Signs Your Body Is Telling You to Kick Your Sugar Habit
As a popular ingredient in many foods, sucrose (table sugar) is everywhere. Besides the usual players like cakes, cookies, candy, soft drinks, and other sugar-sweetened beverages, sucrose is added to ketchup, bread, crackers, peanut butter, soups, cereals, salad dressings, and tomato sauce.
It’s no wonder the average American consumes roughly 17 teaspoons of table sugar per day, when the recommendation is 12 teaspoons.
Foods with sucrose may taste good, but they don’t always make life sweeter. In fact, your body has a way of cluing you in that enough is enough.
How good are you at reading body language? Here are three major signs your body is telling you to knock off the sweet stuff.
1. You feel gassy and bloated after eating something sweet.
It’s normal to pass gas a dozen or so times a day, but if you notice a pattern of regularly passing gas after eating certain foods, such as desserts, fruits, and even vegetables high in sugar, such as carrots, it may be time to cut out foods high in sucrose.
Gas and bloating can be your body’s way of indicating that you may have Sucrose Intolerance caused by Congenital Sucrase-Isomaltase Deficiency (CSID).
With this rare disorder, your body can’t properly digest foods containing sucrose because your digestive tract lacks or doesn’t produce enough of two enzymes, sucrase and isomaltase, to get the job done.
Consequently, if you have CSID and eat a food containing sucrose, your small intestine won’t be able to break the complex sugar into a simpler form your body can use. So, instead of being absorbed in the small intestine like it should, undigested sucrose keeps moving to the large intestine in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract. There it mixes with bacteria that naturally reside in the large intestine and ferments. Fermentation is a process that produces mostly two gasses: hydrogen and carbon dioxide, but occasionally also methane, depending on the types of bacteria present in the large intestine that are driving the fermentation. These gasses are the cause of the bloating and gas associated with CSID.
Sucrose is everywhere. Check out this guide for more information on foods containing sucrose and how to use your diet to pinpoint symptoms and kick your sugar habit.
2. You often experience stomach pain after eating.
If you often experience stomach pain after eating something sweet – even fruits and vegetables, such as apples, apricots, pink grapefruit, oranges, peaches, pineapple, and vegetables like sweet potatoes, it’s another sign you may need to curb your sucrose habit because you may have CSID.
Frequent bouts of stomach pain can signal that sucrose isn’t being digested properly.
3. Watery diarrhea is a common occurrence.
Chronic, watery diarrhea is a symptom of CSID and a clue that your sugar habit should come to an end.
When you can’t digest sucrose properly because you have CSID, consumed food moves more slowly through the stomach during digestion than it should. However, as it moves through the GI tract, it speeds up. As consumed food passes from the small to the large intestine, where stool is formed, it moves too quickly for the normal reabsorption of water to occur.
This change in gastrointestinal transit time is one of the reasons why having CSID can result in loose stools and watery diarrhea. The other reason is that sugary food in the large intestine draws in excess water by a process called osmosis, also creating watery diarrhea.
If you have symptoms of CSID, such as gas, bloating, diarrhea, and stomach pain after eating, taking this quiz can help you find out if you have CSID. Then, schedule an appointment with your doctor to get some answers.
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