Sugar - A Major Cause of Diabetes and Hypoglycemia
In this article we consider sugar as a causative factor in the development of diabetes and hypoglycemia. We urge the reader to also consider sugar as a cause of immune dysfunction.
Some would have us believe that refined sugar is a wonder food, that it is not fattening or harmful, and that it is a marvelous source of natural energy that can be used without restraint.
Others tell us that...
"White sugar is the curse of the civilized world." (Dr. Michael Sharon, Complete Nutrition, p.29)
Dr Boris Chaitow, founding director of the internationally renowned High Rustenburg Hydro, tells us that...
"[Refined] sugar by its very nature and its function in the system, constitutes one of the most damaging of the so-called foods modern society imposes on itself. It is highly concentrated, taken out of its context, and above all inflicts on the poor pancreas a burden which is eventually responsible for two of society's serious physical stresses, namely diabetes and hypoglycemia." (Dr. Boris Chaitow, My Healing Secrets, p.67)
Well - what is the `sweet truth?' In order to find out, all we have to do is to consider how the body reacts every time we ingest refined sugar - and the truth will speak for itself.
First of all, we need to remind ourselves that blood sugar is the body's fuel and, without it, the brain, the nervous system and the tissues in the body could not function.
Then, having some appreciation of the importance of blood sugar, we will appreciate why it is that the body has been so well equipped to keep our blood sugar at optimum levels.
The two glands that play the most significant role in the regulation of our blood-sugar levels include...
Now, realizing the vital role that blood sugar plays, and having a very basic understanding of our primary blood sugar regulating mechanisms, we need to recognize that there is a vast difference between the sugar that is presented to us in the sweet fruits of nature, and that which commerce presents to us in the form of refined white sugar - and this includes those brands of "brown" sugar that amount to little more than brown-coloured white sugar.
These facts alone are enough to convince us that refined sugar, deprived as it is of fibre, and lacking as it is in ALL essential nutrients, cannot possibly contribute to our health. In fact, as the following will confirm, refined white sugar, when used on a regular basis, can represent a very serious threat to our health - especially when it is used in abundance as most people use it today. (One report tells us that the average American ingests plus/minus 43 teaspoons of sugar daily - little wonder, therefore, that the American people are more prone to illness and to obesity than most other nationalities).
When we ingest sugar that has been refined, there is no associated fiber to absorb the sugar and to facilitate its slow release into the bloodstream, and there are no nutrients that need to be digested and assimilated. As a result, the bulk of the ingested refined sugar is taken directly and almost immediately into the bloodstream - resulting in a profound and totally unnatural elevation in blood sugar levels. This boost in the blood sugar level makes us feel more energetic - but only for a while, - and at tremendous cost.
When the blood sugar level rises so dramatically, an urgent message is sent to the pancreas, "Quick! This is an emergency! We need plenty of insulin in order to lower blood sugar levels." (See Curve A on the graph below.)
The problem now is that in order to meet the crisis, the ever-willing pancreas pours out so much insulin that blood-sugar levels soon plummet to way below the level of normal (See curve (B) on the graph above.)
This, in turn, results in an urgent message being relayed to the adrenal glands. "Quick! This is an emergency! We need adrenalin in order to raise blood sugar levels back to normal."
And this is what happens every time we take a sugary cold drink or a cup of tea that has been sweetened with refined sugar, and this is what happens every time that we eat cakes, sweets, chocolates etcetera that have been sweetened with refined sugar and that have been produced from refined white flour (which is turned to sugar in the process of digestion).
For the average person today, the digestive emergency that is described above - which is depicted in the dark blue curve on the accompanying graph - takes place anything from five to fifteen or more times per day. This means, in turn, that the pancreas and the adrenal glands are being whipped into desperate and unnatural action at least five to fifteen times per day. And if the life is stressful, and filled with stimulating `adrenalin rush' type movies and activities, the poor old adrenals are whipped into action many more times than this in the course of the average day.
Eventually, either or both of the following can result,...
As a confirmed diabetic, some will suggest that our ailment could be hereditary, or that it was caused by some or other nebulous factor over which we had no control and, being typically human, we will be inclined to believe them. Others again will tell us that disease never comes without a cause, and that our excessive use of refined white sugar was most probably the cause. Either way, we will find ourselves wishing that we had understood "the sweet truth" and that we had taken appropriate action long before it was too late to do so.
And so, while it is true that refined sugar may produce a short-lived energy-boost, it only ever does so at a price that could be far more costly than the price of any sugar alternative? While it is true that refined sugar does taste good, there are natural alternatives that taste just as good and that do not have the same deleterious effects upon the human body. See Alternative Sweeteners.
as there is no wisdom in whipping tired horses, so there is no wisdom in forever "whipping" our pancreas and our adrenal glands for, sooner of later, the tired horse will refuse to move and, though life will continue, the journey will be most difficult - and it will most certainly be sugar-free.
While there is much more to the subject of blood sugar than is presented in this simplified explanation, the above should be sufficient to convince anyone that it would be wise to look for better alternatives.
(As mentioned above, it should be remembered that refined carbohydrates such as white flour, white rice and white pasta products are converted into simple sugars in the digestive tract and that excessive usage of these products can also place a similar burden on the system as sugar does - with the same disastrous end-results - Ed).
As a follow-up to this article, please see Alternative Sweeteners.