I was trying to think what to write about today when the supermarket mailer arrived in my letterbox. On flicking through it, I found it pretty concerning to find that page after page featured ‘non-food’ items. Stuff we just don’t need and mostly should not be putting into our bodies.
These items must be pretty popular, or the supermarket wouldn’t be wasting valuable advertising space on promoting them so heavily. Because it is processed and non-food, it is relatively cheap and thus attractive to shoppers.
Here’s a sample of what is contained in the first few pages of the mailer.
- “Energy” drinks
- Fizzy drinks, sugary sparking water (total of 5 x ads for these)
- Flavoured milk
- So called breakfast drinks (are you seeing a trend here in high sugar liquids?!)
- Crinkle cut chips and other types of chips (4 x ads)
- Packets of processed ham
- High sugar cereal
- Processed cheese packs
- Bags of lollies
- High sugar muesli bars and biscuits
- Flavoured popcorn
- Share bags of treat bars, plus full size bars of chocolate
- 2 minute noodles (don’t get me started on those!)
- Jelly cups with fruit
- Frozen pizzas, cheesecakes, frozen chips, ice blocks, ice cream, etc, etc.
Oh my goodness. How much of the above is Real Food? Food that comes as nature offered it, without additives and preservatives of some kind? Without loads of added sugar.
At a time, when as a nation we are getting fatter and unhealthier, we need to seriously be looking at what we are eating and what we are giving our kids, the next generation, to eat.
Sugar is Sugar
Unless you have been living under a rock, you must know that sugar and simple carbohydrates are one of the biggest causes of weight gain.
Sugar is sugar.
Don’t be fooled by ‘no refined sugar’ on labels. Many products are promoted as ‘sugar free’ when they contain dried fruit, maple sugar, rice malt syrup, or some other type of natural sweetener. Read the ingredient lists on the packages you buy. Sugar has over 56 different names and just because you don’t see the word sugar listed on the label, it doesn’t mean there isn’t a form of it in the product.
Our bodies can only handle about 1 teaspoon worth of sugar in our blood stream at any one time without serious risk. That means that any additional carbs (which all break down to sugar) must be dealt with by the body, quickly and efficiently.
The hormone that deals with sugar is insulin. Insulin forces the cells to take up the excess sugar, whether they need it or not. If they begin to resist this process, the body releases more insulin in an effort to force the cells to let the sugar in.
Over time, this constantly increased level of insulin results in the pancreas effectively shutting down, and this is Type 2 Diabetes. You can no longer control the amount of sugar in your blood, because your pancreas can't keep up with the demand. This doesn’t happen overnight, it generally has a long lead in period. Too many simple carbohydrates, excess fat around (and inside) the abdomen and a sedentary lifestyle contribute to this state.
These are things that can be changed if you make lifestyle modifications.
I would highly recommend asking your doctor to have your blood glucose level checked if you are overweight and sedentary, or if you carry excess fat in the abdominal area. Even if you are over 45 years old and have never had it checked, speak to your doctor. It is much better to find out if your blood sugar is heading towards the Type 2 diabetes level and be able to take steps to prevent going on to that dangerous state of health. By the time you have Type 2 diabetes your body is in a state of inflammation and inflammation not only leads to diabetes, but also to heart issues, cancer and other health problems.
What is the best way to get your blood sugar levels down and your insulin working effectively?
Take these basic steps.
- Lose excess bodyfat by following a lower carbohydrate diet where the carbs are coming from the right types of complex carbs.
- Reduce the amount of fruit in your diet and step up the servings of low carb, fibrous veggies.
- Exercise regularly – the recommendation to help with blood sugar levels is 30 minutes daily.
If you need help with a plan to help you eat better, please get in touch. I would love to help.