SUGAR ... THE ULTIMATE ANTIOXIDANT?
Updated: Sep 12, 2022
Sugar as the cause of obesity, and ill health? When you analyse both the research and the actual biochemistry of the human body, you start to see a very different picture unfold with some extremely convincing evidence to contrary.
Of course when I say sugar, I’m referring to Glucose and Fructose, I’m not referring to or donuts, cakes and all manner of food stuff people commonly associate with the word sugar. People rarely ever consume sugar in its pure form. When was the last time you ate a spoonful of raw coconut or maple sugar? Real honey or royal jelly?
People, by association, demonize fruit, honey, royal jelly and even just simple, raw cane sugar with zero real evidence for its negative effects in the context of an otherwise solid hormonally focused diet like we talk about on this channel and in my books. Rarely do people fully understand what sugar is and how it acts in the body and how much it really contributes to obesity, inflammation, hormones, etc.
So ... first off, what is sugar? Sugars are naturally occurring carbohydrates that provide energy for the body in the form of glucose and fructose. Your brain, for example, requires roughly 130 grams of glucose on a daily basis to cover the most basic energy needs. The basic internal organs, glands and muscles all use glucose as their main energy source. This is a fact !!!
Almost all carbohydrates, starches and sugars break down to glucose, the simplest form of sugar, after ingestion. The rate at which this happens is measured by the glycemic index or the glycemic load. Although low-carbers tried for years to confuse average people into believing that low glycemic index would be it for weight loss, research showed time and again, that it was the total energy intake of calories, not the glycemic index that is behind our ability to gain or lose body fat.
Now, the most common kinds of sugar in our diet include glucose, which is the simplest for of sugar and the main energy providers in the cells in the body. The blood sugar in your veins is also glucose. There’s fructose which is found naturally in fruits and honey. It’s much sweeter in than glucose and is metabolized in the liver instead of in the gut. Now, there’s sucrose, which is table sugar. It’s about 50% fructose and 50% glucose. You can get it extracted it beets or sugar cane. Sucrose occurs naturally in vegetables and fruits.
Then there’s lactose, which is milk sugar, it’s found in milk and dairy products, naturally. There’s also maltose, which is found in malted drinks and beer. Now, the studies looking into the affects of sugar on various health parameters, often use pure fructose, pure glucose or sucrose. In our normal daily lives, the majority of the sugars we consume come in a balance of about 50% glucose and 50% fructose. The main difference between glucose and fructose is the fact that the latter is metabolized in the liver and is more rapidly absorbed.
So, there are actually some real health benefits of sugar. Due to the demonization of sugar, it might seem a bit crazy to claim that sugar consumption would actually have health benefits. It does definitely seem that way, however, there’s evidence to the contrary (like the NuCell Program). Why would this source of energy that the body naturally prioritises be harmful for us? Why would the most easily attainable, naturally occurring foods like berries or fruit, which are loaded with simple sugars, be the cause of our ever-increasing weight and health problems? Lastly, why would these problems have skyrocketed all while our consumption of sugar has actually decreased?
If we look at the scientific evidence without any pre-existing beliefs about sugar, it becomes obvious that this stuff is not as bad as one would think. There’s plenty of research showing how glucose and fructose actually negatively correlate with diabetes. And that fructose, due to the fact that it’s metabolized in the liver, doesn’t need insulin to be pushed into the cells. Which is probably why higher intakes of fructose have been found to improve, yes improve, insulin sensitivity.
What about the claimed idea that sugar makes us fat? That’s what everyone says. Has anyone considered the fact that sugars are actually the primary fuel for the thyroid gland? Your thyroid gland requires glucose, period. The thyroid gland actually controls the rate at which your body burns calories, aka, your metabolic rate. When you eat more simple sugars, your thyroid glad produces more T4 thyroid hormones and with the adequate sugar stored in the liver, your body can easily convert T4 into the active T3 form which greatly improves energy function and metabolic rate.
If sugars and carbohydrates make us fat, why in the world are almost all body builders for the last 100 years, why have they all eaten high carb diets while getting chiseled? Heck, when you lower your calories in order to lose weight, one of the most powerful compounds that can preserve metabolic rate is, in fact, fructose. It supposedly is the substance most notorious for making us gain weight, however, in reality, it’s pretty low in caloric content, it has the ability to greatly support metabolic rate and has a muscle sparing effect. The liver provides about 70% of our active thyroid hormone by converting thyroxine to T3, but it can provide this active hormone only when it has adequate glucose.
And what about the fatty liver disease, one of the key evils that fructose is blamed for? Well, in reality, fructose has been shown to be protective against hepatic liver issues. And when there’s adequate choline in the diet, over feeding of fructose does not lead to fat accumulation in the liver at all. The problem with fatty liver disease has nothing to do with fructose and everything to do with eating too much polyunsaturated fatty acids which actually prevent exportation of liver fat and the lack of choline, which is a necessary micronutrient required in the exportation of fat from the liver as well, which you will learn in detail at The NuCell Program.
About the claim that sugar is toxic: actually research shows that simple sugars have antioxidative effects, improving the antioxidant capacity of cells and therefore reducing inflammation and oxidative stress.
Sugar is the primary source of energy that our cells crave. It’s widespread in the most natural food stuffs and simple sugars are the main fuel for the master gland that controls our metabolic rate and energy production in the thyroid. Glucose and fructose have antioxidant-like effects. In reality, they don’t contribute to fatty liver disease at all unless there’s a deficiency of choline, which prevents the exportation of fat from the liver.
Glucose actually plays a vitally important role in the production of glutathione. We actually have a complex endogenous antioxidant system that is ultimately fueled by glucose. Through the pentose phosphate pathway, glucose supplies hydrogen ions and electrons which we would call reducing power to NADPH, which is derived from niacin, which is also known as Vitamin B3. The enzyme glutathione reductase uses riboflavin, also known Vitamin B2 to pass this reducing power on to glutathione. Glutathione, the master endogenous antioxidant, then uses its reducing power to neutralize hydrogen peroxide to water to neutralize lipid peroxidase to less harmful hydroxy fatty acids and to recycle Vitamin C. Vitamin C recycles Vitamin E, the principle defense against liquid peroxidation in cellular membranes.
Thus, the multiple roles of glutathione within the antioxidant defense system mitigating the accumulation of reactive oxygen species protecting vulnerable fatty acids within the cellular membranes and cleaning up any damage that has slipped through the system and are ultimately supported by reducing power derived from the glucose.
So, instead of wasting more time reading books on ketogenic or carnivore diets, it would be in your best interest to start approaching nutrition from a cellular health stand point, since the basic foundations of human biochemistry, in the full context of research on hormones, supports this notion.
Ditch the keto and now carnivore mania and run to get some bananas .... and make sure people you listen to have some experience / result in the field of human health !!!!