It’s time to let the sweet stuff go and live a life full of sugar-free fun…

We all know that sugar is bad for our teeth, but what about its effect on our health, skin and stress levels? Described as a “legal drug” by nutritionist and wellness warrior, Kris Carr, sugar may just be one of the most addictive and deadly killers out there. It works silently by alluring it’s victims into a false sense of sugary security (the sugar high) and then quietly but quickly plunges them into the depths of darkness of exhaustion, spots, stress and craving some more so that they can feel great again… sound like a drug now? We thought so.

You need only to look at the statistics to realise the horrid impact that sugar can have on our health. High sugar consumption is one of the most important and prominent risk factors of diabetes. A Harvard study recently reported that women who drank one or more sugar-sweetened soft drinks per day were 83 percent more likely to develop type two diabetes than women who drank less than one a month. And get this – sugar is also hidden everywhere – did you know that a 12-ounce can of cola has the equivalent of 10 teaspoons of sugar in it in the form of things like high-fructose corn syrup or HFCS – all code words for sugar.

So another year rolls by and somehow we all manage to consume even more of the sweet stuff than the year before, which makes us want it more. Make this the year that you say no to sugar. Once cut out, it’s amazing how quickly the body adjusts and no longer craves it. Suddenly you will find things like apples a haven of super sweetness and dried fruit will be almost too sweet for most.

Not totally convinced that you could have better, healthier (not to mention way hotter) lives if you ditch sugar for 2013. Here are a few more reasons:

Sugar hates our skin
When you are just about to consume a sugary sweet looking cupcake, please pause for a second and take a moment for your skin. As soon as you eat this innocent looking pink spongy thing just know that the sugar will enter your blood stream quickly, rapidly causing your blood sugar levels to go up. The sugar will then attach itself to collagen (the stuff that makes our skin look lovely and young) in a process called glycation which in turn makes the skin stiff and inflexible and yes aged! This is a sure-fire way to increase the amount of wrinkles you have. That sort of thing is irreversible. Not so keen to eat the pink, sweet cupcake now? Didn’t think so.

It makes us ill
Sugar puts a major strain on the immune system making us more susceptible to catching things like colds, coughs, or worse.

It fuels cancer
Cancer cells love sugar. They eat it up – literally – and it helps them grow, multiply and dominate. Cancer cells have a metabolism much higher than that of normal cells so they are extremely hungry and they need the sweet stuff in order to gain energy. In Kriss Carr’s book Crazy Sexy Diet, she explains how for those with any doubt about cancer cells and their love of sugar need only to consider how a PET scan works. Patients are injected with a tiny amount of radioactive glucose (sugar) and the test measures the parts of the body that absorb the most glucose to show them where the cancer is. As soon as the sugar reaches the cancer cells, the cancer cells start munching away causing them to light up like fireworks and showing the examiner exactly where the cancer is.

It makes us fat
Balancing your blood sugar levels is one of the most important factors in keeping your weight in check, as the level of glucose in your blood largely determines your appetite. When your level drops (like that experienced after eating something sugary) you feel hungary causing you to eat more. And probably more sugary rubbish at that. Not cool.