Sugar and inflammation aren’t just related, they are married. In Biblical terms God refers to marriage in Mark 10:8 proclaiming “Two Shall Become One.” Meaning the husband and wife are no longer two entities but one entity. They no longer function individually but together. Sugar and inflammation work in the same manner; except their marriage is highly dysfunctional.
Let’s start with inflammation.
Inflammation is a key part of the immune response and as we now hear more and more, it’s the root cause of all disease. Diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, autoimmune disorders, and cancer are linked back to chronic and invisible inflammation that lies just below the body’s pain threshold. But inflammation is also to blame for these common health challenges: body aches and pains, congestion, irregular elimination, indigestion, skin outbreaks, frequent infections, advanced aging, arthritis, weight gain, and weight loss resistance.
That’s stuff that’s effecting just about all of us!
Now let’s talk about sugar.
By sugar I mean table sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, honey (even raw), maple syrup, corn sweetener, dextrose, glucose, fructose, and any other word that ends in an “ose”, barley malt, rice syrup, liquid cane sugar, concentrated fruit juice and others. Don’t be fooled by the name organic when it applies to sugar either. Sugar is sugar, organic or not.
When we consume sugar over and over, we weaken our body tissues, our white blood cells, and our immune system. When our body tissues and immune system are weak, we can not fend off foreign invaders. Not only are we now susceptible to degenerative diseases but also infectious diseases. And when the illnesses and/or injuries start to set in….and they eventually will….sugar and inflammation go straight from dating to the altar. And the marriage is sealed with a big inflammatory state kiss.
The Good News is inflammation can separate from sugar and finalize the divorce with some focus, determination, and the right information. And I feel pretty safe saying God doesn’t hate this divorce.
Strategies to Calm Inflammation
A growing body of evidence links particular foods and eating patterns with lower levels of inflammatory biomarkers. Both epidemiological studies and intervention trials support a link between diet and a reduced risk of many chronic diseases, and experts believe that the diet-inflammation connection might be one explanation. Diets high in refined starches, sugars, saturated fats, and trans fats and low in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and omega-3 fatty acids appear to turn on the inflammatory response. But a diet rich in whole foods, including healthful carbohydrates and fat and protein sources, along with regular exercise and not smoking, seems to cool down inflammation.
If you are really struggling with inflammation, you can even take it one step further and do a 2 week “anti-inflammatory detox diet.” This not only involves avoiding the sugars I mentioned above, but also avoiding the No Food List below to accelerate your healing/break up with sugar.
No Food List
Grains, including oatmeal, rice, quinoa, and corn
Dairy, including butter
Beans/Legumes, which includes hummus (made from garbanzo beans, chick peas)
Peanuts (which are technically legumes)
Potatoes (white, red, yellow)
Added sugars, including honey, agave syrup, maple syrup
Artificial ANYTHING, sweeteners, flavors, colors, dyes