The 5 biggest fables about sugar

Some Fit chicks have completely renounced sugar. They start with a detox diet and then decide to never-ever eat a teaspoon of sugar again. I hear this too often. But should we believe all evil ‘facts’ about this delicious ingredient? I don’t think so

1. ‘SUGAR MAKES CHILDREN AND ADULTS HYPERACTIVE’

You can probably hear your mom/aunt/grandmother say: “No, don’t give them too many candies otherwise they will stay up the whole night”. In itself this is a nice assumption, but this was never proven.  In the 70s an American pediatrician claimed that the consumption of much sugar would lead to hyperactivity in children. In combination with his claim, he wrote a large number of diet books which were sold as fast as warm bread (without sugar). Without a doubt, this was a clever marketing stunt. However a large part of what he said was a lie.

 

2 ‘TOO MUCH SUGAR CAUSES DIABETES’

This is a misconception which still a lot of people think is a fact. Type 1 diabetes – the non-generic variant, is not caused by eating too much sugar. Type 2 diabetes can occur when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin. Or when the body no longer responds to insulin. This may be due to genetic predisposition, but also it may be due an unhealthy lifestyle. This is not necessarily because of eating too much sugar, but the result of eating too much candies and unhealthy things.  In fact, candies are often high in calories and fat. Excess calories causes weight gain and when someone gains a lot of weight, this can make them be in higher risk to develop diabetes. Keep that in mind!

3. ‘SUGAR FREE IS ALWAYS THE BEST OPTION’

Nope, this is not always the case. Candies (or sweets) without sugar are often sweetened with artificial sweetener. You can often taste the difference in  flavor when you compare it to a ‘real’ candy. People often think that if something doesn’t contain sugar, it is a license for them to eat all kinds of snacks in all kinds of amounts. Just as with sugar, other sweetening ingredients can also become addictive. Also, artificial sweeteners can cause stomach discomfort. Ehmm, sitting in the toilet hours straight because you let yourself go crazy with the ‘sugar-free’ candies doesn’t sound ideal, does it?

4. ‘SUGAR IS THE #1 REASON OF WEIGHT GAIN’

Sounds plausible, yet it is not. Weight gain is simply caused by consuming too much calories. Whether they come from sugar, or from fat doesn’t matter. Too many calories are too many calories. If you want to lose weight, it is of course a logical step to cut down on sugars, because there is normally a lot of sugar on products which do not make you feel full. So you could better replace your favorite muesli with chocolate with a homemade granola with fresh fruit.

5. ‘SUGAR IS POISON’

Yes, this is perhaps the most exaggerated comment I occasionally hear. The sugar industry is something completely different than the ingredient sugar itself. What people do with sugar is indeed not always good for you. S’mores, sodas, candies, cupcakes, just to mention some. If you ingest daily a normal amount of sugar, and not drown yourself in liters of cola, you have nothing to fear. You won’t get poisoned. Thank god!

Be honest, in which of this fables did you believe before reading this post?

 

Sugar free banana cake

I have repeatedly thrown myself into the kitchen to find the perfect recipe to deliver such results. Besides wanting an anti-stick,  sugar free banana cake, I also wanted it to be a recipe that would succeed every time. Hundreds of attempts later, I finally found it!

This non stick, sugar free banana cake makes one thing very clear: sugar free food does not have to be boring! But why zero sugar? Let me tell you briefly.

When you touch something sweet with your tongue, your taste buds send a message to your brains: mmmm, yummy! Your body then spoils themselves with the reward hormone, dopamine. While all this happens, the sugar has arrived in your stomach. There, it is diluted by various digestive juices, after which it then passes to the small intestine. There enzymes begin to break down every particle into glucose and fructose. And these two molecules cause annoying effects.

GLUCOSE

The glucose sneaks through the walls of the small intestine, this triggers the pancreas to secrete insulin. Insulin is a hormone that takes the glucose from the blood and turns it into energy. This sounds positive, but it’s not unfortunately. Because when you ingest too much glucose, your body can not handle it. This means that the energy boost that you get it is short-lived. And what do you get after an energy boost? Right, that oh-so-famous sugar crash! Most likely, you sometimes have to deal with that annoying little voice in your head that says after a treat, “more, more, more”. That voice is all thanks to glucose. Because when you consume a lot of sugar and for a prolonged time, the number of dopamine receptors (substances that provide for the transmission of nerve impulses) decrease in your brain. This will make you crave sugar even more, sometimes this can even be be like an addictions!

FRUCTOSE

Fructose, like glucose, creeps through the walls of small intestine. Unlike glucose however it only flows directly into your bloodstream, after which it goes to your liver. Your liver then works hard to digest fructose and is soon overwhelmed, especially when you get an oh-so-famous sweet attack and you can no longer control yourself. If this continues for a long time the excess fructose can ensure the growth of fat globules in the liver, which in the end may result in a fatty liver . In addition, fructose lowers your good HDL cholesterol and increases the production of triglycerides. Triglyceride is the type of fat that can move to the arteries. And this increases the risk of heart attack or stroke.

In short (too much) sugar is not good for you. And this is why I made this sugar free banana cake!

HOW TO MAKE SUGAR FREE BANANA CAKE

sugar free banana cake

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 bananas
  • 3 eggs
  • 25 g coconut oil
  • 100 gr crushed oats
  • 50g self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 40g mixed unsalted nuts
  • pinch of salt
  • some coconut oil for greasing the pan along greasing

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
  2. Mash the bananas in a bowl.
  3. Melt the coconut oil in the microwave oven (30 sec.)
  4. Add the coconut oil and the eggs to the bowl with bananas and mix well. This can be done with just a fork or spoon.
  5. Put all the remaining ingredients into the bowl and stir until you have a nice batter. You can choose to chop the nuts into smaller pieces if you like.
  6. Grease the baking tin with coconut oil and place it in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes.

Et voila, there’s your perfect anti -stick, sugar free banana cake! Need more ideas for easy, healthy recipes? Then take a look at my Instagram!

Sugar free, gluten free granola

We absolutely ♥ granola, but unfortunately most of them contain tooooo much sugar and artificial ingredients. And that, we don’t like! But no fear, because we found this recipe on Inlovewithhealth.nl to make your own sugar free, gluten free granola. Ain’t that a trip?!

Ingredients for six servings

This is how we do it: 

  • Preheat the oven at 170°C
  • Whip up the egg whites
  • Add the gingerbread spices and stevia and mix it up
  • Add the nuts and seeds to your mix gently
  • Put a baking sheet on your baking tray and spread out your mix
  • Bake for approximately 15 minutes. Stir everything carefully and bake for another 15 minutes
  • Turn off the oven and let it cool down in the oven

You can vary this granola with dried fruits, coconut, cinnamon, dark chocolate or goji berries . The sky is the limit!