Low Sugar Marmalade

Nowadays, sugar is added to many foods available on the market. It has been found that we consume more and more sugar every year, and this is connected with the occurrence of modern chronic diseases.

Are we really aware of why it is important to select foods with lower sugar content, why we have to use less sugar in the preparation of our food, even though our taste buds tell us otherwise? What is the importance of choosing foods with lower sugar content amidst the avalanche of foods with high sugar content? Natureta offers us this opportunity. Their marmalades and jams with lower sugar content offer us a healthy and safe way to enjoy sweet food.

In past centuries, we have seen drastic changes in the way people consume food, and one of the prominent ones is the obvious greater consumption of sugar. Since 1800, when people consumed only 5 kg of sugar per year, this quantity increased to 70 kg of consumed sugar per year up to 2006. On average an individual gains between 5 and 20% of total caloric value only from added sugar through everyday diet.

Consuming too large a quantity of sugar predominantly influences our health. It can lead to an increased body mass and increase the chances for the occurrence of many chronic diseases, e.g. metabolic disturbances, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. To improve health politics and reduce the occurrence of chronic disease as a result of sugar consumption, the World Health Organization issued a new manual. In it it stated that the quantities of consumed added sugar should decrease to less than 5% of added consumed calories.

Consuming foods with lower sugar content is thus important for everyone who is and wishes to remain healthy, however it is even more important for those who are already experiencing some health related issues. Those suffering from diabetes need to be especially careful about their sugar consumption. In 2012, there were 99,300 persons in Slovenia registered as taking medication for lowering blood pressure. 45% of these were younger than 65. The occurrence of diabetes was higher in men than in women. The number of patients treated for diabetes increased in recent years by about 4000 persons per year, which amounts to a 5% annual increase. Persons with diabetes should adopt a more healthy diet, and should not consume large additional quantities of carbohydrates and sugars – this means that for them, choosing everyday foods in the stores is that much harder. Foods that are especially suited to patients with diabetes are scarce or more expensive.

Therefore the availability of foods with lower added sugar content is more than welcome, as these make choosing and preparation of everyday meals, suitable for these patients, that much easier. People who are noticing the first changes that are the result of an unhealthy lifestyle and overweight people should also strive to consume less sugar. These groups may experience metabolic disturbances and inflammatory conditions that most people are sadly unaware of until they are expressed as illnesses. One of the most common problems overweight persons face is the metabolic syndrome. It expresses as abdominal obesity, insulin resistance (the resistance of body to insulin), high blood glucose, dysplidemia and high blood pressure. Insulin resistance is a condition where tissues are not able to have a normal response to insulin. After a meal is consumed, our system dissolves complex carbohydrates and sugars into simple sugars (glucose). Glucose then enters the bloodstream and the pancreas responds by releasing insulin, which regulates the transfer of glucose from blood into cells, where it dissolves or gets stored. If our energy input in the form of carbohydrates, sugars and fats is increased for several years, our level of insulin in time also becomes permanently elevated. Our cells become insensitive to insulin and only small amounts of glucose can be transferred from the blood. This expresses as a permanently high blood glucose. Initial insulin resistance with a long-term high blood glucose may cause the development of type 2 diabetes.

Great and long-term input of sugars and saturated fats from an unsuitable diet may cause elevated levels of blood cholesterol and fats, which are closely linked to high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases. Research has shown that high blood pressure increases the risk of coronary heart disease three to four times and the risk of stroke seven times.

We can influence our health and well-being ourselves. We need to change our lifestyle, adapt our diet to a healthier one and decrease the quantity of consumed food that may cause issues in the long-term. We also need to increase our physical activity.

Products with lower sugar content, prepared in Natureta, are a suitable choice and efficient help in establishing a more healthy and regulated lifestyle. Both for those who already have some health issues and for those who are free of them and want stay that way.

Lea Lukšič

 

SOURCES:

Kendig. M. D. 2014. Cognitive and behavioural effects of sugar consumption in rodents. Appetite, 80: 41-54.

Tappy l. 2012. Toxic effects of sugar. Should we be afraid of fructose? BMC Biology, 10: 1186-1741.

World Health Organization (2014, 5 March). Draft guideline. Sugars intake for adults and children.

Ministry of Health of the Republic of Slovenia. Highlights of the National Conference on Diabetes Control – Achievements 2010–2013, The Road Ahead, November 14 2013.