Sugar Is Responsible for Disease
- Refined sugar was not consumed on a daily basis until 100 years ago.
- Before that, it was a treat afforded by the very rich as sugar cane was a difficult crop to grow.
- In the past 100 years, rates of obesity, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and numerous other chronic diseases have skyrocketed.
When sugar and tobacco were introduced by Native Americans to Europeans as they began to settle America, the average life span was relatively short. This meant health consequences from sugar and tobacco were easily buried in the myriad of other life challenges the early settlers faced.
As early as the 1920;s, research documented the damage sugar does to the human body. To this day, tobacco continues to be a leading a cause of premature death.
Unfortunately, while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) call tobacco the leading cause of preventable death in the US, that title may really belong to sugar.
And, yet people who would never consider smoking may have little concern over the amount of sugar they eat daily.
From a nutritional standpoint, the human body does not need refined sugar. We do need glucose, the body manufactures the glucose it needs in your liver through a process called gluconeogenesis.
Get this, if you never ate another piece of candy again, you would live quite comfortably and likely in far better health.
Recent research found that the amount of sugar we eat each day should be an important consideration in your nutritional plan.
In Y 1926, German biochemist Otto Warburg observed cancer cells fermented glucose to lactic acid, even in the presence of oxygen (known as the Warburg Effect), and theorized it might be the fundamental cause of cancer.3 This led to the idea that tumor growth could be disturbed by cutting off the energy supply: Sugar.
For decades, scientists and researchers dismissed the idea, and the sugar industry backed them up.
Otto Warburg received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in Y 1931 for his work in cellular respiration and energy production. His life’s mission was to find a cure for cancer, but his findings were largely ignored by the conventional medical community as they were considered simplistic and didn’t fit the genetic model of disease that was widely accepted.
Recent research from Belgium shows there is indeed a strong link between glucose over-stimulation and mutated proteins often found inside human tumor cells, which make the cells grow faster. The study began in Y 2008, triggered by the researchers’ desire to gain a greater understanding of the Warburg Effect.
The rapid breakdown of glucose in tumor cells is not seen in healthy cells, making glucose the primary energy source for cancer.
Researcher Johan Thevelein, PhD, a molecular biologist from LU Leuven in Belgium, commented on the results of the study in a press release, saying: “Our research reveals how the hyperactive sugar consumption of cancerous cells leads to a vicious cycle of continued stimulation of cancer development and growth. Thus, it is able to explain the correlation between the strength of the Warburg effect and tumor aggressiveness.
This link between sugar and cancer has sweeping consequences. Our results provide a foundation for future research in this domain, which can now be performed with a much more precise and relevant focus.”
They point out that while they believe the presence of added sugar in your diet may increase the aggressive growth of cancer cells, their research does not prove it triggers the original mutation.
That said, previous research has shown that the genetic mutations found in cancer cells are actually a downstream effect caused by mitochondrial dysfunction, not the original cause, and excessive sugar consumption is 1 of the things that triggers mitochondrial dysfunction.
There are thousands of manufactured chemicals in our homes, cars and workplace that may cause or contribute to cell mutations.
Air pollution, personal care products, plastics and chemical treatments often contain chemicals with carcinogenic properties, and such exposures also play a role.
The mutation of a cell, fed by a daily sugar habit, may grow into cancer.
Cell mutation from sugar consumption occurs after mitochondrial damage. However, sugar also provides nutrition to cells mutated by contaminant exposure, and is required for these mutated cells to grow and multiply. As such, one’s sugar intake becomes an important factor, and 1 that you have control over.
Normally, energy is drawn from glucose through a process of oxidation that requires the presence of oxygen. But, cancer cells use a process of fermentation, even when oxygen is present, to create energy.
The process, called glycolysis, extracts less energy during the process, but requires less energy and fewer steps to get energy from glucose.
This means that even in the absence of oxygen, tumor cells can extract energy from glucose molecules. Rapid cell division of cancer cells to fuel growth requires the presence of a lot of sugar. Warburg believed a defect in the mitochondria of cancer cells allows the cells to use glycolysis to fuel growth, which suggests cancer is actually a metabolic disease that is affected by diet.
In the US an estimated 600,000 people will die from cancer this year, costing over $125-B in healthcare expenses.
The World Health Organization (WHO) finds cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death worldwide, responsible for nearly 8.8-M deaths in Y 2015.
Imagine if that many people were dying each year from the flu or polio. This would be headline news daily.
Americans have become so used to the idea of cancer that 1.6-M new cases every year in the US is old news
Conventional cancer treatment focuses on surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. However, many of these treatments have only been successful at lengthening lives somewhat and not in curing the disease.
The basis for these treatments is that cancer is a genetic problem and not 1 triggered and fed by mitochondrial dysfunction.
As a result, the nutritional link is overlooked.
The study referred to here exposes the flaw in using only pharmaceutical, surgical and radiation treatments on tumors and other cancer growths.
Otto Warburg postulated that by cutting off the food supply cancer cells rely on for survival effectively starves them.
Research has also shown that genetic mutations are not the trigger for cancer growths but rather a downstream effect resulting from defective energy metabolism in cell mitochondria. This defective energy metabolism changes the way human cells function and promotes the growth of cancer cells.
In other words, if your mitochondria remain healthy, your risk of developing cancer is slim.
Thomas Seyfried, PhD, author of “Cancer as a Metabolic Disease: On the Origin, Management and Treatment of Cancer,” has received many awards and honors through his long and illustrious career for the work he has done expanding knowledge of how metabolism affects cancer.
He is one of the pioneers in the application of nutritional ketosis for cancer.
While in nutritional ketosis, your body burns fat for fuel instead of starches and carbohydrates. By eating a healthy high-fat, low-carbohydrate and low- to moderate-protein diet, your body begins to burn fat as its primary fuel.
Research from Ohio State University demonstrates athletes who eat a ketogenic diet experience significant improvements in their health and performance.
Nutritional ketosis is also showing great promise in the treatment of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s disease, Type 2 diabetes and seizures that are unresponsive to medications.
This recent research from Belgium confirms the work Warburg, Seyfried and others have done, and supports the hypothesis that cancer is a metabolically-based disease and not a genetic problem.
Sugar is a primary factor driving the development of a number of different health conditions and chronic diseases.
Sugar contributes to several of the leading causes of death in the US, including the following:
- Heart disease
- Chronic liver disease
- Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease
While all forms of sugar are harmful when consumed in excess, processed fructose, the most commonly found sugar in processed foods appears to be the worst.
Manufacturers use the addictive property of sugar to drive sales, and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) allows them to achieve their goals at a lower price.
Although it tastes like sugar, HFCS gives your body a bigger sugar jolt.
Dr. Yulia Johnson, family medicine physician with The Iowa Clinic, comments on the use of HFCS:
“Your body processes high fructose corn syrup differently than it does ordinary sugar. The burden falls on your liver, which is not capable of keeping up with how quickly corn syrup breaks down. As a result, blood sugar spikes quicker. It’s stored as fat, so you can become obese and develop other health problems, such as diabetes, much faster.”
So, it stands to reason that if you want to live a healthier life and reduce your healthcare costs and your risk for cancer, be wise avoid refined sugar as much as possible, if not totally eliminate it from your diet.
Eating Real food, following a high-fat, low-carb, moderate-protein diet and fasting are all things you can do to optimize your health and reduce your risk of chronic disease.
I have used a ketogenic diet to stabilize my health for going on 30 years. It works for me.
Eat healthy, Be healthy, Live lively.
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