December 24, 2009
OK, I am going to be the bad guy this Christmas.
Call me Scrooge.
Call me The Grinch.
But while hundreds of e-mailers, bloggers, and internet health gurus are sending out special generous gifts, articles and e-books during this holiday season, I am going to rain on your parade. I am going to give you an anti-gift. It is probably something you will think about when you are eating that holiday cookie or piece of fudge.
However, I do know that there are those of you out there who need help. You don't want to repeat the vicious cycle of arriving at January ten pounds overweight. You don't want to have to give some lame excuse to your friend or family about how you can't eat Grandma's special brownies. You need a mental defense for yourself to remind your brain why you're going to have self-control and why you may not need all that sugar after all.
So I present to you an article, written by Nancy Appleton, PhD, and G.N. Jacobs and used with Dr. Appleton's permission. This article is entitled “143 Reasons Sugar Ruins Your Health”, and is an excerpt from Nancy's shocking but well-researched book “Suicide by Sugar”, which you can look at by clicking here.
OK, you sitting down? I'm going to cross my fingers that you're not sipping a hot chocolate while you read this, and I'm going to fire away. By the way, notice that EVERY SINGLE REASON HAS A SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH CITATION AT THE END OF THIS POST.
So here are 143 Reasons Sugar Ruins Your Health, and again, I apologize in advance for any damage I do to your enjoyment of your holiday cookie intake…
1. Sugar can suppress your immune system.
2. Sugar upsets the mineral relationships in the body.
3. Sugar can cause juvenile delinquency in children.
4. Sugar eaten during pregnancy and lactation can influence muscle force production in offspring, which can affect an individual’s ability to exercise.
5. Sugar in soda, when consumed by children, results in the children drinking less milk.
6. Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses and return them to fasting levels slower in oral contraceptive users.
7. Sugar can increase reactive oxygen species (ROS), which can damage cells and tissues.
8. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, inability to concentrate and crankiness in children.
9. Sugar can produce a significant rise in triglycerides.
10. Sugar reduces the body’s ability to defend against bacterial infection.
11. Sugar causes a decline in tissue elasticity and function – the more sugar you eat, the more elasticity and function you lose.
12. Sugar reduces high-density lipoproteins (HDL).
13. Sugar can lead to chromium deficiency.
14. Sugar can lead to ovarian cancer.
15. Sugar can increase fasting levels of glucose.
16. Sugar causes copper deficiency.
17. Sugar interferes with the body’s absorption of calcium and magnesium.
18. Sugar may make eyes more vulnerable to age-related macular degeneration.
19. Sugar raises the level of neurotransmitters: dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine.
20. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.
21. Sugar can lead to an acidic digestive tract.
22. Sugar can cause a rapid rise of adrenaline levels in children.
23. Sugar is frequently malabsorbed in patients with functional bowel disease.
24. Sugar can cause premature aging.
25. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.
26. Sugar can cause tooth decay.
27. Sugar can lead to obesity.
28. Sugar increases the risk of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
29. Sugar can cause gastric or duodenal ulcers.
30. Sugar can cause arthritis.
31. Sugar can cause learning disorders in school children.
32. Sugar assists the uncontrolled growth of Candida Albicans (yeast infections).
33. Sugar can cause gallstones.
34. Sugar can cause heart disease.
35. Sugar can cause appendicitis.
36. Sugar can cause hemorrhoids.
37. Sugar can cause varicose veins.
38. Sugar can lead to periodontal disease.
39. Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.
40. Sugar contributes to saliva acidity.
41. Sugar can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.
42. Sugar can lower the amount of Vitamin E in the blood.
43. Sugar can decrease the amount of growth hormones in the body.
44. Sugar can increase cholesterol.
45. Sugar increases advanced glycation end products (AGEs), which form when sugar binds non-enzymatically to protein.
46. Sugar can interfere with the absorption of protein.
47. Sugar causes food allergies.
48. Sugar can contribute to diabetes.
49. Sugar can cause toxemia during pregnancy.
50. Sugar can lead to eczema in children.
51. Sugar can cause cardiovascular disease.
52. Sugar can impair the structure of DNA.
53. Sugar can change the structure of protein.
54. Sugar can make the skin wrinkle by changing the structure of collagen.
55. Sugar can cause cataracts.
56. Sugar can cause emphysema.
57. Sugar can cause atherosclerosis.
58. Sugar can promote an elevation of low-density lipoproteins (LDL).
59. Sugar can impair the physiological homeostasis of many systems in the body.
60. Sugar lowers enzymes ability to function.
61. Sugar intake is associated with the development of Parkinson’s disease.
62. Sugar can increase the size of the liver by making the liver cells divide.
63. Sugar can increase the amount of liver fat.
64. Sugar can increase kidney size and produce pathological changes in the kidney.
65. Sugar can damage the pancreas.
66. Sugar can increase the body’s fluid retention.
67. Sugar is the number one enemy of the bowel movement.
68. Sugar can cause myopia (nearsightedness).
69. Sugar can compromise the lining of the capillaries.
70. Sugar can make tendons more brittle.
71. Sugar can cause headaches, including migraines.
72. Sugar plays a role in pancreatic cancer in women.
73. Sugar can adversely affect children’s grades in school.
74. Sugar can cause depression.
75. Sugar increases the risk of gastric cancer.
76. Sugar can cause dyspepsia (indigestion).
77. Sugar can increase the risk of developing gout.
78. Sugar can increase the levels of glucose in the blood much higher than complex carbohydrates in a glucose tolerance test can.
79. Sugar reduces learning capacity.
80. Sugar can cause two blood proteins – albumin and lipoproteins – to function less effectively, which may reduce the body’s ability to handle fat and cholesterol.
81. Sugar can contribute to Alzheimer’s disease.
82. Sugar can cause platelet adhesiveness, which causes blood clots.
83. Sugar can cause hormonal imbalance – some hormones become underactive and others become overactive.
84. Sugar can lead to the formation of kidney stones.
85. Sugar can cause free radicals and oxidative stress.
86. Sugar can lead to biliary tract cancer.
87. Sugar increases the risk of pregnant adolescents delivering a small-for-gestational-age (SGA) infant.
88. Sugar can lead to a substantial decrease the in the length of pregnancy among adolescents.
89. Sugar slows food’s travel time through the gastrointestinal tract.
90. Sugar increases the concentration of bile acids in stool and bacterial enzymes in the colon, which can modify bile to produce cancer-causing compounds and colon cancer.
91. Sugar increases estradiol (the most potent form of naturally occurring estrogen) in men.
92. Sugar combines with and destroys phosphatase, a digestive enzyme, which makes digestion more difficult.
93. Sugar can be a risk factor for gallbladder cancer.
94. Sugar is an addictive substance.
95. Sugar can be intoxicating, similar to alcohol.
96. Sugar can aggravate premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
97. Sugar can decrease emotional stability.
98. Sugar promotes excessive food intake in obese people.
99. Sugar can worsen the symptoms of children with attention deficit disorder (ADD).
(Apparently we start over at #1 on our way to #143!)
1. Sugar can slow the ability of the adrenal glands to function.
2. Sugar can cut off oxygen to the brain when given to people intravenously.
3. Sugar is a risk factor for lung cancer.
4. Sugar increases the risk of polio.
5. Sugar can cause epileptic seizures.
6. Sugar can increase systolic blood pressure (pressure when the heart is contracting).
7. Sugar can induce cell death.
8. Sugar can increase the amount of food that you eat.
9. Sugar can cause antisocial behavior in juvenile delinquents.
10. Sugar can lead to prostate cancer.
11. Sugar dehydrates newborns.
12. Sugar can cause women to give birth to babies with low birth weight.
13. Sugar is associated with a worse outcome of schizophrenia.
14. Sugar can raise homocysteine levels in the bloodstream.
15. Sugar increases the risk of breast cancer.
16. Sugar is a risk factor in small intestine cancer.
17. Sugar can cause laryngeal cancer.
18. Sugar induces salt and water retention.
19. Sugar can contribute to mild memory loss.
20. Sugar water, when given to children shortly after birth, results in those children preferring sugar water to regular water throughout childhood.
21. Sugar causes constipation.
22. Sugar can cause brain decay in pre-diabetic and diabetic women.
23. Sugar can increase the risk of stomach cancer.
24. Sugar can cause metabolic syndrome.
25. Sugar increases neural tube defects in embryos when it is consumed by pregnant women.
26. Sugar can cause asthma.
27. Sugar increases the chances of getting irritable bowl syndrome.
28. Sugar can affect central reward systems.
29. Sugar can cause cancer of the rectum.
30. Sugar can cause endometrial cancer.
31. Sugar can cause renal (kidney) cell cancer.
32. Sugar can cause liver tumors.
33. Sugar can increase inflammatory markers in the bloodstreams of overweight people.
34. Sugar plays a role in the cause and the continuation of acne.
35. Sugar can ruin the sex life of both men and women by turning off the gene that controls the sex hormones.
36. Sugar can cause fatigue, moodiness, nervousness, and depression.
37. Sugar can make many essential nutrients less available to cells.
38. Sugar can increase uric acid in blood.
39. Sugar can lead to higher C-peptide concentrations.
40. Sugar causes inflammation.
41. Sugar can cause diverticulitis, a small bulging sac pushing outward from the colon wall that is inflamed.
42. Sugar can decrease testosterone production.
43. Sugar impairs spatial memory.
44. Sugar can cause cataracts.
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16 thoughts on “My Christmas Anti-Gift to You: 143 Reasons That Sugar Destroys Your Health.”
I think it should be made clear what you mean with sugar. Do you just mean white sugar? All refined carbohydrates have the same effect be in white rice, white flour, white sugar, high fructose corn syrup etc.
I also recommend the book “Good Calories, Bad Calories” its a wonderful read but it has > 500 pages. It also contains a great summery of the conclusions on page 454.
although there are only few facts that are true in this list, the fact that nancy uses the word “can” lead to, “can” cause, etc in 90% on the listed items, this means that there is NOT enough research or studies to back up what she is claiming.
13. Sugar CAN lead to chromium deficiency.
16. Sugar causes copper deficiency.
in #13, well it’s not a 100% fact. in #16, it is supposedly true.
ben: i’d be curious if you could forward this to her, and listen to her in january’s podcast.
Ace, I’ll be bringing ALL these comments to Nancy’s attention during my interview with her…
I do believe you have ‘one word’ that should be eliminated from almost everyone of your reasons for for not eating sugar…. That is the word “CAN”
I believe it is more or an absolute than a maybe.
Thanks for sharing it.
Glad to hear that she will be on the podcast because I would like to hear more. I read this list on the Hammer Nutrition website and find some of her claims a bit hard to believe,since correlation does not mean causation, but I don’t feel like digging through the research myself.
Love the podcast, I look forward every week for the cast to come out. I do agree, very much, with the health affects on sugar. Unfortunately, I have to disagree with you in a lot of what’s listed. For example, #25, “Sugar can lead to alcoholism.” This is referenced from a 1977 study? Many may argue it’s…that leads to alcoholism. If anyone reads the references, they’ll see that some are 20, 30, and over 40 years old.
Bear in mind that the author of this article will be coming on the show in January…but I am not the author!!!
On the one hand, all things taken in moderation while not necessarily good for you at least won’t do irreparable harm. On the other hand I’m not sure it’s possible to consume sugar “in moderation”, not in the standard “Western diet”. There are so many sugars under different names (sucrose, glucose, fructose, corn syrup and HFCS) that portion control is essentially impossible. For a in-depth explanation of many of the “143” try Gary Taubes’ “Good Calories, Bad Calories”. You may never want to eat sugar again.
Hi Ben. I was excited when I received the email link to this list. I’ve been completely free of unnatural sugars since Halloween, and I feel great! However, I really have to question many of the statements in your list. The ones that I really have to disagree with deal with sugar and juvenile delinquency. I’m a teacher of young children, and have studied juvenile behavior for years. While I agree that sugar is not good for anyone, I have to disagree that it leads to misbehavior, delinquency, and ADD (a term completely over-used) in children. Most misbehaviors and forms of delinquency are caused by parenting, societal factors, and kids being kids, not sugar. In fact, if a child or parent ever blames poor choice behavior on sugar, I’d have to laugh.
Aside from all that, thank you for your hard work and dedication to helping people better their lives! While I can’t agree with the sugar-related childhood behavior statements, I do appreciate the advice that you give related to health and triathlon training.
thanks, that was really sweet.
I’m not drinking hot chocolate as I read your post, but eating a magnesium rich piece of fudge ;)! I’m printing this out and putting it on the fridge and asking my kids to read it when they ask for sugary foods. Hopefully they’ll loose their desire by the time they get to #143! Take a look at National Geographic “Human Footprint” documentary to get a visual of how much sugar (eggs, milk, etc) Americans consume. It’s too much & at the expense of other nutrients. I would have to read all the studies to see what amounts of sugar & what types lead to all these problems, so I agree with the other Ben regarding causal relationships. Maybe Dr. Appleton could clarify that.
I think this article is silly. Of course sugar isn’t good for you, but with so many variables, i don’t we can say sugar exclusively causes all those things. Basically sugar is behind everything that could happen in your body. Sorry, but this information is not helpful.
Ben, we’re going to have Dr. Nancy Appleton on the show in a few weeks…would you mind if I read her your statement and got her thoughts?