How is Dietary Sugar Making Your Children Obese?

Unhealthy sugar with spoon and fork impression

There was this great health documentary called Fed Up that came out in 2014. It brought to the masses’ attention that the initial dietary guidelines issued by the US government completely ignored the fact that dietary sugar could exponentially increase the risk of diabetes and obesity in children.

Owing to the fact that these guidelines clearly condoned the addition of sugar in foods, children ended up consuming sugar in epic proportions. As a result, American kids are growing up to be fatter than their older generations, proving that obesity has indeed become an epidemic in the United States. But that’s not the only problem caused by dietary sugar. It’s also reducing the lifespan of children.

This article explores how dietary sugar is making children obese. Here are 4 plausible theories.

1- High Insulin Levels

Insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, regulates energy usage and metabolism. When you eat high carb meal or processed food that has lots of sugar in it, the glucose level in your body goes up and as a result insulin level also goes up, trying to cleanse glucose from your bloodstreams by getting it into the cells. Insulin also makes the fat cells to collect fat from the blood and store it. When you have high insulin levels in your blood, most of your energy gets stored by the fat cells, leading your brain to think that you’re hungry. And this makes you eat more unnecessarily.

Health equipment to monitor blood sugar levels

2- Leptin Resistance

Leptin is a hormone produced by fat cells. A diet that has high fructose content can make your brain leptin resistant. When you consume a diet rich in fructose, it increases triglycerides in your blood and blocks the supply of leptin to your brain. As a result, your brain thinks that your body is starving and makes you eat more even if there’s no need to.

3- Fructose-Rich Diet Doesn’t Satisfy Hunger

There is a hormone in the human body called ghrelin. The more ghrelin you have in your body, the more hungry you tend to feel. As it turns out, a fructose-rich diet does not reduce the blood levels of ghrelin as a glucose-rich diet does. It means fructose does not satisfy your hunger in the same way as glucose does, making you consume more calories.

4- Sugar Makes You an Addict

Jars of unhealthy candy on a shelf

Sugar is so powerful that it can make a human body addicted to it. According to medical experts, this addiction is tantamount to drug addiction. As a result of this addiction, a human body tends to consume more and more sugar-rich food that makes you gain weight.

As the connection between high sugar diet and deteriorating health has come into notice, people have started to become aware that the sugar in processed foods is one of the leading reasons why obesity is increasing at an unprecedented rate in the United States. Stephanie Soechtig’s documentary, Fed Up, also brings into attention the financial lobbying done by the sugar industry to fend off the attempts by parents and schools in Congress to provide healthier and nutritional diet for children in the United States.