Sugar Increases Bowel Disease Risk

Cutting out sugar can be hard. Is there a ton of hidden sugar in many foods and sweet things are tasty and moreish. And, with so many holidays like Valentine’s day, we are presented with sugar all the time. We don’t lie: we love sweet things. With blood sugar concerns, it’s incredibly important to avoid carbs and sugar. It can be difficult because not only are many products sugary-heavy, but there is also a psychological barrier as well. Having even more reasons not to eat sugar can help to make it less attractive and resolve our efforts to avoid it. New research shows that sugar can harm the bowel, this knowledge may help us shun sweet stuff.

In most studies about bowel disease and the western diet have mainly focused on the high-fat content. However, it has long been known that sugar aids harmful bacteria in the gut, and it damages the healthy bacteria in the microbiome. This research comes from the Univ. of Alberta and was performed with mice. The study not only confirmed that sugar is bad for the bowels but that it causes damage very quickly. After being on a high-sugar diet for as little as two days, mice were far more susceptible to inflammation of the colon than the mice who ate balanced diets.

It’s been previously shown that the type of diet you are on can change your susceptibility to disease,” said Karen Madsen, of the Univ. of Alberta. “We wanted to know how long it takes before a change in diet translates into an impact on health. In the case of sugar and colitis, it only took two days, which was really surprising. We didn’t think it would happen so quick.”

The sugar-fed mice had worse immune responses, more tissue damage and a lack of fatty acids. That can have long-term impacts on the body’s health. The speed at which the damage occurs shows that we need to rethink “cheat days.”

Surprisingly, our study shows that short-term sugar consumption can really have a detrimental impact, and so this idea that it’s OK to eat well all week and indulge in junk food on the weekend is flawed,” Madsen explained.

Many of us with blood sugar concerns want to change our diet but have a hard time doing so. Between hidden sugar, habits and tastes, it can be almost impossible. But, this news may have you redoubling your efforts. The researchers also said that they found that food that was rich in dietary fiber aided the healthy bacteria and negated some of the damage of the sugar. So, perhaps, your best plan is to keep cutting sugar while also increasing your intake of fiber.

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