I got “The Sugar”

Big Gulp

Diabetes is rising each year since 1994. Generation Y-ers are starting on medications before they graduate college. This rise in ‘the sugar” isn’t just from what we eat… it’s from what we drink!

The CDC reports that 60-70 percent of 2-19 year olds have daily sugary drinks, averaging 50% of the 150-200 pounds of sugar Americans consume come from beverages.

Whether it be the Dunkin’ Medium Regulah (that’s not a typo. That’s how we say it here in “Bahstin”), the “Dew”, or the wicked hydrating Gatorade… We are loading our bodies with sugar, our waistlines with extra inches and our pancreas with a task it can’t perform.

Studies reveal people who drank one or more sugar drink a day had 83% higher risk of diabetes than those who drank less than one a day!

As if it isn’t hard enough to resist the temptation of the sugar ladened sodas; the brilliant packaging companies clearly state a Sprite has “38gms of sugar” in the nutrition facts but often this is only for one serving. And wouldn’t you pay an extra $1 for the “Big Gulp” (which may be as many as 4 servings)?!

There’s No Lie to the Name “Monster”

Its no surprise something labeled “Monster” or “Red Bull” will wreak havoc on our pancreas’ ability to function…its a mere 5 tsp of sugar per serving (but many cans are more than one serving). Hmm… haven’t seen any of the teenagers in my town ‘sharing’ their boost to stick to the serving size.

Unfortunately, the beverages aimed at toddlers and children are failing the well-meaning parent as well. From fruit juice to Stoneyfield drinkable yogurt, these drinks are pouring 25-38 grams (5-7 teaspoons!) of sugar into our children each drink.

Diabetes leads to thirst and tiredness in the short-term and damage to blood vessels, nerves and organs if left untreated. Excess sugar has increased obesity rates. Obesity raises blood pressure and ‘bad’ cholesterol levels while lowering levels of ‘good’ cholesterol.

  • Heart disease strikes people with diabetes almost twice as often as people who don’t have diabetes.
  • People with diabetes tend to develop heart disease at a younger age than people without diabetes.
  • Two out of three people with diabetes die from either heart disease or stroke.  (WebMD)

This means heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure will happen in your 20’s and 30’s instead of 50 years old.  First time in 200 years, kid’s life expectancy is shorter than that of their parents.

Excess sugar can be stored as fat in the liver. This condition can lead to ‘fatty liver” condition which is linked to an increased risk of diabetes and even liver cancer.

How much sugar is too much?

The American Heart Association recently released guidelines for adults to have no more than 6-9 tsp. (Quick note: 4gms = 1tsp of sugar) Wow! That’s one beverage. No room for the yummy cookie, candy or scoop of ice cream.

The simple answer?  Stop drinking sugar… easier said than done when the sugary preference is often more available than a bottle of water at work, parties, “pasta dinners” and take out.  Why pay $2-3 a beverage to get in line for the Diabetic train? Why follow the ‘family history’ – you can take a different road- change the family history and follow a new journey… What about the amazing benefits of supplements to decrease blood sugar? Drink water. Try Seltzer with a splash of juice or lemon. Drink for thirst, not for diabetes. Drink 4 Better Health.

 

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