Cazinc is a collective of Melbourne bloggers that explores culture in many forms – from fashion and style, travel, lifestyle and wellbeing, to the culinary and decorative arts.

 

The Hidden Ingredient Of Mass Destruction

The Hidden Ingredient Of Mass Destruction

WARNING: This food/drink may contain traces of sugar  

Over the last few weeks, I have developed a slight obsession with the adverse effect that hidden refined sugar has on our bodies. 

I always knew that refined sugar is bad for humans and I think it is blatantly obvious to most that cake and chocolate aren’t the greatest food choice. But what I was about to learn was that sugar goes far beyond that. 

You see ‘sugar’ has multiple nicknames some you may recognise and others that are another version of the English language. Here are just a few to give you an idea of the kind of nicknames:

-    Brown sugar
-    Mannitol
-    Molasses
-    Caramel
-    Dextrose
-    Treacle
-    Raw sugar
-    Lactose
-    Carob syrup
-    Barley malt 

A few weeks ago I purchased “That Sugar Book” by Damon Gameau. You may recognise the title of the book from “That Sugar Film”, produced and directed by the author of the book. 

You will be shocked at the amount of sugar in healthy items. Photo: Chapter Friday

You will be shocked at the amount of sugar in healthy items.

Photo: Chapter Friday

Both the book and the film share Damon’s journey of discovering the damage that sugar can create in our bodies and how quickly the damage occurs. 

Damon conducted an experiment on himself where he would have to consume 40 teaspoons of sugar every day (the average amount that Australians consume every day) for 60 days. NOTE: At this point that David had not had refined sugar for three years and hadn’t consumed alcohol or caffeine for five years. 

The 40 teaspoons of sugar had to be ‘hidden’ sugar found in foods that were perceivably ‘healthy’ foods and beverages such as fruit juice, breakfast cereals, muesli bars, ‘low fat’ milk and yoghurt. 

In just 60 days of the experiment, Damon gained 10 centimetres of visceral fat around his belly (NOTE: Visceral fat refers to fat stored around internal organs such as the liver, pancreas and intestines) and put on 8.5 kilos. There had been a massive deterioration in the health of his liver, he had a dangerous amount of fat in his bloodstream and was in the early stages of potential heart disease. 

The good news is that after just a couple of months of returning to his regular sugar-free diet he had managed to lose the weight he had gained, and his blood tests revealed he was back to his healthy self before conducting the experiment. He no longer had a fatty liver, no more heart-disease risks and a significant reduction in visceral fat. 

The book is broken down into four parts:

1.    The experiment: 60 days of sugar
2.    The science: And what sugar did to him
3.    The good times: And how he got healthy again
4.     The recipes 

This book transformed the way that I look at the “healthy” and “low fat” food that they sell in the supermarket. I became a smarter shopper and have been able to encourage those around me to cut down on their hidden sugar consumption. 

The visuals in the book (particularly in the science part) made it really easy to understand and physically see what sugar does to the body. NOTE: If you want a more detailed version of the science check out “Sweet Poison” written by David Gillespie (I am currently reading this but it is quite challenging and definitely something to read if you have some time and patience). 

The recipes included to help people break their sugar addiction are really easy to follow and use foods that are easy to get a hold of (they are also super delicious). 

Both Caz and I could not recommend the book highly enough! You never know, hidden sugar could be the thing that is preventing you from losing that excess weight that just won’t budge. 

While we are on the subject of sugar I thought I would draw your attention to an article that was published by the Herald Sun titled ‘Melbourne surgeons forced to remove rotten teeth from children due to sugary diets’. 

The article revealed that more than 50 Melbourne children under the age of five had to have at least half their teeth surgically removed in one year due to their sugary diets. 

It really puts into perspective just how much of an impact sugar has both the diets of adults and children and how important it is that we get a handle on the issue now before it is too late. 

Written by Angelica.

Angelica is a regular writer for Cazinc Blog, writing health and food articles.  Follow this amazing woman on Instagram here.

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