When we think of sugar, we tend to think of a bowl of white sweet crystals in a bowl.
The reality is that sugar is everywhere. From your pasta sauce to your biscuits and even your canned tuna is filled with sugar.
Many people rely on quick, processed foods for meals and snacks. Since these products often contain added sugar, it makes up a large proportion of their daily calorie intake.
In fact, in the latter half of the 20th century, several governments promoted the growth of sugar and other carbs through various incentives and subsidies because addition of sugar made it possible to reduce the costs of making food.
Several studies now suggest that sugar has multiple ill effects. However, it can cause a lot of damage to mental and physical health for men.
Here are 5 reasons why men should ditch sugar.
Large amounts of added sugars reduce high density lipoprotein levels and raise triglyceride levels. These two factors are fundamental to the onset of heart disease.
The American Cancer Society states that prostate cancer is the second most common form of cancer in the United States and the second highest cause for mortality next to lung cancer. Sugar is a major source of energy for cancerous cells, and cancer thrives when excess sugar is consumed.
You need energy to keep up a healthy sex drive. If you're bogging down your body with energy that doesn't last, it affects your sex drive. A sugar high is short term and not sustainable. And the speed of the high and the low totally adversely affects with your natural systems.
Men with blood sugar imbalances have trouble getting or maintaining erections. Research has even shown that sugar is a major cause of erectile dysfunction, mostly in diabetic men.
While a healthy diet can help improve your mood, a diet high in added sugar and processed foods may increase your chances of developing depression. Research has shown that blood sugar swings, neurotransmitter dysregulation and inflammation may all be reasons for sugar’s detrimental impact on mental health.
A study following 8,000 people for 22 years showed that men who consumed 67 grams or more of sugar per day were 23% more likely to develop depression than men who ate less than 40 grams per day.
A study following 8,000 people for 22 years showed that men who consumed 67 grams or more of sugar per day were 23% more likely to develop depression than men who ate less than 40 grams per day (28Trusted Source).
Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Prolonged high-sugar consumption drives resistance to insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that regulates blood sugar levels.
Insulin resistance causes blood sugar levels to rise and strongly increases your risk of diabetes.
A population study comprising over 175 countries found that the risk of developing diabetes grew by 1.1% for every 150 calories of sugar, or about one can of soft drink, consumed per day.
(The author is a lawyer turned business intelligence consultant turned chef. He also designs weekly and monthly meal plans for clients and conducts baking and cooking workshops.)