HealthRejecting sugar trends: Why all sugar is still sugar, despite celebrity claims

Rejecting sugar trends: Why all sugar is still sugar, despite celebrity claims

Agave syrup, contrary to appearances, is not a healthier alternative to sugar.
Agave syrup, contrary to appearances, is not a healthier alternative to sugar.
Images source: © Getty Images | brent Hofacker
11:15 AM EST, January 15, 2024

A diet high in sugar can lead to inflammatory conditions that contribute to chronic diseases. It can also result in obesity, heart and liver diseases, type 2 diabetes, cavities, loss of minerals from bones, and chronic fatigue.

There are often news reports about new, healthier types of sugar that can replace classic sucrose.

All Sugar is Still Sugar

Dr. Duane Mellor, a dietician and nutrition lecturer at Coventry University in the UK, urged festival attendees to disregard the advice of self-proclaimed nutrition gurus, who often lead people down the path of so-called clean eating.

"Whatever you sweeten with, the important thing to remember is that all sugar is still sugar," he remarked.

Dr. Mellor noted that agave syrup, a costly and trendy alternative to white sugar, has a low sucrose content and a low glycemic index. Thus, it is considered a healthy substitute for the harmful "white sugar".

Yet, in truth, agave syrup is high in another type of sugar, fructose. That makes it similar to typical processed sugar, which is largely blamed for obesity.

The Importance of a Balanced Diet

Dr. Mellor believes the solution is simple; limit the consumption of all forms of sugar. The solutions that celebrities rave about are temporary and largely expensive. Investing in a healthy, balanced diet is a smarter choice. If we consistently eat healthily, sporadic small amounts of sugar will not cause harm.

In these situations, it's worth considering honey as an alternative. While it is high in calories and shouldn't be consumed excessively, honey contains beneficial minerals like magnesium and iron, B vitamins, and has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It aids the immune and digestive system and prevents cell damage.

"We need to ease up and stop obsessing about every single part of our diet. It's more beneficial to focus on overall nutrition," Dr. Mellor explained.
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