How Sugar Can Ruin Your Health

Have you ever heard your grandmother or parent tell you that too much sugar is not good for you? Bu, how can something that tastes so good be so bad for you ?! I still remember one of my first encounters with that sweet, sugary taste … I was probably around 8 years old when my grandmother on my dad's side came over to our house to visit one weekend. She was infamous (and still is) for having a sweet tooth and then, bringing over some delectable delight. When she opened up her bag, inside was a box of Funny Bones (as they are still called). My mother, begrudgingly allowed me to taste a piece of one. These Funny Bones consist of a slightly harder, dark chocolate shell encasing a soft chocolate cake concoction; and inside of this chocolate cake was a delicious, slightly gooey sweet, peanut butter filling. It was heaven in the shape of an éclair !! Of course, I could not resist asking for one more piece of this treat- just one more tiny, scrumptious morsel to send my taste buds into a tizzy! However, my mother would not allow me but the one piece at that time (she was not an advocate of children eating a lot of sweets).

In any case, I grew to absolutely love these Funny Bones, and to this very day, they are still at the top of my list of favorite sweets. However, they do not sell Funny Bones in North Carolina (at least not that I have seen- and trust me, I've looked), so occasionally, my mom would mail me down a box (with one taken out for herself) while I was in college. Now, any time I go home, I always make sure that I buy at least two boxes to bring back with me!

That's the beauty of sugar, though. It is sinfully delicious because you know that it has a lot of fat and almost no nutritional value in it whatever. Plus, you know that if you eat too much, it can make you sick; it can make you gain weight; it an clog your arteries; it can cause cavities … ah, the list goes on and on. However, sugar in moderation is not all that bad for you. For some severe cases of sugar abuse, it can actually contribute to the reduction in defense against bacterial infection; it can also cause you to lose tissue elasticity and function. It can contribute to depression (due to the extreme rush of energy as well as the hard crash that follows a sugar binge). There are also studies that have been done to show that sugar abuse can contribute to Alzheimer's disease, the formation of kidney stones, hormonal imbalance, and increase in the concentration of bile acids in colon, which may lead to colon cancer.

Many people are not aware of sugar's addictive qualities. It can almost be toxicating, much like that of alcohol. Did you know that sugar can actually increase or worsen the effects of premenstrual syndrome in women? Or that it can worsen the symptoms in a child who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)? Also, not know to many people is the fact that the human body changes sugar into two to five times MORE fat in the bloodstream than it does starch! Cut back on the sugar intake. This does not mean that you can not have the occasional candy bar or two or three, but know your limits and your body's limits. On a positive note, the less sugar that you consume, the more emotionally stable you'll be- look it up!

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