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A doctor’s strategy to incorporating sugar in your diet.

May 19th, 2011 No Comments

Many people have been responding to the NYTimes article titled “Is Sugar Toxic?”

I posted about it a couple of weeks ago as well.

The more I think about it, the more I believe the journalist was addressing Americans’ over-consumption of sugar and lack of knowledge about its effects on the body.  People who eat a healthy diet shouldn’t be “scared” necessarily.  And it’s unrealistic to believe we’re not going to eat sugar.  (I mean, can you imagine??!)

I asked Dr. Martha Howard from Chicago Healers to offer advice on how to manage sugar in our everyday diets.

Her main strategy is to UNDERSTAND THE GLYCEMIC INDEX

“Basically the glycemic index of a food is an indication of how high it raises the blood sugar after you eat it, in comparison to pure sugar.  For example, if you ate a piece of hard candy it would have a glycemic index of about 100 (pure sugar) and if you ate several pieces and no other food, it would raise your blood sugar to a high level very quickly.

The way to manage this is to get familiar with the list and then eat mostly foods that are on the low and moderate lists.

Food combining [for example sugar with protein] can make a difference in total glycemic level.  That is why I suggest eating sweets as a small dessert with a meal [not on their own]. That said, high glycemic foods mean a higher insulin response, and eventually greater insulin resistance, which is the source of metabolic syndrome.”

Click here for a list of food and how they rank.  Anything under 55 is considered low.  I think you’ll be surprised at some healthy foods that have a high number (rice cakes for example).

Otherwise she says it’s important to exercise, avoid juice and sodas, and learn the different names for sugar so you can be a savvy shopper when you do buy food in a box.

You know my feeling on that – AVOID FOOD IN A BOX OR CAN when possible!

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