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How well do you manage your sugar intake?

This week we are celebrating sugar awareness week! This week is dedicated to raising awareness of the effect sugar has on the body, in-particularly if too much is consumed. The focus of the week this year is mainly around snacks and how this contributes to a person’s daily intake of sugar.

We want to help increase awareness, particular as high sugar intake is proven to have an adverse effect on recovery from injury and surgeries.

How much sugar should I have?

The recommendations for limits on added sugars vary among industry groups. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020–2025, which are published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture, recommend limiting calories from added sugars to no more than 10 percent each day. For someone who consumes 2,000 calories a day, that’s a maximum of about 12 teaspoons worth.

The American Heart Association, however, they recommend that limiting the amount of daily added sugars to no more than 100 calories for women and children and 150 calories for men. That works out to be about 6 teaspoons for women and children and 9 teaspoons for men.

Both groups agree that toddlers and infants under 2 shouldn’t consume any added sugars.

What impact can high sugar intakes have?

A sugar intake that is too high for long periods of time could leave individuals at risk of the following:

  • Heart disease or heart attack

  • Stroke

  • Kidney damage

  • Nerve damage

  • Eye damage

  • Skin problems

Increased sugar levels can be a huge contributor to an individual’s weight gain. This can lead to further complications such as joint pain, due to a very common link between increased weight and conditions such as osteoarthritis. The effect sugar has on energy levels is then likely to see further complications, such as low energy, will likely see a reduction in exercise activity, resulting in additional weight gain.

Studies have also shown that sugar can be responsible for behaviours such as low mood, low energy levels and bloating. It's clear to see how this then influences a person’s ability to recover from injury or maintain appropriate exercise levels.

Perhaps more concerning is the recent evidence to suggest people are aware of the effects of high sugar levels but due to convenience and financial reasons to name a few, they will continue to consume these types of food/drinks.

How can exercise management can help combat change?

The re.flex sensors can assist in providing routine for patients that may struggle to find time for exercise. The fact you can train from home allows patients to maintain a regular exercise routine whilst being held accountable by the application and physiotherapists who monitor daily progression. It is proven that significant lifestyle changes such as regular exercise can prevent conditions such as osteoarthritis through reduction in weight gain.

"I’ve lost a lot of weight in the last three years. About three and half stone to date. It’s the first time in my life I’ve been able to lose weight without struggling. I started by controlling my late night munchies and as I saw results I moved to intermittent fasting".

Read about how one of our patients were able to transform her lifestyle through exercise and diet management - here.

Completing regular exercises holds further importance to some of the patient groups mentioned above, who may find it difficult to be able to cut down on their sugar levels. Therefore, regular exercise that is monitored by a healthcare professional can help put a plan in place so that the patient can build towards a strategy that works for them that they can stick to.



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