We have often heard in life that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. The same principle is relevant to diet and nutrition too.
There are myriads of articles and studies pertaining to sugar detox initiatives available on the internet, and many health and nutrition websites claim that if you cut off sugar completely from your diet, you can reach all your fitness and health goals. We also have influencers making us a part of their journey as they go through sugar detoxes, and their ‘before and after’ images showing off their stunning transformation often leave us in awe.
However, what no one tells us is that yes, cutting off sugar completely can be amazing for your health but it is nearly impossible to stop consuming sugar entirely as part of a balanced diet. Here’s what really happens when you cut down on sugar, and why stopping eating sugar altogether is not such a great idea.
Consuming sugar excessively is definitely bad for your health, and there are no two ways about it. But thinking of it as your sole enemy is where we go wrong. Having excessive amounts of sugar increases the risk of heart diseases, diabetes, and other harmful conditions.
A well-balanced diet, as recommended by nutritionists, has almost 10% of daily calories input from added sugar. Added sugar is when you add something sweet to your food while you’re preparing it, and it could be brown sugar, molasses, or corn syrup. It is important to note that limits do not apply to natural sugar, which is already present in carbs, milk, and fruits. Experts recommend that 45% of daily calories be taken from carbohydrates, and these could include natural sugars.
What does it mean to stop having sugar altogether? You can’t stop having sugar even if you remove it from your diet completely. And that is because all of the carbs that we eat break down into sugar. According to experts, carbs break down into glucose, a simple sugar, which is then used by our body and brain to provide energy for bodily functions.
So when you go on a sugar detox diet, you are not completely cutting it out–you are merely changing its form. Even if you cut out carbs entirely and live off of protein alone, even then your body would turn the protein and fats into sugar to energize your brain and other organs.