Thursday, March 4, 2010
We all know that sugar makes us gain weight. When we want to lose weight we cut down on sugar. But is weight gain the only consequence we face eating sugar?
Its not. I will show you how sugar works in the body and the effect it causes. For some people this might go straight over your heads because it will be a bit of science involved, but try to understand because this IS important and our body deserves better!
I'm going to start off saying that most people think a"calorie is just a calorie". That if you eat 2000 calories a day you will be healthy, that it does not matter which types of foods you eat, aslong as you reach your limit. I'm going to change your thinking and tell you that a calories is NOT just a calorie. It depends on HOW it is processed in your body!
This article is based on the video; Sugar: the bitter truth by Robert Lustig
People are heavier than ever and fat consumption has gone down. As fat has gone down, taste declines too, so what manufactures does to make food more tastier is they add sugar/high fructose corn syrup. As a result we are getting bigger and suffering more diseases! So its not the fat, its the sugar!
Just some grounding information.. Sucrose (or table sugar-the stuff you put in your coffee etc.) is half GLUCOSE and half FRUCTOSE. Glucose is needed in the body. But in my opinion after watching the video, fructose is a poison and is a big problem!
In a lot of processed foods these days the manufactures use HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP. HFCS is also half glucose and half fructose. Manufactures claim that HFCS and sugar are no different. They actually are not lying to you! They are both equally BAD. The problem is the quantities- we are eating too much!
Fructose consumption before WW2 from natural fruit and vegetables was about 15gms/day.
Nowadays we are eating 72.8gms/day!!!! With 1 in 4 kids being obese!
Now moving on to how calories work inside the body. We will focus on 120 calories of glucose (about two pieces of white bread) . 80% of the glucose calories will get used up by the organs, muscles and the rest of your body. Your cells run and operate on glucose.
The other 20% of calories goes to your liver
So what happens to the 20% of calories that goes to your liver?? (this is the tricky part)
The glucose turns to G.6.P (glucose 6 phosphate). The P means it has to be phosphoralated or a phosphate needs to be added to turn into glycogen (storage of sugar). So ATP (energy)- has three phosphates on it, it gives one of its Ps and turns into ADP-two phosphates.
Glucose also turns into Pyruvate which goes to the mitochondria (its the powerhouse-where the ATP is made) and turns into something called acetylcholate which goes through the Cribs cycle to make energy-ATP and carbon dioxide that you breathe out.
But some acetylcholate is left over which turns into citrate, which comes out of the mitochondria and gets worked on by some fat storing enzymes, these enzymes are working to turn these sugars into fat. The citrate is going to be turned into VLDL (this is the bad cholesterol which causes heart disease, obesity and a lot of other issues).
The glucose will cause an insulin response which increases leptin, a hormone made in your fat cells which sends a message to your mind to tell you, you are full!
Hope you are keeping up :)
Now on to the glass of orange juice you just drank! (Sucrose).
As stated above. Sucrose is half glucose and half fructose. We now know what 80% of the glucose will be used by the body, muscles and organs and 20% will go to the liver, lets now focus on the fructose.
With the fructose, all of the calories (60 calories) will go to the liver. Nothing will reach the body, muscles, organs. This should tell you something.. The liver is a huge organ which detoxifies the body, is there any coincidence that 100% of the fructose goes to the liver????
This is putting a huge stress on your liver!
Now back onto the 60 calories of fructose; also don't forget about the 12 calories of glucose that also goes to the liver! Thats going to be a lot of Phosphate stealing going on! Remember how the ATP (3 phosphates turned to ADP- two phosphates). Now it changes to AMP - 1 phosphate and then into IMP. Thats a lot of phosphate donations! So what is the consequence? You get a build up of uric acid. Uric acid is associated with Gout! That uric acid causes your endothelial cells (the cells that lines your arteries) to reduce the production of nitrate oxide (nitrate oxide keeps the arteries dilated or nice and wide so stuff can go through). If there is no or little nitrate oxide there, it will cause high blood pressure! Thats a problem these days.
You will also get the production of xylulose 5 P which is going to increase those fat storing enzymes.
And then we have pyruvate again which turns into acetylcholate which turns into ATP. Now you have a lot of those Phosphates again. But you have so much that you produce citrate which works with the fat storing enzymes and so now you have lots of VLDL (lots of heart disease making cholesterol) and you have lots of fat!
Wow! Hope you stayed with me here.
So that 120 calories of sucrose works totally different than the glucose alone. You can see it works differently but you end up with a lot of fat.
But thats not all!!!!
Also in the liver with fructose you get a lipid droplet, that causes you to have a nice fatty liver!
You are also going to get a increase in FFA (free fatty acids) which goes to your muscles that makes you muscularly insulin resistant, that means your insulin will stay nice and high which will store fat!
You also get JNK1. Its an enzyme produced in the liver which down regulates the insulin receptors which makes you liver insulin resistant!! That resistance makes your insulin levels go up even higher! which again makes you fat!
Now you have so much insulin making going on that your brain can't see the production of leptin which means you are never full and always hungry. Thats why you are eating all day!
We have a recipe for:
  • Hypertension
  • Heart disease
  • Obesity
  • Insulin Resistance
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Fatty liver
  • Can't stop eating
So is a calorie really just a calorie?
Absolutely not! They work completely differently. Until we realize this- we will keep pointing a finger at the fat.
If this went over your head, read it over and over again, til you understand!!
Make sure to watch the video.
I really hope you can understand this and I also deeply hope it will change your attitude about food!


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Whangarei, Northland, New Zealand
Hi.. Im Katie. I am 20 years old. I am a student nurse. I love learning about healthy eating and living healthy lifestyles. There are so many lies and myths about the food we eat today and I am determined to spread the word. If you have any questions don't be shy to ask. Email me at P.S I am not a doctor, I do not diagnose conditions. I am just hear to educate myself and others. Any symptoms I address please see your doctor.
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