Last Update 21:3
Saturday, 24 August 2019

Sugar addiction: The risk of having more than just a 'sweet tooth'

Doctors give Ahram Online tips for Egyptians to fight their sugar addiction in order to avoid lethargy, mood swings, heart problems and premature ageing

Ingy Deif, Sunday 10 Mar 2013
photo: AP
Share/Bookmark
Views: 2326
Share/Bookmark
Views: 2326

Indulging in sweets and desserts is a real treat for people of all ages and genders; it lifts spirits and boosts the mood like no other food can. The problem occurs when consumption goes beyond moderation to affect not only the waistline, but also risks a permanent change in health and lifestyle by developing diabetes.

According to the statistics issued by the health ministry, more than 7.3 million Egyptian are diabetic, a number confirmed by Dr Mohamed Mostafa Hamed, health minister, who said that campaigns are being launched all over the world to raise awareness regarding early diabetes diagnosis.

Dr Hamed stressed that if the problem is left unsolved, the percentages in Egypt will soar, exceeding international averages, to reach a whooping 12.4 million diabetic cases by 2030.

Statistics released at the Challenges and Methods to Combat Diabetes conference under the auspices of the health ministry say that an estimated 50 percent of diabetics do not even know that they have the disease. These numbers place Egypt among the top ten countries suffering from diabetes.

Sugar is hidden in many kinds of preserved and packaged foods, reveals Dr Fawzi El Shubaki, professor of nutrition at National Research Institute. Egyptians usually exceed the daily recommended cap - 50 grams for women and 70 for men - by far.

"It’s a lifestyle decision," concludes Dr Asmaa El Kateb, fitness and diet specialist.

"People come to us complaining of weight gain and lethargy and the first thing we probe into is their sugar intake, which, unfortunately, in our societies, is way above the recommended maximum."

Premature signs of aging marching across the face, tooth decay, uncontrolled cravings for other foods and substances, problems with eyesight, heart diseases, mood swings and weight gain are the other alarming irritants that Dr El Katem lists as results of sugar addiction.

"That is why we stress that out of all the indulgent foods, curbing your appetite towards sugar will have a most profound effect on many aspects of your health and appearance," she says.

Tips offered include:

·         Regular glucose analysis for all ages

·         If necessary, reduce the sugar intake, gradually: if you normally have three spoonfuls of sugar in your daily cup of tea or coffee, start by reducing it by a quarter, then another quarter, etc. Going cold turkey is never a good idea!

·         A reduction of caffeine-loaded beverages will also decrease the sugar craving

·         Sticking to the rule of thumb of a maximum of six to seven spoonfuls per day

·         Opting for kinds of fruits that are less loaded with sugar, like apples, oranges and strawberries

·         When necessary, going for an artificial sweetener in foods and beverages could be part of the solution, although you should research the side effects of these artificial options

 

(For more Life & Style news and updates, follow us on Twitter: @AhramLifestyleor our Facebook page)

Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.