published in the journal Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews may help explain these incredible numbers: Intermittent, excessive sugar consumption may lead to sugar addiction.3 Your chiropractor understands how sugar interacts with your body and can counsel you on how to limit your intake of sweets. Ask your chiropractor how you can overcome sugar addiction and take control of your health.

Obesity & Diabetes
Obesity and diabetes are two (often-related) health problems associated with excessive sugar consumption. Sugar is commonly consumed in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages,such as soft drinks, energy drinks and other beverages. These drinks frequently contribute to weight gain
and obesity. According to a 2001 study published in The Lancet, sugar-sweetened drink consumption is associated with childhood obesity.4 Another study, published in 2006 in the
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, reports that increased consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages causes weight gain and obesity and that public health measures should be implemented to discourage the intake of sugar-rich drinks as part of a healthy lifestyle.55
Excessive sugar consumption (especially in the form of sugar-sweetened beverages) leads to metabolic syndrome - a set of unfavorable health symptoms - and type 2 diabetes in many people. A 2010 article published in the journal Diabetes Care confirms that, in addition to weight gain, greater intake of sugary drinks is indeed associated with metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.6 Another study, published in 2004 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, reports that the excessive calories and large amounts of rapidly absorbable sugars associated with sugary drinks are linked to a greater degree of weight gain and a heightened risk for type 2 diabetes in young and middle-aged women.7

Cardiovascular Disease
Cardiovascular disease is a common health problem - and a leading cause of death - in our society. However, does sugar consumption play a role in the development of cardiovascular disease? The answer is yes, according to one study published in 2010 in the journal Circulation. The authors of this study report that intake of added sugars among American adolescents is positively associated with several measures or markers known to boost cardiovascular disease risk.8 Another study published in 2009 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition states that regular consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages in women leads to a greater risk of coronary heart disease in this group, even after other dietary and lifestyle factors are accounted for.9

Tooth Decay
Sugar consumption, including the consumption of soft drinks, plays a significant role in tooth decay. According to a study published in 2009 in the Journal of Zhejiang University, the acids and sugars found in soft drinks may cause both dental caries (i.e., cavities) and enamel erosion.10 A study published in 2001 in the Journal of Dental Education states that controlling sugar consumption is one of the - if not the - most important aspects of preventing
dental cavities.11

Depression is a complex health problem that may be caused by many factors. One often overlooked factor may be excessive sugar consumption. According to a 2002 study published in the journal Depression and Anxiety, sugar consumption may directly affect
the prevalence of major depression - a disorder characterized by bouts of low mood, low self-esteem and reduced interest in normally enjoyable activities. 12

Your chiropractor can counsel you on how to use diet and nutrition to help balance your blood sugar levels, reduce your sweets cravings and reduce your risk for the health problems commonly
associated with intermittent, excessive sugar consumption.

QUESTION: What are some of the health risks from too much sugar consumption?
A) type 2 diabetes
B) depression
C) weight gain
D) all of the above
ANSWER: D) all of the above

TRUE OR FALSE: Excessive sugar intake may also affect heart health

QUESTION: How much sugar did the average American consume in one year?
A) 130 pounds
B) 110 pounds
C) 130 grams
ANSWER: A 130 pounds (Dept of Agriculture report)

References and Sources:
1. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook: June 2012. http://1.usa.gov/137gVBC.
2. Statistics Canada. Sugar consumption among Canadians of all ages. http://bit.ly/Ysg0Ny.
3. Avena NM, Rada P, Hoebel BG. Evidence for sugar addiction: Behavioral and neurochemical effects of intermittent, excessive sugar intake. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews. 2008; 32(1): 20-39.
4. Ludwig DS, Peterson KE, Gortmaker SL. Relation between consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks and childhood obesity: A prospective, observational analysis. The Lancet. 2001. Feb; 357(9255): 505-508.
5. Malik VS, Schulze MB, Hu FB. Intake of sugar-sweetened beverages and weight gain: A systematic review. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2006. Aug; 84(2): 274-288.
6. Malik VS, et. al. Sugar-sweetened beverages and risk of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care. 2010. Nov; 33(11): 2477-2483.
7. Schulze MB, et. al. Sugar-sweetened beverages, weight gain, and incidence of type 2 diabetes in young and middle-aged women. The Journal of the American Medical Association. 2004. Aug; 292(8): 927-934.
8. Welsh JA, Sharma A, Cunningham SA, Vos MB. Consumption of added sugars and indicators of cardiovascular disease risk among US adolescents. Circulation. 2010; 121: 1356-1364.
9. Fung TT, et. al. Sweetened beverage consumption and risk of coronary heart disease in women. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2009. Apr; 89(4): 1037-1042.
10. Cheng R, Yang H, Shao M, Zhou X. Dental erosion and severe tooth decay related to soft drinks: A case report and literature review. Journal of the Zhejiang University. 2009. May; 10(5): 395-399.
11. Burt BA, Pai S. Sugar consumption and caries risk: A systematic review. Journal of Dental Education 2001. Oct; 65(10): 1017-1023.
12. Westover AN, Marangell LB. A cross-national relationship between sugar consumption and major depression? Depression and Anxiety. 2002; 16(3): 118-120.

Disclaimer: Information contained in the Wellness News Network Newsletter is for educational and general purposes only and is designed to assist you in making informed decisions about your health. Any information contained herein is not intended to substitute advice from your physician or other healthcare professional.
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