7 Things That Might Happen If You Give up Sugar

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Sugar isn’t the best thing for you, but like most substances, it isn’t harmful in moderation.

You hear that? We said in moderation.

But if you decide that even moderate consumption is too much, you could experience some surprising perks. Below are 7 benefits that might come with a sugar-free diet, according to nutritionist Jenna Hope.

#7. Say goodbye to your gut troubles.

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When you reduce the refined sugar in your diet, you often swap it for foods rich in dietary fiber like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and whole grains – all of which are better for your gut.

“These foods contribute to a healthy gut function, as they help to increase the number of healthy microbiota in the gut. In turn, this helps to remove unwanted toxins, as well as increasing frequency of bowel movement and reducing transit time.”

#6. Your skin might improve.

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With less sugar comes less insulin, which can cause inflammation and lead to “a breakdown of collagen and elastin in the skin.”

#5. Your mental health could get a positive boost.

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Recent research shows a link between sugar and mental health issues, particular anxiety disorders.

“While sugar intake isn’t necessarily a cause of anxiety, the constant blood sugar roller coaster and release of adrenaline and insulin may contribute to the feelings of anxiety in those who already suffer. It’s important to note that changing your diet won’t necessarily cure anxiety, but it can help to reduce some of the symptoms associated with it.”

#4. You might get an energy boost.

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With high-sugar foods, you get a short-term boost before a horrible crash, and the up and down insulin spikes can lead to trouble.

“Freeing yourself from this reliance on sugar becomes hugely gratifying as your energy levels become more stable throughout the day, without the large peaks and troughs. Opt for snacks rich in protein and healthy fats in order to help balance your blood sugar.”

#3. Moodiness could be a thing of the past.

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If you’re susceptible to moodiness, you might have low levels of a particular hormone called BDNF – and sugar suppresses it further.

“Sugar has been shown to suppress a hormone called BDNF, which is required to produce new neurons. Individuals who are susceptible to low mood have lower BDNF, and so the suppression of this from sugar may further enhance low mood and depression.”

#2. Get ready for better sleep.

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“A high sugar intake will delay the release of melatonin in the brain, which is essential for the homeostatic control of sleep. Research suggests that poor sleep may lead to an impaired blood glucose balance, which stimulates your desire to consume more sugar.”

#1. Your liver will thank you.

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Your liver helps store excess fructose, and that can spell bad news, health-wise.

“The consumption of excess sugar (particularly in the form of fructose) and sugar-sweetened beverages is heavily linked to nonalc*holic fatty liver disease.”

I’m not sure I’m convinced (because sugar), but it’s pretty interesting nonetheless!