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Three Ways Refined Carbohydrates Lead to Weight Gain and Poor Health

The warning against the supposed dangers of saturated fats has resulted in the higher consumption of refined carbohydrates. Whole foods like meats, butter, and eggs have been replaced with low-fat alternatives. These alternatives haven’t improved the health climate, but have instead caused more disease. In spite of lower amounts of dietary fat, diseases like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and obesity continue to increase.

High Fructose Corn Syrup Consumption Leads to Diabetes

High fructose corn syrup is positively associated with the growing number of type 2 diabetes patients. In 2004, The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition published a study that revealed a correlation between high amounts of corn syrup, low amounts of fiber, and the increase in diabetes. Protein and fat had no discernible effect.

Labels displaying ingredients of high fructose corn syrup and low fiber are common in processed foods. They offer the benefits of a long shelf life with a low cost.

Sugar, which is half fructose and half glucose, poses a threat that is just as dangerous as high fructose corn syrup. There is a tendency to think that sugar is “natural” as opposed to industrialized corn syrup, but sugar that is found in nature is contained in fruit, which also includes fiber and micronutrients that help curb the toxic effects of its fructose.

Refined Wheat Products Elevate Blood Glucose Levels

Refined grains pose a serious health threat. Marketing techniques are sneaky and sway people into believing that they are eating foods that are nutritious.

Research shows that refined carbohydrates, like wheat, provide an environment ripe for disease. Wheat contains a type of carbohydrate that is easy to digest. When it is digested, glucose quickly enters the bloodstream. Blood glucose levels rise and increase your risk of disease. This is true of whole grain as well.

Destructive molecules called advanced glycation end products (AGEs) thrive in a high blood glucose environment. AGEs cause many of the complications that occur in diabetes, and they affect everyone to some degree.

Low density lipoprotein (LDL) oxidizes and becomes very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) in the wake of AGE production. This leads to plaque buildup in the arteries. Measurements of AGE concentrations in body tissue can determine the extent of plaque formation.

Refined Carbohydrates Increase Calorie Consumption and Promote Weight Gain

In study after study, low carbohydrate diets prove to be an effective way to lose weight. Cut refined carbohydrates out of your diet in order to remove most of your caloric intake. Those who follow a low-carb diet consume fewer calories on average. Refined carbohydrates are not satiating: wheat is an appetite stimulant, fructose doesn’t suppress the hunger-producing hormone ghrelin, and sugar is an addictive substance. Foods that contain these ingredients cause hunger, cravings, and the tendency to overeat.

Include nutritious carbohydrates that are contained in vegetables and fruits, and remove refined foods from your diet. These are effective ways to reduce your risk of disease while maintaining a healthy weight.

 

Resources:

Liu, Simin. “A Prospective Study of Dietary Glycemic Load, Carbohydrate Intake, and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in US Women.” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 71.6 (2000): 1455-461. Print.

Gross, Lee S. “Increased Consumption of Refined Carbohydrates and the Epidemic of Type 2 Diabetes in the United States: An Ecologic Assessment.” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 79.5 (2004): 774-79. Print.

Jakobsen, M. U., C. Dethlefsen, A. M. Joensen, J. Stegger, A. Tjonneland, E. B. Schmidt, and K. Overvad. “Intake of Carbohydrates Compared with Intake of Saturated Fatty Acids and Risk of Myocardial Infarction: Importance of the Glycemic Index.” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 91.6 (2010): 1764-768. Print.

Stitt, A. W., and Et Al. “Elevated AGE-modified ApoB in Sera of Euglycemic, Normolipidemic Patients with Atherosclerosis: Relationship to Tissue AGEs.” Molecular Medicine 3.9 (1997): 617-27. Print.

Westman, Eric C., and Et Al. “Low-carbohydrate Nutrition and Metabolism.” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 86.2 (2007): 276-84. Print.

The Endocrine Society. “Fructose consumption increases risk factors for heart disease: Study suggests US Dietary Guideline for upper limit of sugar consumption is too high.” ScienceDaily, 28 Jul. 2011. Web. 5 Apr. 2012.

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