Q: Will eating a lot of sugar give me Diabetes?

A: The short answer is NO.

The long answer is no, but kind of.

Contrary to popular belief, eating sugar itself does not give you Diabetes.

However, eating a lot of sugar can lead to eating too many calories. And eating too many calories can lead to being fat. And being fat is a major risk factor for Diabetes. Make sense? You can actually reverse the effects of Diabetes by losing weight. The point is, indirectly, eating a lot of sugar may lead to Diabetes but it is not the direct cause.

As for regular old white sugar – it doesn’t serve any purpose nutritionally. But in terms of palatability, it can be everything. If you are worried about eating sugar, you don’t have to worry much if you’re eating it in small amounts. It actually has a medium GI rating. That means it’s not going to cause a massive spike in your blood sugar levels even when it’s eaten by itself. But when you combine it with a food that has a low GI, the average GI of the whole meal is lowered. Add sugar to a healthy meal and you’re not going to spike your blood sugar levels. But if you add sugar to a super-high carb meal or recipe (like, a cake), you will most definitely be cooking up some high blood sugar leading to a quick burst of energy and a big ol’ sugar comedown AKA food coma.

To figure out what foods are high and low in GI, check out this table. Just remember, you can lower the GI of any meal by simply adding low GI foods to it! It’s all in the combination of foods within a meal. Adding a teaspoon or two of sugar to your Weetbix or a bowl of porridge is definitely not going to cause any problems. However, it is important to remember that white sugar is empty of nutrients and over-consumption might lead to weight gain, tooth decay and various other health issues so consume it in moderation. The other option is to swap white sugar for the “raw” or less processed types or try natural sweeteners like maple or agave syrup which contain a whole lot of essential vitamins and minerals πŸ™‚

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