If you are reading this, I would like to welcome you to our blog!!! For our first post, we are highlighting the writings of the 8WW founder, Mr. Dane Donahue. Today we are sharing his health words of wisdom. Please read and PLEASE share. We are truly facing a health crisis and sugar is much to blame. Help us help educate you, your family, & your friends.
The effect of sugar is causing a devasting health crisis in this country. Diabetes is a metabolic disease, meaning it affects how we process, create and store energy in the body. In the last decade, the cases of people living with diabetes jumped almost 50 percent. It is one of the chronic diseases that is growing rapidly in this country and is now the 7th leading cause of death.
Why is sugar bad and how does it affect our bodies? To answer that, you first need to understand the role of insulin in your body. When you eat, your body turns food into sugars, or glucose. At that point, your pancreas releases insulin. Insulin serves as a “key” to open your cells, to allow the glucose to enter and allow you to use the glucose for energy. It is important to remember that the body can only store small amounts of blood sugar in the muscles and
liver as something called “glycogen”. The process of burning sugar for fuel is called “aerobic glycolysis” and this is what happens when you exercise aerobically. Your body coverts sugar and oxygen to something called ATP. Think of is as the body’s fuel system. However, if you “over-fill” the tank with sugar and refined carbs especially is the engine isn’t running and your body is sedentary, the sugar will spill over because your body can’t handle that much sugar at once. The body converts the excess sugar to its storable form called fat (triglycerides). Your body only has about 1 teaspoon of sugar in the bloodstream at one time and the rest must be converted and stored. The more sugar you eat without burning it, the more it spills over and is stored as
fat. Therefore, you can now see why we have such a problem with obesity in this country.
Our body shapes are changing such that more and more people are developing “visceral fat” or deep fat, which is different form subcutaneous fat. It is deep fat around your “viscera” (your organs) and it CRUSHES your organs, and produces inflammatory chemicals such as cytokines and estrogens. Visceral fat is the result of insulin resistance, i.e. when your insulin is not working to get the sugar into the cells. Over the past few generations of Americans, we are seeing the natural and beautiful statuesque human body change from a muscular and lean body, to an overweight and plump body type. Imagine a roman statue of an “obese” god or soldier?
The underlying problem and primary cause of obesity and blood sugar related health problems is that we eat way too much sugar and refined carbohydrates. Two hundred years ago, the average American ate only 2 pounds of sugar a year. In 1970, we ate 123 pounds of sugar per year. Today, the average American consumes almost 152 pounds of sugar in one year. This is equal to 3 pounds (6 cups) of sugar consumed in one week! We should be getting no more than 3-6 tsp. of sugar per day (12 to 25 grams) and yet the average American is consuming close to 20 tsp. of sugar per day (over 80 grams).
Part of the problem of sugar consumption is what we consider sugar. We tend to think of sugar as the white stuff we put in our coffee or bake with. But to understand where the sugar in our diets is coming from you should consider that nearly 70 percent of the calories from added sugars that Americans eat on a daily basis come from processed foods like breads, jams, cakes and ice cream. Added sugars can also be found in things like tomato sauce, condiments and salad dressings, and multigrain crackers and cereals.
There are 3 main labs tests that we look at to diagnose blood sugar issues: Fasting Glucose, Fasting Insulin and HbA1C (hemoglobin A1C). If your fasting glucose level is from 100 to 125 mg/dL (5.6 to 6.9 mmol/L) is considered pre diabetes. If it’s 126 mg/dL (7 mmol/L) or higher on two separate tests, you have diabetes. Glycated Hemoglobin (HbA1c) is hemoglobin (the oxygen carrying protein in your bloodstream) with a sugar attached to it. An A1C level of 6.5 percent or higher on two separate tests indicates that you have diabetes. An A1C between 5.7 and 6.4 percent indicates pre diabetes. Below 5.7 is considered normal although we like to see it as close to 5.0 as possible. Finally, Insulin is the hormone secreted by your pancreas and should be
around 5 mg/dl and never raise over 15 mg/dl or you are producing too much insulin to meet the demand of reducing your blood sugar. Eventually if you tax your pancreas to hard over time, it will stop working and you will become diabetic.
So, what can, and should, we do if we are moving towards or are affected by diabetes, pre-diabetes or are just concerned that we are consuming too much sugar and refined carbohydrates? Dr. Mark Hyman, M.D. is one of the foremost authorities on what sugar does to the body. Here are his recommendations for lowering your blood sugar and dealing with pre or full-blown diabetes.
1. Eat whole, fresh foods.
2. Remove all sweeteners.
3. Control inflammation.
4. Increase fiber-rich foods.
5. Get enough sleep.
6. Address nutrient deficiencies.
7. Incorporate the right exercise.
8. Control stress levels.
If you are interested in learning more, we recommend the best-selling book by Diane SanFilippo, “The 21 Day Sugar Detox”. You’ll be glad you detoxed!
Thursday, January 9th, we will have dinner and learn how to get 2020 Vision of your health
goals, 6:30 pm
First time joining us? Enjoy your dinner at no cost! If you have attended a dinner before, bring
a friend and receive both dinners for free. Returning guest? Dinner is just $10