Archive for Sugar

Health – Low Soda (Pop) Intake

Posted in Food, Health with tags , , , on 2015/07/03 by rmolby

Are you trying to lose weight?

The first thing you should do is increase your water intake and reduce your sugary drink intake!

Let me elaborate on this though process.

I am speaking from a Standard American Diet (SAD) standpoint, but this should hold true for most “industrialized” diets. And by diet, I don’t mean the diet fads, but diet as in what we consume on a daily basis.

So, if you look at how many time people eat out these days, the most common thing you see consumed is sugary drinks, your soda, pop, juice, sports drinks, etc.

Want something cold to drink?

“That’ll be $1.08 ma’am/sir” the reply comes from the broken fast food drive-through speaker, announcing to you are about to get a 32oz or 1 liter Coke or Sprite.

I see this multiple times a day myself, including in my own family.

I have been doing research on the subject of sugar for some time now, and it is becoming increasingly clear that sugar, while it has played a major role in nutrition since we as a species starting eating, our bodies evolved to only consume sugars for short periods of time during late summer and fall to propagate plants by spreading seeds.

Our bodies are designed to run on two fuels, fat and sugar, with sugar being mostly available in abundance in fruit for only a short period during the year, while minor amounts are available in certain vegetables that are available for longer periods of time of the year, and some of which can be store for several months, such as fall squash.

However, the preferred fuel for the body is fat. Why do you think that our bodies convert surplus sugar into fat in the liver?

Before refined sugar became so universally available, the sugar surplus of fall fruit could not be all used at once, and our bodies developed ways to convert the sugar to fat and store it in different parts of the body for later use, especially to carry us through winter if living in temperate climates. This took a long time for our bodies to get used to, probably 10’s of thousands if not millions of years of evolution.

Refined sugars have only been around for about 2000 years, and only in the last 200 or so, the refined white sugars have become cheaply available. And the recent advent of man-made sugars such as High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) are only recent developments of the last 50-75 years. So the sugar epidemic is just now really coming to the surface.

Our bodies forgo health to store the surplus sugar as fat, because it is the sucrose the liver can turn into fat quickly to be stored all over the body, and the fructose is stored in the liver itself as a different type of fat due to different way of processing this particular sugar. However, it doesn’t matter if the sugar is white, lacking minerals, or raw and still has some of the minerals in it. The liver only processes the sugars themselves.

If by chance the stomach is able to get any minerals or nutrients from the raw sugar, it is not much. So the body gets virtually no other nutrition from sugar other than to be able to process it into fat. Basically it is like giving your car low octane fuel all the time, eventually it will tear up the engine – same with the body, it will start pulling needed metabolic nutrients from your tissues and bones.

So, since your body doesn’t sense there are any nutrients in the refined sugars we feed ourselves all day long, it just thinks, oh well, I’ll store it as fat and figure out what to do with all the fat later… our bodies are in eternal “store fat for winter” mode. So it is no wonder we have a civilization of obese people!

So, what is the solution?

Water

The best thing you can do for your health is to start drinking water.

If you are one of those people that cannot stand still water, whether at room temperature, cool out of the pipe, or cold from the refrigerator, then maybe you should try carbonated mineral water.

I personally was one of those people that could drink ice cold still water, but only in small amounts. So, in order for me to start getting more water into my system, I started to take sips of still room temperature or cold water, followed by whatever sugary drink I was having at the time.

This made it easy for me to increase the amount of water I was getting. Slowly at first until I got into the habit of taking a sip of water EVERY time I felt like I needed to drink something, even just to get my mouth wet. In time, my sugary drink intake declined when I just needed sip to wet my lips, and I increasingly had a bottle of water at the ready for this purpose.

As more time progressed, I would drink more and more water and less sugary drink, and now, about 1-2 years into the process, I only carry water with me in my vehicle, and virtually all my sugary drink consumption is from taking sips from my wife’s Dr. Pepper or Sprite when I am out of water or she is holding the cup out to me.

Just doing this one simple trick, my weight has gone from the 195-205 lbs (~88-93 Kg) range to about 189-192 lbs (~86 Kg), no extra exercise, not hardly any other changes in my diet.

I have noticed a marked decrease in sugary cravings, and as such I now eat less sweets, which should accelerate my weight-loss a bit more, yet.

So, to wrap up with rather long post, you can do yourself and your body a favor by cutting out the sugary drinks of all types, and gain back a tremendous amount of feeling good about yourself.

P.S. I will be editing this post by adding reference materials as I find time to do so.

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Bread baking – second loaf

Posted in Baking, Entertainment, Food, Health, Home, Liberty with tags , , , , , , on 2013/07/27 by rmolby
English: Baked with love using a personal brea...

English: Baked with love using a personal bread making machine. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

OK, so after my first attempt of making bread in the bread maker, I decided to modify the recipe a little based on some tips from my dad. Here is the recipe:

  • ½ cup warm milk
  • ½ cup warm filtered water
  • 1.5 tbsp. butter
  • ½ tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1.5 tsp. Himalayan salt
  • 3.5 cups flour (I can’t find my scale, yet)
  • 1 tbsp. organic sugar
  • ¾ tbsp. honey
  • 2 tbsp. bread machine yeast

Per machine instructions in the manual, I added all the wet ingredients, but this time I mixed the sugar and honey into the milk/water mixture, and mixed the room temp egg and butter into that once the sugar was dissolved, then added the flour on top, made the hole for yeast and added that, put a pinch of sugar on top of the yeast and lightly mixed the yeast and a little surrounding flour, selected the French bread mode, and let her rip.

All went well, and it rose awesome the first rising, then I ran my errands, and when I got back it was in baking mode, and the top was collapsed… I wonder if it’s my flour, maybe?

It’s Gold label organic all-purpose flour, so I wonder if that is causing the bread to not hold it’s shape?

Anyway, not sure what the problem is, yet, but I’ll figure it out.

Fructose metabolism

Posted in Food, Health, Nature with tags , , , , , , , , , on 2012/06/12 by rmolby
High Fructose Corn Syrup

High Fructose Corn Syrup (Photo credit: Food Thinkers)

This post is part of my health research on my own weight and health problems. Part of fixing my health issues is learning how the human body processes or digests food and food-like substances; there is a single word describing this process: metabolism.

Anyway, in relation to the previous post, the first thing I was interested in is how the human metabolism deals with simple carbohydrates, like high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), honey, and sugar, etc/.

So the way I understand it, when we digest plain sugars, such as sucrose (white table sugar) or honey, they pass through the stomach almost unchanged and go into the small intestine where the enzyme sucrase splits the sugar into its glucose and fructose component.

HFCS on the other hand, being a man-made product, doesn’t have strong bonds between the glucose and fructose molecules, and can be broken down easily in the small intestine.

The now available glucose is absorbed by the intestine, and transported directly to the blood as energy source, and all excess glucose is sent to the liver to be processed into glycogen. At the same time that glucose level rise, so do insulin levels, when a certain threshold of glucose is reached the hormone ghrelin drops off, signaling to the brain to stop consuming carbohydrates.

Fructose on the other hand is also absorbed by the small intestine, but to a lesser extend and using a slightly different process, and very few tissues in the human body are able to utilize fructose. What fructose is not absorbed by the small intestine is sent on to the large intestine to be fermented there into hydrogen and carbon dioxide.

What fructose is absorbed by the small intestine is transported directly to the liver to be processed by fructokinase, using phosphate, and is further metabolized into different compounds.

The metabolism of fructose at this point can lead to glycogen synthesis as well as fatty acid and triglyceride synthesis. Glycogen is the first compound that is produced, once the liver has a sufficient level of glycogen, it will begin to produce triglycerides, and finally, fatty acids.

Hence, when we consume anything that contains fructose, whether it be honey, sugar or HFCS, our triglyceride and fatty acid levels rise.

The triglycerides are then incorporated into very low density lipoproteins (VLDL, the “bad” cholesterol), which are released from the liver for storage in both fat and muscle cells.

During the entire process of metabolizing fructose, the hormone ghrelin never goes down in level or intensity, so the brain does not get any indication to stop consuming carbohydrates, causing us to continue to consume carbs, which gives us more fructose, which causes more triglyceride and fatty acid, still not dropping ghrelin, and cycle continues.

So there we go, fructose makes us fat, and it doesn’t matter if it comes from HFCS, honey or sugar. So the generalization we hear, sugar is sugar appears to be reasonable after all. The only difference is that HFCS absorbs into the intestine faster than sugar or honey, because it does not have to be broken down into glucose and fructose by the enzymatic process.

Is sugar toxic?

Posted in Food, Health, Nature with tags , , , , , , , , on 2012/06/06 by rmolby
Image representing New York Times as depicted ...

Image via CrunchBase

Well, this sux, I posted the article I just spent one hour writing, and it’s all gone… reason unknown. So, I will try to recreate what I typed but it will not be the same as what I had written before.

Even though I have not had much time to devote to blogging or such, I was able to spend some quiet time in the mornings reading a little on the (slow AT&T air card driven) internet. One such article is by Gary Taubes, titled Is sugar toxic? and published in 2011 on the NY Times web site.

Even though there hasn’t been much time to devote to the blog, I felt I needed to mention the article so you, my readers can read the article, as well, and let the information sink in.

Over the next few weeks I plan to making a series of posts addressing some of the subjects mentioned in the article, and if you have any interest in reading more on a certain subject, leave comments on this post or any subsequent ones, and if they relate to my own needs, I will further research them and publish my findings in additional posts.

What has prompted me to post this is that I am overweight, I have the typical male “beer gut” (also known these days as the “wheat gut”), but after reading Gary’s article in the NY Times, I’m think we should call it “fructose gut!”

I want to say that anything I mention here on my blog about my health, and what I am doing to repair my body and restore my health is only for me. It is not medical advice, and if you decide to try anything I do, please connsult your health practitioner first.

I am by no means a health professional, but I can read, and my comprehension level of these subjects is quite good, since I grew up eating healthy, semi-organic back in Germany during my childhood, and have only descended to my current health state after moving to North America, and especially these last 10 years or so.

So, talk to your doctor or nutritionist, but do your own research, don’t trust anyone, everyone has their own slant on health, and only you really know how you feel, even your health practitioner can only guess what you feel. It’s your body, take care of it and it will take care of you.

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