We are all coming back from a well-deserved Easter break, and when we are on a break it is definitely not the time to count how many hot cross buns we have devoured, or how much sugar was added to that Sunday afternoon dessert with family. “It’s just one slice” and “I’ll start exercising again on Tuesday” were the popular one-liners!
When deciding what to eat, you are not only helping your waistline, but your skin too. When we make healthy lifestyle choices we reduce all kinds of stresses in our bodies and sugar is one of those elements which cause severe stress and inflammation in our bodies.
Too much sugar makes the body go into a response where it thinks it is fighting a foreign object and this causes inflammation. If you have inflammatory skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, or rosacea for example, they can be worsened by consuming too many refined sugars.
Sugar is converted to insulin and this also triggers our oil glands to produce more oil. More oil may mean more breakouts if not managed correctly. Studies have been conducted on a group of people with the same grade of acne, wherein half of the group was put on a high sugar diet while the rest ate “clean”. Those who had the healthier (low in sugar) diet also ended up with the better skin.
A process called glycation is when sugar attaches itself to protein and lipid molecules in our bodies and is associated with many diseases and disorders. One of these is sagging/aging skin. That one extra cupcake might just add a few more wrinkles to your skin.
Cutting out sugar completely is not an easy task at all, so you can start by making small everyday lifestyle changes. Start by getting enough sleep. This way you won’t need that midday sugary snack to get you through the rest of the day.
Read nutrition labels on food, as there are many other fancy names given to sugar. Skip the fizzy drinks, and stick to water and herbal teas. Try to pack healthy lunches and snacks to work so as to not be tempted to go to the shops to buy lunch. Most chocolate looks more appealing that time of the day and so does that slice of carrot cake!