Alright, so boom…dessert. Can I have it? What’s up with sugar? Why are you always advertising naturally sweetened?
The key to a lot of this food-combining situation is, understanding the difference between fructose and sucrose and how your body is metabolizing them.
Let's deep dive into what sugar is doing to your body.
When your gut digests refined sugar (sucrose, commonly known as table sugar) it gets broken down to 50% glucose and 50% fructose. The fructose itself doesn’t get absorbed by all the cells, it only gets metabolized in the liver and it does something call ATP trapping. When ATP trapping occurs, it is sending a signal to your vagal nerve (up to your brain) expressing that it doesn’t have energy, thus, creating that feeling of not feeling satisfied. This is an issue because then we feel like, oh shit, we need to eat more sugar that felt good (dopamine receptors) and tasted good (gustatory cells) and there it is we are hooked, more suga. Wham bam thank you ma’am.
Alright- well, what is this doing to me long term cause this snickers in the freezer is callin my name…
When you ingest fruit sugar there is fiber involved. These fermentable fibers will aid your gut in digestion. If you don't however get enough of that fermentable fiber, and you are consuming refined sugars, those bacteria start to eat away at the carbohydrate that makes up your gut barrier, called mucin. While this is happening we are also opened up to an issue with pathogenic bacteria. Pathogenic bacteria, given the opportunity, will swim up to the small intestine where they aren't suppose to be (your small intestine is where you metabolize sugar and fat) and cause a major issue. The bacteria in the small intestine will start to multiply thus causing inflammation in your gut. The tight junctions that make up the gut barrier will start to open up and as your body tries to ward it off, inflammation will occur then we have a real digestion issue.
Studies have shown that over time ingesting sugar can lead to a whole mountain of issues but what is actually happening long-term? To start your inflammatory biomarkers go up as well as telomere aging opening you up to a whole mess of disease. For those of you who don’t hear me rant about telomeres on the reg here’s a quick breakdown: Think of your telomeres like the tip at the end of a shoelace. Telomeres are the end of your DNA chromosome, and when these get damaged, overtime it ruins the integrity of the structure which in turn starts to speed up your aging process and can open up your DNA to potential disease. Other issues that can occur are the rise of testosterone levels. Sugar also can cause cognition atrophy, leaving you stuck in a fog and adding to free radical damage.
For those of you who like to bombard me with the typical- I workout, then wanna justify your sugar intake to me, "like I eat mad sugar and I can afford to!" Okay, chill, here is what is happening in your body. The glucose transporters get sucked up into the muscle, creating insulin, which you are in turn able to use as energy. But if you aren't exerting yourself your small dense LDL levels will increase and thus, opening you up to high cholesterol.
Steer clear of refined sugar, like Usain Bolt 08’ Beijing Summer Olympics that ass. Be diligent and read all of the ingredients of your products. And most of all trust your gut; if something seems sketchy it probably is sketchy. IN GUT WE TRUST. And as always, fuel with confidence, Cas <3