Obesity: everyone knows it increases your chances of heart disease, but did you know it can also lead to increased risk of heart disease for your children, too? According to research presented at the American Heart Association 2014 Scientific Sessions in Chicago, children of overweight or obese mothers had a 90% higher risk of cardiovascular disease or death. Obesity can also lead to higher risk of certain cancers, as well as of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (the most prevalent form of liver disease in the US), and of sleep apnea.
While it’s easy to acknowledge that obesity is a dangerous and increasingly prevalent disease, it can be harder to know how to tackle it. We all want to be healthy and to help our families be healthy too, but it can seem increasingly difficult to source foods that aren’t full of hidden sugars and fats; anyone who has tried to cut processed sugar out of their diet knows it’s not easy, let alone when it comes to providing tasty crowd-pleasers for your whole family!
One way to improve your diet and help reduce your risk of obesity is to replace your intake of processed sugars with unrefined ones. While both kinds of sugar contain the same calories, the way your body processes them is different. Refined sugars, which are found in foods such as biscuits, cakes and sweets, as well as lots of savoury foods too, come from sugar cane or sugar beets which have been processed to remove the fibre. The body breaks down these sugars rapidly, which causes a spike in insulin levels. Insulin removes surplus glucose from the blood and lowers the speed at which the body burns fat – this causes fat to be stored rather than used for energy, and leads to feelings of lethargy and hunger, and cravings for more sugar.
Natural sugars, especially when combined with fibre, are broken down more slowly, which means you feel fuller for longer after eating them. That’s why the warm intermingling flavours of our pure fruit syrups, as well as honey and sesame are both delicious and a Savvy choice for you and your family!
Key words: sugar problems, natural sugar, no added sugar, exercise, health, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, processed, refined.