Sugar May Be Our Worst Health Risk

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Mikie, Jun 26, 2009.

  1. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I just watched a new program on PBS with Dr. Michael Royzen (may not be spelled correctly). It was all about staying away from things which prematurely age us and doing what we can to stay healthy and younger than our cronological age.

    The doc had a video graphic which shows what happens inside our blood vessels when we eat sugar. The blood vessel wall linings start to crack. The body repairs these cracks with plaque. Eventually, this can narrow the vessels and they will start to clog up with platelets. The whole thing can break loose and cause blindness, strokes, and heart attacks. We all know that sugar isn't good for us but seeing that video was really an eye opener.

    For years, the medical establishment did us a horrible disservice by telling us it was the fat in our diets which was causing heart attacks and strokes. There are bad fats, like anything hydroginated, which do cause health risks, but sugar is even worse.

    In this country, we are addicted to sugar. We consume it constantly and develop insulin resistance. That means that the insulin we produce is no longer effective in handling the sugar in our blood. This can lead to Type II Diabetes. The weight gain from eating a high-carb diet can lead to all kinds of other problems.

    I had older clients when I was in Medicare insurance sales who had multiple health problems. The worst ones had Diabetes and were morbidly obese. Their knees could no longer support them so they became less active. That only led to more obesity. Many of them were wheelchair bound and wearing diapers. As they became less active and gained more weight, their Diabetes worsened. It's a horrible cycle but the good news is that we can do something about it.

    We can get carbs from our fruits and veggies. Products which list anything ending in "ose" contains sugar. Fructose corn syrup is often one of the main ingredients in processed products. Some fruits and veggies are high on the glycemic index and should be eaten in small amounts, only infrequently. White potatoes fall into this category. Corn is also high on the index. White bread and rice should be eliminated. Whole grain products and brown rice are much better choices.

    I work part time as a cashier in a supermarket and see just how unhealthy the average American eats. We have BOGO's (buy one, get one free). They are often for large bags of candy and cookies. Temptations are everywhere.

    I stopped smoking when I saw my Dad's yellow nicotine-stained fingers in his casket. He died of a heart attack from emphasema after smoking all his life. He was a doctor and knew better but was addicted to nicotine. My step-sister attended my Mom's memorial service and she has emphasema and was pulling her oxygen tank with her. She smoked all her life too. We are now well aware of the dangers of smoking.

    I think we are only becoming aware of the dangers of sugar. Like with smoking, the damage isn't immediate nor noticable. It all goes on inside our bodies until, one day, we suffer a serious health consequence.

    My ex had six bypasses done a couple of years ago. He is addicted to sweet food and candy. Before they released him from the hospital, a young "nutritionist" came in to "educate" him about his diet. It was known he is insulin resistant. All she talked about was watching his fat intake. I asked about carbs and she said carbs didn't matter. Did she even look at his chart?

    Watching that program was my moment of truth. I am giving up all forms of sugar and limiting my carb intake to fruits and veggies. BTW, plums are now one of the superfoods which are recommended. One plum is a healthy between-meal snack.

    I hope to feel better when my healthier diet kicks in. I'll let y'all know. Just wanted to share this because I know so many of us crave carbs.

    Love, Mikie
  2. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    Thanks, Mikie. I've watched Dr. Roizen along with Dr. Oz on Oprah. The more I learn about sugar, the more I realize what a poison it is to our bodies. And when I started reading food labels I was surprised to see how many foods have sugar hidden in them. Even table salt has sugar added to it!!
  3. SpiroSpero

    SpiroSpero New Member

    Sugar definetly is bad but in my eyes there is no need to totally stay away from rice or white bread. Sure they are not healthy but just take a look at Asia. This whole continent eats rice on a daily basis and they don't have a higher incident of diabetes. Look at Italy, they consume wheat in most meals: Pizza, pasta, bread, it's all made of wheat and they don't suffer of more diabetes.

    There are two decisive factors when you look at nutrition:

    1) Do you do enough sports? You should be able to even eat some bad foods without having adverse health effects (no trans fats, no hydrogenated fats and not too much sugar of course). Your body burns all that garbage. Of course if you get skin diseases like acne or you get obese, this is a warning and you have to change your diet. With CFS it's a whole different story.

    2) You have to look at what else you eat. If you eat vegetables, fruits, salad, meat, carbohydrates and fats in a balanced way there is no problem when you drink that coke or eat that pizza every now and then. They are not healthy but I highly doubt that you gain an advantage over someone who enjoys cosuming both every now and then and does sports. If you are obese things are different of course. Either you eat too much calories or you do not do enough sports or like with CFS your metabolism gets screwed up. If your metabolism is very slow you have to work on the causes or cut back.

    A friend of my sister is a doctor in hospital. He has night shifts and sometimes has to work 15 hours in a row. When he has time he orders a pizza or some chinese food and drinks coke. He is perfectly healthy, is athletic, he has no skin conditions and all the women love him. He ALWAYS orders pizza or some chinese food because it has to be fast. While people with CFS or other illnesses probably will suffer under this diet there are enough people you seem perfectly adapted.

    My grandparents as well as their grandparents were farmers or living on the farm. Guess what, they ate potatoes and/or bread to every meal and there is not one incident of diabetes in all the relatives! Why? Because they were living of what the farm gave them. They had meat (fat meat), salad, berries, vegetables etc. and they worked hard every day (my grandparents both got 86).

    Food mix, physical activity and genetics determine if we get ill or not and if we get old or not. We cannot focus on nutrition only.
  4. Dlebbole

    Dlebbole New Member

    I've known this for a very long time, and I keep learning the same lesson again and again. When I stray from a sugar-free diet, my symptoms get worse, especially my anxiety.

    You have inspired me, so we will do this together!
  5. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi Mikie, Hi All,

    Great post Mikie. I read once that sugar majorly impacts immune system function. Which is just bout the last thing we with CFS/ME would want to do. I just did a quick search and found the following:


    suppresses the immune system
    causes hyperactivity in children
    kidney damage
    mineral deficiencies, especially chromium, copper, calcium and magnesium
    makes the blood acidic
    tooth decay
    advances aging
    digestive disorders
    Candida albicans
    decreased blood flow to the heart
    causes osteoporosis
    causes food allergies
    causes eczema
    free radical formation
    loss of enzyme function
    increases liver and kidney size
    brittle tendons
    blood clots

    Hope everybody has a nice weekend. And for goodness sakes, limit those sugary temptations! :)

    Best, Wayne[This Message was Edited on 06/27/2009]
  6. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    adding to Wayne's list; sugar also causes inflammation throughout the body.
  7. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    There isn't anything wrong with eating fruit. Fruit is full of antioxidants and minerals which are important for your health. The culprit is the added table sugars, corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup and all of the 'oses that are added to food items and beverages. These are the sugars that Dr. Roizen is talking about.

    If you love plums, then eat plums! In moderation of course :) Your body will thank you.
  8. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Thanks for all your interest and great responses on this thread. Lots of good info here. Seems sugar is even worse than I thought. I am tired today, my first day of staying totally away from sugar. It'll probably take a few days for my system to get used to it. I expect once withdrawal is done, I'll start to feel better.

    Some docs and nutritionists say that white flour is even worse than sugar. There are a lot of whole-grain breads available and even more gluten-free options now. If one eats white rice, basmhati (I probably spelled that wrong too :) does not raise sugar in the blood as much as other types of white rice. Otherwise, brown is a good choice.

    I don't think one needs to give up fruit. It is very healthy but some of it is high on the glycemic index. The doc also said it is much better to eat small portions and have small snacks during the day. He showed a stomach stretched out to three times its normal size. I think common sense is one's best guideline.

    Wish I could thank you all individually but I have to get going. Again, thanks, everyone and good luck to those who are weaning off the sugars. Congratulations to those who have done it and improved their health. Kudos!

    Love, Mikie
  9. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    In addition to looking at the glycemic index, you also have to take into consideration how much fiber there is in the fruit. If it is a high fiber fruit, then the glycemic number isn't quite as important as the fiber helps to slow down the rate at which the sugar is used by the body. Also, with bananas, the riper it is, the higher the glycemic index.
  10. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    I'm one person who doesn't buy into the candida/yeast concept. A true systemic yeast infection is a very serious life threatening illness that does kill people if not treated immediately. As far as I know there is no science to prove that eating fruit causes candida.

    I do have a mild fructose problem due to antibiotics, however, at no time was it ever recommended to me that I stop eating fruit. I eat fruit daily and don't suffer because of it.

    There are a lot of claims made regarding CFS that I think in the future will be shown to be false. Fructose intolerance and candida will be two of them.
  11. TigerLilea

    TigerLilea Active Member

    Do you bake at all? I save overly ripe bananas and use those in baking in place of adding sugar. They are great in bran muffins.
  12. cfsgeorge

    cfsgeorge New Member

    Those are the top 3 causes of death and diseases in the US. As a nation, we are smoking, eating, and drinking ourselves to death. These are all 100% preventable.
  13. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Is OK as long as one isn't eating too much of the higher glucemic ones. It really doesn't take much to fill one up.

    It is next to impossible for me to avoid sugar altogether without giving up just about everything. I do eat a little bit of whole grain cereal which contains some sugar. The sugar content is almost at the end of the list of grains, nuts, and dried fruit. I know dried fruit has sugar but there isn't much in the cereal. I usually add some berries or half a banana. This will carry me through the day feeling full and satisfied. Then, I either eat my main meal for lunch or just have a couple of small meals. I only eat one full meal a day.

    I bought a roasted chicken at the deli today and ate some of it with some fresh asparagas, which I steamed. I don't eat the chicken skin. It was delicious and very filling. Because it was just veggies and foul, I was able to put some butter on the asparagas. I don't mix fats with carbs, ala Suzanne Somers. I've read and heard from other sources that when one mixes fats with carbs, it's the worst combination one can eat. An "All American" breakfast of pancakes, syrup, and bacon, ham or sausage is a heart attack on a plate.

    Seems to me that once we give up the high sugars/carb loading, it takes much less food to satisfy us. I also noticed just how good my chicken and asparagas tasted to me today. I think I'm starting to feel a bit better too.

    I used to eat the Suzanne Somers way but had gotten away from it. I am having a difficult time losing weight, so I definitely need to work on that as well. I also have to get back to working out. It's hard for me because of the CFIDS/ME. Working out can really exhaust me and I need to conserve my energy for my job. Oy! We are always having to make tradeoffs.

    Yes, smoking, obesity, and too much alcohol is killing us. Dr. Roizen did mention that one drink a day is healthy. My own doc told me to drink a small glass of wine, a beer, or one cocktail a day. Alcohol is high in sugar but if the choice is red wine, it does have some healthy benefits. Those who drink moderately live longer, statistically, than those who drink too much or not at all.

    I don't think we need to be fanatics about our diets but I do think we need to try to eat healthy foods and leave the junk behind. Yesterday, I was thinking about how good a dish of ice cream would taste. Then, I remembered that video graphic and decided I just wasn't going to do that to my body. I think realizing we are making choices, instead of just mindlessly eating, makes it easier to be healthy.

    Again, thanks for all the responses and interest in this post. Good luck to everyone.

    Love, Mikie
  14. slowdreamer

    slowdreamer New Member

    Hi Mikie .Thanks for bringing this up..I have recently been introduced to these ideas through the SCD Diet elucidated by Elaine Gottschall and the Weston Price Diet which lokks at what healthy cultures ate in past aeons...Much iof it resonates with me and I plan to follow many of the ideas..There is some reference to These on this board if you look back.Otherwise Google and there is lots of info..
    Yhe lovely Weston Price Book is called Nourishing Traditions.

    Gut dysbiosis I believe is a very big lurking nasty and should be addressed..
  15. Waynesrhythm

    Waynesrhythm Member

    Hi All,

    Aside from everything else mentioned here, my own experience is that sugar detrimentally affects my appetite (wanting to eat) and ability to feel satiated. This can last as long as 12-24 hours after eating it. For me, it's not a weight issue, it's more an uneasy feeling of wanting to eat something (and not only more sugar) when I'm not necessarily hungry. All in all, not a comfortable feeling.

    On the comments above about eating fruits. I agree with what's been mentioned. I might just add that in spite of fruits being generally OK to eat, we should always monitor how foods affect us. Plus, foods we could eat in the past does not necessarily translate to being able to eat them in the future.

    Interestingly, (according to my understanding) changing or raising our consciousness may leave us less able to eat certain foods. I think our bodies are likely able to handle fresh local food much better than food that has been grown on large commercial farms, is often several days old and has traveled half way across the country or globe.

    I think commercial foods of any kind, especially from caged animals, probably are not conducive to good health. And our bodies may reject them because of the discordant vibrations often associated with them. Hope I'm not getting too far off from the original topic here.

    Thanks everyone for your contributions.

    Best, Wayne
    [This Message was Edited on 06/28/2009]
  16. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    This has been a wonderful thread and I've enjoyed reading all the responses. Yes, a big plate of pancakes, syrup and sausage does sound wonderful. If I were to eat it now, I'll bet it would make me sick :) I also am finding that the less I eat sugar, the fewer cravings I have.

    Today, I took some of that lean chicken and made a salad like the ones we sell at the store. I put it in baby greens and added some feta cheese, walnuts, and a few dried cranberries. I had a raspberry walnut vinegrette dressing. It was so filling and yummy that I've felt full and satsified all day. Again, even though the dressing is "lite," it does have some sugar, as do the cranberries. I'm not going nuts on this diet change but I'm eliminating the white flour altogether and not eating any candy or desserts. If I want them, my Suzanne Somers books have recipes, even for ice cream.

    Fortunately, I love cottage cheese and I bought some fat free. I can add fruit to that for a nice salad too.

    I tolerate alcohol well but even half a glass of wine makes me very tired. I don't want to drink it too early but I have to be concerned about drinking it too close to my bedtime Klonopin. Since my allergies have been so bad, my nightime med contains some alcohol in it to quell my dry cough. If my allergies are bad, I forgo the wine because I may substitute the cough syrup instead. Again, we are always having to make tradeoffs and manage our energy, diets, meds and activities. We are all executive managers!

    Again, my friends, thanks for all your responses. Hugs, love and prayers coming your way.

    Love, Mikie
  17. Sun_Rae

    Sun_Rae New Member

    If you don't think you have a problem with candida (like I thought). Take a couple doses of Phytostan and see what happens. It's a totally natural anti-fungal and after 3 days on it I got sicker than a dog for 2 weeks.

    Now when I relapse (like today with a birthday cake at work), I feel worse than before I did the anti-candida diet. I feel so bad when I cheat now that it's not even worth it.

    Sugar is the devil, I swear! But oh how I love it!