The Destructive Sugar Impact on the Body

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sugar impact

The Destructive Sugar Impact

The largest source of calories for individuals living in industrialized nations comes from sugar.  Sugar increases insulin levels which promote fat accumulation and inflammation throughout the body (1). This article will cover the destructive sugar impact on the body and healthy alternatives you can use instead.

Sugar consumption and elevated insulin accelerate the aging process and create an environment conducive to degenerative disease (2).  This article dives into the destructive sugar impact on the various tissues and physiological processes of the body.


The Chemistry of Sugar

The chemistry of sugar is based on the number of carbohydrates and includes monosaccharides, disaccharides and oligosaccharides.   The most important monosaccarides are glucose, dextrose, and fructose.  The primary difference in these deals with the way they are digested and metabolized.  Glucose and dextrose are basically the same form of sugar.  Many sugars can be identified by their characteristic “ose” ending.

Many of these sugars also combine to form complex sugars such as sucrose.  Sucrose, typical table sugar, is a disaccharide (2 sugar forms) that is half glucose and half fructose.  Meanwhile, high fructose corn syrup is 55% fructose and 45% glucose.

sugar impact

Massive Increase in Sugar Consumption

In the year 1700, the average individual consumed about 4 pounds of sugar each year.  In 1800, it was about 18 pounds of sugar per year.  In 1900, the average person ate 90 pounds of sugar per year (3).  In 2018, the average individual consumes 150 pounds of sugar per year.  Half of our society consumes ½ pound of sugar per day.   Most of this is in unnatural, man-made forms such as sucrose and high fructose corn syrup.

Most forms of sugar (other than fructose based sources) metabolize quickly in the body into a simple glucose form.  This glucose is then funneled into cells by the hormone insulin.  This process is performed very well in our bodies when the cells are kept sensitive to the circulating insulin.

Lifestyle behaviors that lead to chronically elevated blood sugar and insulin levels cause a cellular resistance to insulin.  These behaviors include excessive sugar intake, processed foods and sedentary lifestyle.  Elevated blood sugar and insulin cause excessive free radical damage and inflammation throughout the body (4).

The Major Problems with Elevated Sugar:

  1. The sugar impact damages the immune system and reduces its functional ability.
  2. Dehydrates the cells and depletes the body of critical electrolytes such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, & sodium leading to cell death and chronic muscle spasms.
  3. Depletes the body of chromium, copper, & zinc and other trace minerals that help sensitize cells to insulin.  This further accelerates cell membrane insulin resistance
  4. Induces cancer cell division and proliferation and inhibits mechanisms that slow down tumor growth and inhibit cancer cell apoptosis (programed cell death)
  5. Creates tissue damaging Advanced Glycation End Products (AGE’s)
  6. The Sugar Impact depletes the body of antioxidants such as glutathione, vitamin C & vitamin E.
  7. Inhibits Human Growth Hormone (HGH) and elevates cortisol levels
  8. Inhibits cellular protein synthesis which results in dysfunctional bone, muscle, and joint chemistry.  This accelerates the risk of osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and chronic muscle and joint pain.
  9. Promotes the growth of pathogenic bacteria and parasites such as Candida and other yeast like organisms.  This also depletes the body of good bacteria and can lead to chronic infections in the gut, respiratory tissue and sinuses.
  10.  The sugar impact leads to obesity, elevated triglycerides, abnormal LDL:HDL cholesterol levels, elevated arterial inflammatory risk factors.
  11.  Opens up the blood brain barrier, depletes the brain of trace mineral stores and allows toxins and other heavy metals to accumulate in brain tissue.
  12.  Destroys nerves leading to chronic pain, neuropathies, vision disorders, and accelerated organ dysfunction.

Inflammation Crushing Ebundle

The Inflammation Crushing Ebundle is designed to help you improve your brain, liver, immune system and discover the healing strategies, foods and recipes to burn fat, reduce inflammation and Thrive in Life!

As a doctor of natural medicine, I have spent the past 20 years studying the best healing strategies and worked with hundreds of coaching clients, helping them overcome chronic health conditions and optimize their overall health.

In our Inflammation Crushing Ebundle, I have put together my very best strategies to reduce inflammation and optimize your healing potential.  Take a look at what you will get inside these valuable guides below!

Inflammation, 5 Ways To Reduce Inflammation Quickly

Sources For This Article Include:

1. Harvard Health Publications: What you eat can fuel or cool inflammation, a key driver of heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic conditions. Link Here
2. Life Extension Magazine: Halt Sugar-Induced Aging Link Here
3. Whole Vegan: Refined sugar History Link Here
4. WebMD: Diabetes and Inflammation Link Here
5. Sanchez A, Reeser JL, Lau HS, Yahiku PY, Willard RE, McMillan PJ, Cho SY, Magie AR, Register UD. Role of sugars in human neutrophilic phagocytosis. Am J Clin Nutr. 1973 Nov;26(11):1180-4. PMID: 4748178
6. Cancer Tutor: Episode 2: Your First Line of Defense Link Here
7. Nancy Appleton Books Health Blog: 141 Reasons Sugar Ruins Your Health Link Here
8. Doctor Oz: Sugar’s Sour Side Effects Link Here
9. Harvard Health Publications: Eating too much added sugar increases the risk of dying with heart disease Link Here
10. WebMD: The Truth About Sugar Link Here

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Dr. Jockers

Dr David Jockers is passionate about seeing people reach their health potential in mind, body and spirit. He is the host of the popular “Dr Jockers Functional Nutrition” podcast and the author of the best-selling books, “The Keto Metabolic Breakthrough” and “The Fasting Transformation.”


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  1. Could sugar be a cause for MSA? A friend, 55 female, was diagnosed with MSA and no cure. I don’t believe there is no cure. Can cutting out sugar help people with this horrible disease?

    1. Hi Tammy, I am so sorry to hear about your friend. Sugar has a devastating effect on the body and I don’t recommend its consumption to anyone. Removing sugar in diet can help improve blood sugar balance and sleep among other things. We will be praying for her!

  2. Dr. Jockers,
    I read your articles every day. I live in South Africa. I eat about 4 fruits daily and half a cup of raw coconut. The sugars contained in this diet dangerous. I am 63 years old and quite fit with no illnesses.

    1. that some healthy life style you are abiding by, i have honey instead of coconut sugar since it is healthier and costs less over here in belarus

    2. Hey Morgan, That is great to hear! Fruits such as berries, green apples, lemons and limes are low glycemic and full of powerful nutritional support! Blessings!

  3. I have been reading your emails on various conditions. The one that interest me is inflammation as I have just been diagnosed with Autoimmune disease. My CRP results showed high inflammation in my body. Since May this year I have developed eye problems. First the Ophthalmology said it was Episcleritis then another Dr said it appears to be Uveitis. I was first prescribed Prednisolone for 4 wks. Then I refused to take them as I experienced a lot of side-affects. I was then prescribed Diclofenac Sodium 50mg 3x for 2wks, also eye drops 10ml Maxidex 4x for 2wks. First it helped with my eyes but now it has come back. I am still taking the medication. In my recent appointment with Ophthalmology and combined Rheumatologist I have been advice to take Mycophenolate Mofetil Teva 500mg x2 a day.

    For few year I have had Arthritis and Fibromyalgia. I also have SVT…
    The inflammation in my body had gone worse and I have continues fever and all body pains. It is worse when I don’t take the medication.
    The problem is I do not want to take Mycophenolate Mofetil Teva because there are lot of side-affects related to this medication, and also it involves having blood test done every 2 weeks.
    I have been trying not to eat most of the inflammation food and am trying to do some walking. As I cant walk much due to my heals hurting me.
    I would really appreciate some advice from you of what I should or could do.
    Thank you

  4. I was looking for the healthy alternatives to sugar promised in the 1st paragraph of the article. What are those?
    thank you

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