Sugar. Nothing polarises a debate like this sweet word. There is a plethora of information out there. But what really is sugar, does it matter where it comes from, what effects does it really have on your brain and has it always been in our diet ? We look at these questions and more in this podcast and hope to shed some clear light on the issue.
The chemical use of the word sugar can be confusing to those of us who know it as the sweet stuff in the sugar bowl on the table or glistening on top of doughnuts and pastries. Sugar is everywhere in nature, as a single molecule it is called glucose, the type of sugar our brain enjoys using as energy, but combined with another sugar molecule – fructose, it is called sucrose and this is the white table sugar often labelled the white death! So depending where you find it, it has a slightly different chemical structure and name. Confused already? I don’t blame you. It is confusing and far too much has been printed about the dangers of sugar in the diet and in soda drinks but there is not a clear enough explanation of what sugar is, what is does and what we should be avoiding.
It is impossible to have a sugar free diet and those people that purport this just need to stop it. Our bodies require some amount of glucose and fructose to function properly. There is sugar in most foods. And it is not wise to attempt to eliminate all sugar from your diet. But this is not the end of the story because more important is what happens to those sugars when they reach your digestive system and your cardiovascular system. As always, we have simplified things and given the impression all sugar is bad all the time and that is just not the case.