Typically, when we think of foods that raise cholesterol, we think of those high in saturated fat. While it is true that these foods, along with those heavy in trans fats, do raise bad (LDL) cholesterol levels more than others, they are far from the sole element to consider.
According to the American Heart Association, the average American consumes 20 tablespoons of sugar each day (AHA). Of course, intake rates differ from person to person, but there is no denying that these empty calories have an impact on our health.
Research: Sugar and Cardiovascular Link
One study is widely touted as proof of sugar’s effects on cholesterol levels. Sugar consumption was found to raise many markers for cardiovascular disease, according to the researchers.
They discovered that persons who consumed more added sugars had lower levels of “good” cholesterol, also known as high-density lipoprotein (HDL). HDL actually helps to transfer additional “bad” cholesterol, or low-density lipoprotein (LDL), to the liver. As a result, we want our HDL levels to be high.They also discovered that these participants had greater triglyceride levels. Either of these variables can raise your chances of developing heart disease.
Triglycerides are a form of fat that rises after eating. Your body stores calories that you aren’t using for energy right now. When you require energy in between meals, these triglycerides are released from fat cells and circulate in the blood. If you eat more than you burn and drink excessive amounts of sweets, fat, or alcohol, you are more likely to have high triglyceride levels.
Triglycerides, like cholesterol, do not dissolve in blood. They circulate throughout your circulatory system, where they can induce artery wall damage and atherosclerosis, or artery hardening. This increases the risk of stroke, heart attack, and cardiovascular disease.
Sugar Consumption Control
To improve health, the World Health Organization recommends getting no more than 10% of your calories from sugar, or as little as 5%. Similarly, the AHA recommends that women consume no more than 100 calories per day from added sugars, and men consume no more than 150 calories per day – that is, 6 and 9 teaspoons, respectively. Unfortunately, that is significantly less than what they think the majority of Americans are now receiving.
Learn how to identify sugar on food labels. Sugar isn’t always labelled as such on food packaging. Corn syrup, honey, malt sugar, molasses, syrup, corn sweetener, and any words ending in “ose” (such as glucose and fructose) are examples of added sugars.
Look for worthwhile substitutes. Not all sugar alternatives are created equal, and some carry risks of their own. Unlike agave and honey, which still include sugar molecules, stevia is a plant-based sweetener that is a real sugar substitute. Start using organic stevia products that contain natural sweet components to reduce your risk of heart disease.
Sugar consumption should be monitored in the same way that alcohol, calories, and saturated fats are. There’s nothing wrong with the odd treat, but the consequences of sugar can be detrimental to your heart.
You already know how cholesterol and sugar are linked; check our previous blog Carbs & Sugar: Story Of Deception to understand more about the history of carbs and sugar.
If you’re looking for the greatest organic Stevia products, Sugar Fighter is the way to go.