The Inflammatory Effect of Sugar

Written By: Noah Fulton

Sugar is everywhere. Seemingly harmless foods like breakfast cereals are coated with it, our fruit filled yogurt needs added sugar to enhance flavor, and we put it in our morning coffee. After dinner we grab a piece of chocolate or a cookie from the jar. Let’s not forget about that can of soda that got you through the afternoon! So, what is the big deal about sugar anyways? Recent research suggests we may be harming ourselves more than we know with our excessive sugar intake.

Sugar is a chronic toxin. One can of soda or one piece of candy is not going to cause you immediate issues, as we typically do not experience acute symptoms in response to sugar intake. However, daily intake over time can wear down our metabolic system and lead to chronic, low-grade inflammation. Chronic, low-grade inflammation is associated with several serious health conditions, such as:

  • Heart Disease
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Obesity
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Osteoarthritis

The good news is, we have options to satiate our sweet tooth. Eating natural sugars, those derived from whole fruits and vegetables, does not have an association to inflammation! Fruits and vegetables are also high in dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Building good dietary habits into our daily routine can make such a huge difference in inflammatory conditions and health in general. Look to avoid added sugars in your food selections and try to use a piece of fruit as your afternoon pick me up!