With Easter looming it’s not hard to see how, but just what is your self-induced sugar coma really doing to your body (and waistline)?
In the spirit of the upcoming religious holiday, let's be totally honest. Just how many Lindt bunnies and Cadbury Creme Eggs have you scoffed mindlessly at your desk/on your lounge this week already? This does lead us to ask the question of the impact of said binge-eating behaviour. What exactly does all this excess sugar do to our system? Let me explain "The rush of sugar into the bloodstream will stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas - this is the body's way of dealing with sugar by trying to use it as energy." So far, so textbook. But here's the uncomfortable bit. "Of course, the sugar that comes from heavy bingeing cannot really be used effectively - unless you follow it up by running a marathon - so what isn't used is then sent to the liver to be stored as fat,". Moreover, regular sugar binges place increasing demand on your insulin levels which can lead to a system that's less efficient, eventually causing what's known as insulin resistance - or as I say, "the precursor to diabetes." Niiiiice.
We know the obvious choice here is to abstain from sugar altogether, but let's get real - it's Easter and chocolate is everywhere. So, what to do if you've pigged out and a marathon is out of the question? "Engaging in exercise will prompt the body to use some of the sugar as energy,". Or, try counteracting the sugar with some high-quality proteins and fat – I suggest some nuts, a boiled egg or a piece of cheese. "This may slow down the release of sugar into the bloodstream, reducing the sugar 'high' or 'rush', thus preventing the associated 'crash down' later on." And as an added bonus, the protein and fat will work to keep you satisfied and hopefully prevent a round two of demolishing that chocolate Lindt bunny.
And if you're the type who prescribes to the 'eat now, pay later' mantra of health and fitness, we have some good news for you: it is possible to make up for the pig-out post-Easter. "Our bodies are pretty forgiving". "Ditch the sugar, include protein and fat at all meals and snacks and get regular exercise and you will recover from an Easter binge fairly quickly. That being said, a long-term high-sugar diet does serious damage and will require much more work to stabilise and repair, so make it a one off!"
All of these suggestions above will help reduce the negative effects of our extreme sugar indulgence, but do you want to know what the ‘optimal’ solution is?! Don’t eat the eggs. Wait a minute, stay with me! There are people who need those eggs more than you and we’ve found them at Ronald McDonald House Charity, Manchester Royal Children’s Hospital.
This Easter we’re collecting all those eggs to give to children less fortunate than our own. Your donation will mean the world to these children who rarely receive anything.
Please pop into the gym to make your donation.
JWC Health & Fitness