Happy October!

We’ve officially entered fall, and don’t we know it…it’s getting darker a little earlier and there’s Halloween candy EVERYWHERE! Though goblins, ghosts, and vampires make for scary stories, the real monster to be aware of is sugar.

Within the last century, there’s been a growing pandemic of elevated blood sugar levels which is wreaking havoc on our bodies. 200 years ago, the average American consumed around 10 pounds of sugar per year. Today the average American consumes around 160 pounds of sugar per year. That’s the same as the average adult female!

Why do we need to worry about sugar intake? Other than the fact that it’s highly addictive, sugar intake affects our ability to maintain blood sugar balance. When we continue to bombard our bodies with sugar (glucose), we end up with overworked PALs (pancreas, adrenals, and liver) and excess glucose in the bloodstream. If this goes unchecked, it can lead to Insulin Resistance, Type 2 Diabetes, or other diseases. It shortens the lifespan, enables degenerative disease, affects mental health and well-being, and reduces the overall quality of life. Yikes! Talk about scary!

Unfortunately, sugar is hidden in all kinds of foods, and it’s extremely important to read labels and learn ways to limit intake, but we have a tendency to overeat obvious sugars too. Sweets are commonly used as rewards, comfort, and meal replacements. Halloween is an especially devilish time of year when stuffing ourselves and our children with “snack size” candies is not only accepted but encouraged. How can you make a difference this Halloween? Themed school supplies (such as pencils and pencil top erasers), temporary tattoos, and small toys are just a few examples of sugar-free treats you can offer your kids this season. If tricks are more your style then toothbrushes make for a great Halloween offering too! 🙂

Shelby O’Hagan, Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (NTP)
Rebel Yum Nutrition