CosBeauty Magazine #85

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CosBeauty is the #BeautyAddict's guide to lifestyle, health and beauty in Australia.
In this issue:
- The Breast Report - your guide to augmentation
- Put an end to bad hair days
- 24 hour makeup, products that last
- Sex appeal - do you have it?

feature

that set people on the path of quitting

sugar. From being 40kg overweight,

he immediately started losing weight,

and kept it off, by cutting sugar

(specifically fructose) from his diet.

He claims sugar is addictive – a fact

exploited by food manufacturers –

and a rare resource to which we don’t

have an in-built ‘off switch’, meaning

we can keep eating it without feeling

full, leading to weight gain and a

myriad of health effects.

One study by Nicole Avena,

Pedro Rada and Bartley Hoebel

(2008) looked into the addictive

properties of sugar. It examined the

physiological response to sugar intake

in rats, and how the rats behaved

when ‘on’ and ‘off’ sugar.

‘Food addiction seems plausible

because brain pathways that evolved

to respond to natural rewards are also

activated by addictive drugs,’ the

report states. ‘Sugar is noteworthy as

a substance that releases opioids and

dopamine and thus might be expected

to have addictive potential.’

After a month ‘on’ sugar, the

animals showed a series of behaviours

similar to the signs of drug abuse.

‘These are categorised as ‘bingeing’,

meaning unusually large bouts of

intake, opiate-like ‘withdrawal’

indicated by signs of anxiety and

behavioural depression and ‘craving’

measured during sugar abstinence as

enhanced responding for sugar.’

Is it really

that bad?

Sugar has been linked to high

blood sugar, cardiovascular

disease mortality, diabetes and

cellular ageing.

An article published in the

online journal Open Heart

found sugars are probably more

instrumental in increasing the

risk of hypertension (high blood

pressure) and cardiovascular

disease (CVD), as compared to

dietary sodium (salt).

‘Compelling evidence from basic

science, population studies, and

clinical trials implicate sugars, and

particularly the monosaccharide

fructose, as playing a major role in

the development of hypertension,’

the researchers state. ‘Moreover,

evidence suggests that sugars in

general and fructose in particular

may contribute to overall

cardiovascular risk through a

variety of mechanisms.’

Furthermore, a study published

in the JAMA Internal Medicine

journal, conducted by researchers

at the Division for Heart Disease

and Stroke Prevention at the

Centers for Disease Control

and Prevention, associated a

high added sugar intake with a

heightened risk of CVD.

The study found that people

who consumed between 17 and 21

per cent of their daily calories from

added sugar exhibited a 38 percent

higher risk of CVD mortality,

compared to those whose added

sugar intake was maintained at

around eight percent. For those

whose daily intake of added sugar

was more than 21 percent of their

daily calories, they had double

the risk of CVD mortality. And,

in participants who consumed 25

percent of their daily calories from

added sugar, their risk of CVD

mortality was tripled.

Cellular ageing

The anti-ageing world is full of

talk about telomeres – or the

protective DNA that caps the end

of cell chromosomes. The common

consensus is the longer the telomeres,

the longer the quality of life. The

trick? Telomeres continuously shorten

as our cells replicate, getting shorter

and shorter as we age.

Ongoing research is furiously

exploring the possibilities in

lengthening telomeres to reduce the

rate of ageing or ways to prevent

their ever-persistent shortening. But

sugar, according to scientists from

the University of California-San

Francisco, is one sure-fire way to

shorten your telomeres before their

time. The research, led by Prof. Elissa

Epel, assessed 5,309 participants

and found those who drank larger

amounts of sugary soda tended to

have shorter telomeres in their white

blood cells, making them susceptible

to inflammation and chronic disease.

‘Regular consumption of sugarsweetened

sodas might influence

disease development,’ says Epel. ‘Not

only by straining the body’s metabolic

control of sugars but also through

accelerated cellular ageing of tissues.’

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