Let's Talk About Sugar!


Glucose spikes, sugary snacks, weight loss. Is it really the evil food? 

These are some of the words repeated when it comes to sugar and we need to make sense of the big noise coming from "the danger" of sugar.

Sugar is a type of carbohydrate and it's split in two groups:

๐ŸŠNatural sugar: this is found in all foods that are naturally sugary. This includes fruits (including dried, tinned fruits) and dairy (yoghurt and milk).

๐Ÿฌ Added sugar: this sugar is created through long manufacturing procedures and it includes things like table sugar, cakes, pastries, sweets and full-sugar drinks.

Natural sugar is encouraged in appropriate portions because it boosts your vitamins and minerals, boosts your immune system, strengthen your muscles and bones and reduce small things called free radicals (which increase the risks of cancer and other chronic conditions) through powerful antioxidants. ๐Ÿฆด๐Ÿ’ช

These are the portions:

๐Ÿ‡ Fruits: 

80g or a handful of fruits. For examples:

  • 5-6 strawberries or 1 medium apple or 1 tangerine

  • 30g of dried fruits (raisins, dried mango, dates)

๐Ÿฅ› Dairy:

  • 200ml milk
  • 125g yoghurt
  • 1 matchbox of cheese

On the other side, added sugar has a bit of a different impact on our health, specifically diabetes, heart attack, strokes and weight gain. Do you know the sugar cravings that you have? That's potentially a good starting to start from!

There are different reasons for sugar cravings but a very common one is stress. When we are stressed (whether psychological or physical), our body releases stress hormones, like cortisol. Little cortisol is good to boost our concentration for example. However, too much can lead to anxiety, depression, weight gain, digestion problems and sleep.

Cortisol release stimulates sugar cravings and eventually cause dopamine (satisfaction hormone) to be released. But the downfall is that sugar makes the dopamine in your brain less effective, so you just want more. And then the guilt kick in.

So what to do?

Out taste buds replace even as little as every 15 days. So if we go 15 days with no added sugar, and then try something sugary, you will find out how sweet it is. When you replace sugar cravings with something higher in protein (nuts, cheese, seeds, hummus and carrot sticks), it can help reduce the cravings and keep you full for longer!

Putting in action is the hardest bit, we can try a no added sugar challenge and see how you get on with it! Let us know on enquiries@mynutritionbalance.com

So much more to say about this topic!! This is a taster of the world of hormones and we will keep each other updated!