Tag Archives: health

Great New Sugar Science Site

This is a wonderful site to check in with, and get notices from: http://www.sugarscience.org

This site is staffed by several doctors of one type or another, all interested in working to help get us off the dangerous drug that is Sugar.

Spring at Last: Brings New Focus

We in the northeastern USA have gotten through a strange winter all predicted by climate change science a few years ago. But now, the snow is gone, and it is springtime. Like most creatures in springtime, I have the normal animal urges to get out, plant, be productive, and feel connected with the great cycle of the seasons. My beloved and I were both down with some version of cold-bronchitis-flu for most of a month, and that only increased my usual winter ennui. So just now feeling focused, wanting to do more, like reconnecting via this blog. I have been storing up a few possible posts to share, and hope to be more regular for a while.

Blogs are a bit like diets; there is an initial excitement and intensity, then you slowly move to a kind of burnout phase when your interest wanes. But what does not wane is my absolute belief that our people are being made ill, and dying of diseases, caused by sugars, starches, and most artificial sweeteners. Death by diet. Our big-agri business has co-opted the government and medical establishment into supporting a way of eating that is not only unhealthy and fattening, but ultimately dangerous. A look at the western diet prior to the 1950s and now is evidence enough; a look at the change in obesity and diabetes rates during that time is appalling. Take a look at the stats found at these sites, more than enough to be disturbing:

http://www.diabetesandenvironment.org/home/incidence

http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB9043-1/index1.html

http://win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/PDFs/stat904z.pdf

http://authoritynutrition.com/11-graphs-that-show-what-is-wrong-with-modern-diet/

http://mpkb.org/_detail/home/pathogenesis/mortality.gif?id=home%3Apathogenesis%3Aepidemiology

I am not a person who buys into conspiracy theories (they take a level of cooperation almost impossible for any group of people), and I don’t believe what happened in our western food realm was an conspiracy, except the ultimate one ruled by money. The same issues were at play in the cigarette industry for decades; not until there was no denying the obvious fact that smoking was killing people in droves did anything finally get done to show the public that tobacco kills.

Here is a good interview with a soda representative that shows it is hard for an abuser to defend his/her abuse: https://youtu.be/g4nTuSKEJug

I have a couple new recipes to add to my recipe blog, so take a look there.

Yours in the burgeoning of spring,

Nan aka Sugarbaby

Losing the Taste for Sweet

I would have said at one time that it was impossible I would lose my taste for sweets, but to my surprise, after the last few years of very low carb eating, my taste for sweet has vastly diminished. Last night I was out to dinner with friends, I didn’t give the bread basket a second thought, then a dessert sampler was ordered for the table by one of my friends. I would have declined dessert if we had ordered individually. But, my friends are not on my low sugar-starch diet, and I don’t make a big deal when out with others.

So this big dessert platter with four desserts was put in the middle of the table. At one time I would have dived in and had my fair share, but instead I nabbed the strawberry settled on some whipped cream, had one tiny bite each of two of the desserts, an apple tart and a sticky pudding, and had no desire for more, indeed it was a ‘ho-hum’ experience. I just had no desire for any more. At the time I was not thinking much about it, but when I got home I realized what a different experience I just had from the years when I had to have my very own dessert in order to enjoy the meal.

So, take heart if you are still struggling with avoiding sweets. By maintaining good habits at home–no sweets live here–and avoiding most situations that are personal triggers, like convenience stores were for me, then given enough time, months to a couple years, we do gradually lose our super-sweetened palates and find pleasure in much healthier options. I make pumpkin custards, almond flour cup cakes, mousses, etc.,  sweetened only with a little bit of liquid stevia, and enjoy such treats as much or more than the old heavy sugar desserts.

All the negative issues with weight, inflammation in the cells, brain fog, and other such bad reactions to sugars-starches-artificial sweeteners, are enough to keep me on the path of good health which for me is anti-sugar.

Even when you fall off the wagon, and we all have, in the early days especially, take heart–it will get easier.

When you no longer feel deprived, you no longer want what is bad for you. To get to that point requires both habit changes and a change of mindset, but the good news is that it can be done.

Yours in learning,

Nan aka Sugarbaby

Low Blood Sugar May Protect Memory

This article has some good insights about the problems with elevated blood sugar, which is sadly rampant these days.

Aging Well: Keeping Blood Sugar Low May Protect Memory

by Allison Aubrey, NPR

October 25, 2013

There’s a growing body of evidence linking elevated blood sugar to memory problems. For instance, earlier this year, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that higher glucose may be a risk factor for dementia, even among people without type 2 diabetes.

So the question is, at what point does the risk of cognitive decline set in?

Or in other words, should we be aware of creeping blood sugar, even before it gets to levels that doctors call pre-diabetes?

Well, researchers, writing this week in the journal Neurology, have some new data that suggest that even modest increases in blood sugar among people in their 50s, 60s and 70s can have a negative influence on memory.

The study included 141 healthy older people141 healthy older people141 healthy older people, all of whom had blood sugar in the normal range. All of the participants were given recall tests where they were read a list of 15 words and then asked to repeat back as many as they could remember.

The researchers found that if a person’s hemoglobin A1C (the AIC test is a common blood test that reflects a person’s average blood sugar level over a two-to-three month period) went from 5 percent, which is in the normal range, up to 5.6 percent, which is edging closer to what doctors classify as pre-diabetes, this was associated with recalling fewer words.

This association suggests the effect isn’t huge. But researchers says it’s significant.

So, what’s actually happening in the brain when blood sugar levels are chronically elevated?

Study author Agnes Floel of Charite University Medicine in Berlin says there may be a couple of things at play. It’s possible that blood vessel effects can damage memory. “Elevated blood sugar levels damage small and large vessels in the brain, leading to decreased blood and nutrient flow to brain cells,” explains Floel.

Another explanation: Elevated blood sugar “may impair the functioning of brain areas like the hippocampus, a structure particularly relevant for memory,” Floel says.

“When you’re making a decision or trying to retrieve [information from your memory], the hippocampus requires a lot of glucose,” explains Gail Musen of the Joslin Diabetes Center.

But when glucose levels rise in the body, it may lead to a disruption in the transport of glucose through the blood-brain barrier to the hippocampus. And this may impact the integrity of the hippocampus, according to the findings of the new study.

So it seems that when blood sugar in the body rises, it may be “more difficult to get that glucose to the hippocampus,” Musen explains.

We should point out that it’s possible for blood sugar to go dangerously low, a condition known ashypoglycemia. This is most commonly an issue for people being treated for diabetes with insulin.

So, what can we do to help control blood sugar and keep it in the healthy range?

What we eat is important. “Consuming a diet rich in fiber, vegetables, fruit, fish, and whole-grain products” is recommended, Floel wrote to us in an email.

And there’s exercise too: “Exercising regularly is absolutely associated with lower blood sugars, on average, and it’s also associated with brain health,” says Paul Crane of the University of Washington.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

http://minnesota.publicradio.org/features/npr.php?id=240784956