Your immune system is the first line of defence when resisting infection and illness. It can be affected by your diet. In particular, sugar has a damaging effect ton your body, your health and your immunity. This blog will outline what you can do to improve the function of your immune system by reducing your sugar intake.
How you can reduce your sugar intake
Perhaps not the first thing you would think about when boosting your immunity. Sugar is incredibly detrimental not only to your health but also to your immunity. This blog will outline why sugar affects your health. Your immune system is complicated because it is not one single biological function it is made up of an array of chemical responses that take place in your cells and organs throughout your body, that work together to protect the body to defend it against infections, it attacks germs and helps keep you healthy. White blood cells, play an important role in the immune system and chew up invading organisms and others help the body remember the invaders and destroy them. When the body senses foreign substances the immune system works to get rid of them.
How does sugar affect your immune system?
The effect of eating or drinking too much sugar affects your immunity because it curbs or reduces the efficacy of your immune system cells that attack bacteria. Interestingly something as innocent as a few sugary drinks can have an effect that lasts for at least a few hours. Sugary drinks can be anything from fizzy pop to orange juice. The sugar in these drinks can affect the cells in your immune system that target bacteria, sugar affects the way your white blood cells attack bacteria
Sugar has no nutritional value
A diet that is high in processed foods means a swift reduction in nutrients, processed food reduced the vitamin and minerals that your body requires. A longer-term nutrient deficiency can increase your risk level when warding off infection. The food items with high levels of refined sugar are usually nutritionally obsolete.
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How does sugar increase inflammation?
Sugar triggers low-grade inflammation in the body which contributes to diseases that are chronic in nature, things as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. When you have chronic inflammation, your body’s inflammatory response can eventually start damaging healthy cells, tissues, and organs. Over time, this can lead to DNA damage, tissue death, and internal scarring. All of these are linked to the development of several diseases
How does sugar affect your brain?
Overconsumption of sugar is increasingly being linked to brain-related health issues such as depression, learning disorders, memory problems, and overeating. It impairs memory and your learning skills. In a 2012 study on rats, researchers at UCLA found that a diet high in fructose hindered learning and memory by literally slowing down brain activity. Rats who over-consumed fructose had damaged synaptic activity in the brain, meaning that communication among brain cells was impaired. Don’t miss: Is your body crying out for help?
Heavy sugar intake caused the rats to develop insulin resistance. Insulin helps brain cells communicate better and form stronger memories. So when insulin levels in the brain are lowered as the result of excess sugar consumption, thinking can be impaired. It’s a risk factor for cognitive decline and dementia.
A growing body of research suggests that a sugar-heavy diet can increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. A 2013 study found that insulin resistance and blood glucose levels are linked with a greater risk for developing neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s.
How does sugar increases cravings?
When you eat sugar, insulin is released from your pancreas to stop sugar levels from rising too high in your bloodstream. The sugar’s taken to your cells for energy production but if you’re not burning off much energy because you’re working at your desk, watching TV or sitting in your car, insulin will take it to your fat stores to be stored.
The release of too much insulin and sugar being stored away is you feel hungry and crave glucose to replenish and refuel. It makes you hungry and it makes you hungry for more sweet stuff. It creates a cycle of crazy cravings.
When you eat sugar, just like any food, it activates your taste receptors. Then, signals are sent to the brain, lighting up reward pathways and causing a surge of feel-good hormones, like dopamine, to be released. Basically, sugar hijacks the brain’s reward pathway leading you to seek more and more of that dopamine hit. Therefore you crave more sugar, which stimulates your brain’s reward system.
Satiating that craving with a piece of chocolate now and then is pleasurable, but continuous stimulation can lead to loss of control, cravings, and increased tolerance to sugar. I am sure you have noticed on holiday in the past the more you eat sugary treats the more you crave them. It takes a while to readjust.
Does sugar increase stress hormone?
If your blood sugar balance is out of alignment that causes inflammation in your system and triggers the release of cortisol, your main stress hormone. Sugar makes you stressed and stress is a trigger for your flushes, anxiety, disrupted sleep, brain fog and night sweats.
Sugar makes you depressed and anxious, for example, you may have noticed that eating a doughnut or drinking coke or perhaps even a large glass of orange juice will cause blood sugar levels to spike and then crash and you may notice that feeling of anxiety as that happens. Or perhaps moody or even depressed when this crash happens.
Sugar or high carb foods can affect the neurotransmitters that help keep your mood stable. Eating sugar stimulates the release of the mood-boosting neurotransmitter serotonin. Constantly over-activating the serotonin pathways can deplete our limited supplies of this neurotransmitter, which then contributes to symptoms of depression.
How can you give up sugar?
If you’re ready to give up sugar, great! Cutting all sugar out of your life is next to impossible, so the trick is to lower your glycemic load. Glycemic load is an estimate of how much the carbohydrates in a certain food or meal will raise your blood sugar after you eat it.
Ideally, you want your blood sugar and insulin levels to remain relatively level all day so that your body uses glucose (your fuel source) efficiently. You want to be a fat-burning machine!
Simple refined sugars cause spikes in blood sugar and insulin. But complex carbohydrates, fibre, protein and healthy fats promote more gradual increases and decreases in blood sugar and insulin, lowering the glycemic load and keeping things nice and steady in your body. There are so many sweet sugary treats available in the form of biscuits, cakes and chocolates but did you know sugar’s hidden in a few less obvious places too. You can find sugar in healthy looking cereal bars, low-fat foods, gluten-free processed foods, breakfast cereals, milk, bread and of course alcohol.
Don’t miss: Find out more about how to become the best version of you: leaner, fitter and shapelier you
3 simple ways to reduce your sugar
- Add in more veggies to your plate instead of the carb choice
- Read food labels carefully and look out for ingredients that end in -ose. These are all different names for sugar.
- One swap at a time ie reduce your 11am coffee and cake fix, or your end of the day crisps and telly binge. Work on one change at a time.
Plus eating more fruits and vegetables, which are rich in nutrients like vitamins C and E, beta-carotene and zinc will also boost your immunity. Go for a wide variety of brightly coloured fruits and vegetables, including:
- berries, citrus fruits, kiwi, apples, red grapes, kale, onions, spinach, sweet potatoes, and carrots.
Other foods which are great for your immune system include fresh garlic, which may help fight viruses and bacteria.
The Gentle Reset – 6 weeks reset your mind and detox your body
If you’re not feeling great, full of vitality and hitting your weight goals then you’ve probably had a few glaring gaps……so with that in mind, I’d like to invite you to work with me inside my membership community on The Gentle Reset.
Working with me inside the membership, I’ll help you identify the bad habits that are accruing, then give you the resources you need to add in some great habits using coaching, video tutorials, cheat sheets, exercise videos, group coaching, and the all-important buddy-up, supportive motivation.
And you get the opportunity to pick my brain and get personal feedback on your nutrition every single week in our group coaching session. My Group Coaching programme is based on a 6 weeks course that will focus on your health and wellbeing. Inside the 6 weeks: The Gentle Reset you will be able to reset your mind and detox your body and be provided with the support you need to get a healthy lifestyle in place.
A big part of that means that you will have nourishing eating habits that will give you more energy and more motivation as well as the appropriate levels of exercise Join here: The 6 weeks Gentle Reset
What sort of results can you expect?
Here are a few examples of what my clients have achieved so far:
Marketing business owner Charlotte is frank: “Your support, great advice, laughter and tough love have changed my approach to food…as a busy mum of 2 teenagers and consumer brand marketer & business owner, I’ve changed my entire approach to food and prioritising my own health” Read more about Charlotte’s journey here
Find out more about Charlotte’s story and others click here: success stories click here
How much does it cost?
Your investment is currently £415 but this is for a limited time, the price will be increasing soon – click here to grab the best possible price
BE QUICK this programme, along with all my programmes will be increasing in price very soon > Click here to find out why I am raising my prices But you’ll also discover how you can grab a place before my prices go up, but you will need to be fast.
Gorgeous is your journey of discovery
PS. If you have read enough and you know that this is for you, and you are ready to discover the next stage of your journey – then click here to join my next round