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Sugar 101: Arm Yourself with the Power of Mindful Choice

Sugar 101 Arm Yourself with the Power of Mindful Choice

Type 2 diabetes is presently a more common diagnosis for both children and adults than it ever has been. This is partly due to genetics, but the largest contributing factor to the prevalence of type 2 diabetes is obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. With this knowledge, we can arm ourselves to make better diet and lifestyle choices in an effort to prevent the development of type 2 diabetes.  

Diabetes in the US Infographic by Dr. Josh Axe

Image via: https://draxe.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Diabetes-in-the-US-Dr-Josh-Axe-Infographic.jpg

In the fast-paced western culture, many have traded in quality, whole foods for whatever is cheap and convenient.

But the secret is, we have a choice. With knowledge of what to avoid, how to decode the ingredient list on the foods we buy from the grocery store, and steps that help us make more mindful choices, we can protect ourselves.

According to the American Heart Association (AHA) the maximum amount of added sugars you should eat in a day are “Men: 37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons. Women: 25 grams or 6 teaspoons.” Researcher and documentary film maker, Stephanie Soechtig found that most Americans consume an average of 41 teaspoons of sugar a day. That’s over 5x the recommended daily allowance.

How is this happening? In addition to the over 60 names for sugar used in processed foods, there is sugar in foods like yogurt, pasta sauce and salsa. It is very difficult to avoid at the grocery store unless you vow to home-cook pretty much everything–and who has time for that?

Knowledge is power.

All Sugar is the Same to the Body

Cane sugar, brown sugar, raw sugar, agave syrup, honey, molasses, coconut sugar etc is all seen as equal once it is consumed by the body. It goes straight to the liver, and from there it is either stored in the liver for later use or converted into insulin to balance the hormones that consuming excess sugar produces.

There is, of course, a huge difference between artificial sweeteners and natural sugars. But control and balance with sugar is the key to avoid

Diet and Lifestyle are a Major Factor

Type 2 diabetes is both hereditary and environmental. There may be a predisposition to developing type 2 diabetes, but with a healthy diet and active lifestyle it can absolutely be prevented.

By being conscious about what foods we eat and ensuring we get enough mindful physical activity throughout each week, we will develop healthier habits and become aware of the impact our lifestyle has on our health.

This can also help inspire those around us to take charge of their health–and this awareness can spread like wildfire!

The Solution is Conscious Choice, Balance and Control

In our fast-paced lives, it is all too easy to run from one obligation to the next with little time in between for healthy meals. We eat on-the-go and grab whatever is around and, for many, that means fast food or sugar-filled snacks.

More whole foods and a plant-based diet can have a dramatic and positive effect on our health overall, and even make us happier! When the body is happy, the mind is happy. Through conscious choice and action, we can exercise our willpower and deliberately strike a balance in our diet, lifestyle and mentality. A shift in mentality like this does not only positively impact the individual, but can be felt on an energetic level by the whole world! This is the collective of humanity working harmony to create a better life.

Stronger Mind-Body Connection

When you are in tune with the needs and feelings of your physical body, you truly begin to converse with it. Take note how you feel after eating a hamburger and how you feel after a salad or vegetables. A strong mind-body connection is the key to total body health.

You may notice your favorite foods are no longer desirable as you associate discomfort or simply a heightened awareness with what you’re putting in your body. This will also send positive messages to your brain that you are worthy of good health and that you’re doing everything in your power to ensure this is the case.

Type 2 diabetes has become an epidemic, but with these tips and awareness, together we can change the course of our health.

Written by Morgan Garza
Morgan is a free spirit, world traveler and a lover of light. She loves to write about and research our inner healing power to help people realize their true potential. An avid practicer of yoga and meditation, Morgan is continuously evolving. She encourages all of us to follow our dreams by taking that first step into the unknown and truly practices what she preaches.
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