All of us enjoy a nice snack here and there, but the things that we choose to snack on can make a huge difference in the way our bodies begin to react to aging. In fact, some things can actually speed up the aging process and cause us to look older than we are prematurely. It’s important to identify these things and try our best to address them in our lifestyles.
Sugar, for example, is extremely bad for us. Specifically, processed and refined sugar. Natural sugar isn’t anywhere near as bad for our bodies unless we are diabetic and should be avoiding sugar
completely or keeping an eye on our sugar intake in general.
Unfortunately, typical refined sugars such as what we would find in bags for sale in our local grocery stores are chock full of glucose and fructose. These things actually have a bad reaction with the collagen that our bodies produce and can ultimately deteriorate them, which can cause our skin to lose its elasticity. When we eat too much sugar, we can develop dark spots on our skin, have a more difficult time healing our bodies when they are injured, and we are prone to skin issues. Eating too much sugar can give us blemishes, wrinkles, and a tightness in the skin, which can cause it to appear more stiff and rigid and lack in moisture and the supple smoothness most people associate with youth.
Some have compared the interaction that our collagen building cells have to sugar as the way that a
banana begins to brown when it is left out for a while. There is a chemical reaction between them that triggers entropy, and ultimately it makes it more difficult for us to build the important cells that help us to maintain our healthy and youthful appearance. That isn’t even going into the way that it can cause excessive weight gain, which can seriously diminish our health and ability to appear youthful.
The worse off our bodies are the more difficult it is for us to remain looking and feeling youthful.
Sugar can damage our skin because of something called glycation. When we eat an abundance of
sugar, the sugar that gets in our bloodstream ends up bonding with the healthier proteins in our skin that are related to collagen production. When this reaction takes place, our blood fills with something known as advanced glycation end products, appropriately known as AGEs. When our blood is
overpowered by these things, the good proteins are damaged and our skin suffers as a result, making
positive collagen formation difficult, if not impossible, to occur, and leaving our skin more brittle, dry, and less elastic.
Sugar can also make it difficult for the body’s natural antioxidants to thrive. These enzymes are crucial in helping us to get rid of the toxins in our bodies and free our bloodstream from the free radicals that can move up to our brain to cause issues, sometimes even becoming as extreme as dementia. If we aren’t able to properly get rid of the waste products in our bodies, then not only will our appearance suffer, but our overall health will as well. Our immune systems will not be as strong and we will have a difficult time properly oxidizing our blood, which can affect all of our organs in the long run. We may even suffer from hormonal imbalances, which, as we all know, is already something that our bodies struggle with as time goes on and would best be avoided if and when possible.
If you are concerned that sugar may have begun to affect your body negatively, there are some signs
that your sugar intake may be compromising your health and youthfulness. If your skin is discolored or abnormally red in some places, if your skin looks shiny and hard rather than soft and smooth, if you have lines around your top lip, if your neck area sags, and if you find that when you laugh, deeper crevices than normal appear, then it is highly possible that you are feeling the results of the consumption of too much sugar and that it is already chemically altering your body and making it difficult for you to naturally combat the signs of aging.
Anti-aging is a delicate process, and one that is best done with the removal of processed sugars from the diet. You could attempt to eat them in moderation, but don’t be surprised when you end up
simply craving more and more of it. This is because processed sugars are actually highly addicting, and we can have physical withdrawals if we start to eat it and then stop abruptly. It is better to cut out sugar entirely than it is to try and eat processed and refined sugars in moderation, because they can be so physically addicting that the cycle becomes very difficult to break, if not impossible.
Fortunately, there are some solutions if you find that you have a sweet tooth. Natural sugars can be found in fruits, and having fruits as a snack can be a great way to help us to stay on a path of antiaging.
The natural vitamins and minerals in fruit along with their collagen producing effects can really
keep our skin vibrant and our bodies full of energy.
Drinking a lot of water is another great way to help us to repair the effects of too much sugar intake.
There are some tips in previous chapters on how to increase water intake if that is something that you struggle with. It is also important, if not crucial, to scrutinize the products that you are putting into your body. High fructose corn syrup is a major factor in the aging process, as it is pure sugar in liquid form and it is found in many, many processed foods, snacks, and beverages. Make sure that you are avoiding it at all costs to ensure that you are allowing your body the chance to purge the bad things and build healthy collagen proteins.
Detoxing the skin and the body is another good way to reverse the effects of sugar on the skin. There are several different methods to do this and it would be best to consult your doctor or primary care physician about what route is the best for you to take, as all of our bodies are different and respond differently to different treatments. Another thing to do is to take supplements for B-complex, as it will help our bodies to get rid of the bad and maintain the good. B1 and B6 in particular are helpful in combatting the signs of aging due to a diet that is excessive in sugar.
You could also try to use sugar that isn’t as processed and refined, such as natural cane sugars. These sugars are a little bit easier for our bodies to break down because they are concentrated from the natural sugars produced by sugar cane plants. When we utilize sugars that are natural and easier for our bodies to digest, they aren’t quite as destructive as the refined sugars found in other products.
If you want to live a life of anti-aging, finding a compromise between sweets and what will actually help us to remain youthful can be incredibly important.
There is also the option of replacing the snacks and desserts that you love that are full of processed and refined sugars with snacks and desserts that are full of natural sugars instead. And by this we don’t mean getting rid of cakes and brownies. Rather, consider looking into a raw food cookbook. Raw food diets are not for everybody, but they can offer incredible and healthy alternatives to refined sugar-filled desserts that instead use things like dates, nuts, and agave nectar or honey as a way to keep things sweet and support our health rather than by harming it. Rather than eating a chocolate pudding in a plastic container or making it from a powder full of processed chemicals and sugar, you could use a food processor to create a pudding that is just as rich and sweet using avocado, cocoa powder, and a natural sweetener of your choice! Some of these recipes are so simple it seems almost impossible, but they exist and they are incredible resources for those who have a sweet tooth but who know that refined sugars are slowly destroying our bodies.
However you choose to approach this information, knowing that eating an excessive amount of
refined sugar is important. There are solutions, and there are ways that we can begin to repair the
damages that have already been done. Knowledge is power, and we can keep taking steps forward for
our health, starting now!