What is the number one food that directly contributes to Heart Disease?
For decades, we’ve been told by GPs to limit or cut out our fat intake, but its sugar that is the health demon. It raises your risk of dying of heart disease even if you aren’t overweight. A major study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association revealed that that those with the highest sugar intake had a four-fold increase in their risk of heart attacks compared to those with the lowest intakes. Refined flours spike insulin just as much as sugar so not only are the obvious culprits in junk foods, but most people are unwittingly adding high risk levels of sugar by eating breads, and pasta, and bagels. Did you know there is more sugar in fruity yoghurt than Coke!
These sugars and refined carbs turn on an insulin response and insulin causes inflammation of blood vessels. If you have surging insulin levels going back and forth with high sugar, insulin, high sugar, insulin, i.e. blood sugar swings- it causes the cells to become inflamed and sets the process for inflammatory atherosclerosis. The average diabetic ages 15 years quicker than the average non-diabetic. But it makes sense—if you have problems with sugar metabolism, you’re going to age quicker. We know now that because the sugar and proteins create glycolated proteins in the body, and these cause accelerated aging. What’s worse is that excessive sugar consumption can also cause weight gain, combined with sustained high insulin levels, can lead to insulin resistance and diabetes—which further increases your risk of cardiovascular disease.
How To Avoid Heart Disease Caused by Sugar
1. Avoid High Fructose Corn Syrup Most of the sugar you eat is “hidden,” usually in the form of high fructose corn syrup. This corn-based sweetener is used in thousands of foods, from tomato sauce to soft drinks and crackers. Do everything you can to avoid foods containing this sweetener.
2. Use natural sweeteners you must sweeten foods, add a little fruit juice or try some shredded raw or dried apples, coconut, raisins or dates. Use spices such as cinnamon cloves or nutmeg. Or experiment with stevia, an herbal supplement that is now available as a sweetener.
3. Restrict bread and bread products as much as you can, especially those containing wheat.
4. Eat little and often. By eating little portions spread throughout the day, you’ll feel more satiated and be less inclined to overload on sweets that can cause heart disease.
5. Limit alcohol intake. This includes wine, beer and liquor. Many people don’t realise that alcohol contains a large store of hidden sugar.
6. Eat an anti-inflammatory Mediterranean or Paleo style Diet
A diet of plenty of vegetables, fresh fruits, fish and whole cut meats and good fats.