Chennai: Refined white sugar should be restricted in diet as about 10 per cent to 20 per cent than the recommended amount that can contribute to adverse health effects, says World Health Organisation.
An overload of sugar in the diet is known to cause weight gain, which further has a direct link to a range of diseases- from diabetes to some forms of cancer, say medicos.
A large amount of free sugar that is consumed is ‘hidden’ in processed foods and drinks, especially alcohol. “White sugar is slow poison. Refined white sugar such as sucrose and high fructose corn syrup contain excess calories and zero essential nutrients. Consuming up to 10 per cent to 20 per cent more sugar than the recommended amount can contribute to adverse health effects. It can have harmful effects on metabolism and contribute to a variety of lifestyle diseases. Sugar also contributes to acute inflammation of the walls of blood-carrying arteries. The resultant spike in insulin starts damaging the fragile arterial walls,” said Dr K. K. Aggarwal, former president of Indian Medical Association.
Apart from this, the tendency of blood to form clots and plaques also increases proportionately. The resultant inflammatory environment in the circulatory system can cause heart disorders and stroke to precipitate, added Dr Aggarwal.
The recommended sugar intake not only includes the added sugar in food and beverages by the manufacturer, but also the natural sugar present in honey, syrups and fruit juices. The intake recommendation holds true for both adults and children, though higher risk of lifestyle diseases is in adults.
“Though there are many factors that contribute to ovarian cancer development in women, but increased consumption of sugary drinks suggest an increase in the risk.
The consumption of refined sugars has increased currently due to changed lifestyle, but reports suggest that sugar intake played a major role on ovarian cancer development in women, especially the ones with ovarian cysts,” said gynecologist Dr R. Mala. Doctors say that alternatives such as jaggery, sugarcane or honey can be chosen over sugar and at least five servings of fruits and vegetables should be consumed daily....