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How Sugar and Sugar Cravings Affect Your Body

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 08/30/2023

We all know that sugar is a part of the human diet. But what many people do not know is that all sugar is not created equal. There are many types of sugar.

Refined Sugar

Refined sugar is made from sugar cane, which actually has a lot of good nutrition in its original form. However, when sugar is processed and refined, all of that good nutrition is basically taken out. The nutritious part of sugar cane is called molasses. This is usually sold as a separate product. The problem with refined sugar is that not only has the nutrition been depleted from it in the refining process, but when the sugar is consumed, it also depletes nutrients from your own system. This can result in water retention. Other problems resulting from overconsumption of refined sugar include low potassium levels, blood sugar issues and even sleep disturbances.

Natural Sugar

When you hear the term 'natural sugar', it can mean one of two things. It could mean refined sugar with a little molasses mixed in, or it could refer to Tubinado. Turbinado is raw sugar cane which retains a little more of its original nutrition and would be considered the least of the evils.

Honey and Stevia

Honey is a good alternative to help you transition between consuming large amounts of refined sugar and cutting back. You may still need to monitor your consumption of this type of sugar. Stevia is the best sugar alternative. It is plant-based and will have the least negative effect on your health.

Changing Your Taste Buds

What many people discover after a few weeks of no sugar, is that their taste buds begin to adapt and their bodies no longer crave sugar like it did in the past. While you are trying to cut back on the amount of sugar you consume, be on the watch for hidden sugars. There are often hidden sugars in low-fat products such as yogurts. Fruit juices are also a hidden source of high sugar content. While trying to purge your body of these sugars, cut out all refined sugar, fruit juice, and alcohol. Your cravings will slowly subside. Most sugar cravings are actually potassium cravings. To fight this potassium craving, you need to really up the amount of vegetables, especially the greens that you consume.

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