It was an interesting weekend. We had our eleven year old nephew stay with us for three days, and we were out doing things we don’t usually do. At a popular amusement center, we were waiting to go on one of the rides, and I was surprised by a sign that was posted at the entrance. It read, “CAUTION – For your safety, the ride attendant will ask you to lift your belly, so the safety belt can secure your waist.” I had never seen a sign like that anywhere, and I was struck by the tsunami of obesity that we are enduring. It made me think sharing some information about sugar and inflammation would be a good idea.
Later, we went for ice cream; I’ve readily admitted I’m no saint, although I am really good most of the time. We walked around the grounds eating the delicious treat, and when we passed a man with a huge banana boat, our nephew Gil looked up at us and said, “diabetes…” Clearly Gil understood the connection between sugar and diabetes, but when we talked about it a bit, he explained that kids don’t have to worry because they burn sugar faster while adults don’t.
There is some truth to the fact that kids burn everything faster than adults, but it’s not the complete picture. Type II diabetes is affecting more children and young people than ever before. If what Gil believes is really true, why would this be happening?
The fact is that even if you have a rapid metabolism and are not overweight, sugar still affects you whether you are a child or an adult. It makes your pancreas work hard to secrete insulin whenever you eat sugar or highly processed carbohydrates (which turn to sugar…sometimes even before you finish chewing them!).
There is a link between sugar and inflammation regardless of your weight or your age. Inflammation is the boogeyman and is your body and mind’s worst enemy. Inflammation leads to leaky gut, weight gain, heart disease, cancer, depression, Parkinson’s Disease, MS, and diabetes just to name a few of the “rewards” waiting for those of us choose to eat to increase the inflammation in our bodies!
I suggest to my clients they should ask their doctor to include a CRP test in their yearly blood work. CRP stands for C-reactive protein, and it is a measure of the level of inflammation in your body. Be prepared you may need to strongly request it or even argue to have it done. It’s not a test they will offer you. My test was the result of an argument. My PCP insisted I didn’t need the test, that the inflammation levels in my body would be fine. I wanted a baseline that I could come back to in three or five years to see how I was doing. Inflammation monitoring really is that important! After about five minutes of her saying “no” and me insisting on it, she agreed saying, “I’m not going to argue with you, you can have the test”. She was right, my inflammation was in the proper range, but I got my baseline, and now I can monitor myself in future years.
Remember, it’s in your best interest to manage your own healthcare and not be intimidated; advocate for yourself! When you go to eat sugar, I hope you’ll remember the connection between sugar and inflammation. By the way, your CRP level should be less than 5.0 mg/L.
I hope this is helpful. Please email me at email@example.com if you have questions or a topic you would like me to address. I’m here to serve you and help you in your quest for improved health and a better, longer life!
Helping You Achieve Major Wellness in Your Life!
Cheryl A Major, CNWC
Cheryl A Major lives in Westford and is a Certified Nutrition and Wellness Consultant. Her TV show, Thin Strong Healthy, airs on WestfordCat and is an offshoot of her blog http://ThinStrongHealthy.com Cheryl offers ongoing information and personal health coaching to help you feel better and be healthier. Follow Cheryl on Twitter @CherylAMajor. She is also a full time residential Realtor with Coldwell Banker with more than 25 years experience.
P.S. Check out all the free recipes for great tasting healthy eating in the Recipe Section at http://ThinStrongHealthy.com