The Dangers of Added Sugars

Ever find yourself in between games looking for that quick pick me up and you reach for an energy bar or sports drink? Those snacks most likely contain sugar, which is the main ingredient responsible for a list of symptoms that hinder your performance on and off the field.

Why is it dangerous?

1.Its Addictive

    • Similar to abusive drugs, sugar releases dopamine into the brain when consumed which tricks you into thinking you are being rewarded which can be extremely addictive to most people.

2. It Affects Your Body..

«White refined sugar-is not a food. It is a pure chemical extracted from plant sources, purer in fact than cocaine, which it resembles in many ways. Its true name is sucrose and its chemical formula is C12H22O11. It has 12 carbon atoms, 22 hydrogen atoms, 11 oxygen atoms, and absolutely nothing else to offer. "The chemical formula for cocaine is C17H21NO4. Sugar's formula again is C12H22O11. For all practical purposes, the difference is that sugar is missing the «N», or nitrogen atom." -Dr. David Reuben, author of Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Nutrition
  • Sugar has no nutritional value; no minerals, no proteins, no enzymes, no fiber, no fats, ONLY empty calories.(source)
  • Sugar gives you cavities and malnourished teeth. Sugar makes blood very thick and sticky inhibiting proper blood circulation to the minute capillaries that are responsible for your gums and teeth to receive vital nutrients.(source)
  • Sugar intake increases triglycerides. Triglycerides induce leptin resistance. Leptin is responsible for telling your hypothalamus that you are full when you have eaten too much.(source)
  • Sugar has a direct link to cancer. A high sugar and fat diet cause obesity which makes your pancreas and liver go into overdrive which can cause cancer.
    • Sugar gives you wrinkles. When collagen and elastin break down from UV exposure, or other free radical exposure, cells repair themselves. But when sugar travels into the skin, it causes amino acids to form cross-links. These cross-links block the repair mechanism therefore leaving you with premature wrinkles.Researchers have also found that those who consumed a low glycemic diet had a 50% cutback in acne breakouts than those who consumed the high glycemic diets, because researchers believe that high glycemic diets fuel inflammation causing oil sebum which is a direct cause of acne.(source)source)

3. It Affects Your Mind...

  • In one study, researchers have found that high corn fructose drinkers had less activity in their satiety centers of their brain which made them feel hungrier. (source)
  • Eating sugar also makes your brain dependent on sugar. So you feel sluggish, fatigued, unfocused and even at times depressed.
"Laboratory experiments with rats showed that signs of sugar dependence developed over the course of 10 days. This suggests that it does not take long before the starve-binge behavior catches up with animals, making them dependent. There is something about this combination of heightened opioid and dopamine responses in the brain that leads to dependency. Without these neurotransmitters, the animal begins to feel anxious and wants to eat sweet food again."-Dr. Robert H.Lustig

Be on the Lookout....

Sweeteners aren't just in obvious foods like donuts, candy, and sodas. It can also be found in processed foods that contain high fructose corn syrup. Here is a list of the 56 names sugar goes by:

Barley malt
Dehydrated cane juice
Golden sugar
Barbados sugar
Demerara sugar
Golden syrup
Beet sugar
Grape sugar
Brown sugar
High fructose corn syrup
Powdered sugar
Buttered syrup
Diastatic malt
Raw sugar
Cane juice
Icing sugar
Refiner's syrup
Cane sugar
Ethyl maltol
Invert sugar
Rice syrup
Free flowing brown sugars
Corn syrup
Sorghum syrup
Corn syrup solids
Fruit juice
Confectioner's sugar
Fruit juice concentrate
Sugar (granulated)
Carob syrup
Malt syrup
Castor sugar
Turbinado sugar
Date sugar
Glucose solids
Maple syrup


All of this information might seem overwhelming but the most important equipment you will have out on the field is your body and it is important to keep it healthy so you can achieve your peak performance!

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