November 18, 2018

Why Are Natural Sugars Better Than Refined Sugars?

Ask The Doctor > Nutrition > Why Are Natural Sugars Better Than Refined Sugars?

Sugar and sweetness form a delicious part of our diet. However, we often take in more sugary foods than we know. Most of the sugar that are used in the preparation of these food items are made from highly refined sugar that gives only fat and carbohydrates and no other vitamins or minerals. These blank sugars are not healthy and taking them in excessive quantities on a daily basis is not good for our long term health. Instead of taking the refined sugar you have to give preference to natural sugars as they have exceptional nutritional value compared to refined sugars.

What Are Natural Sugars

Natural sugars are the ones that we get from fruits, vegetables and other plant-based sources. These are commonly found as fructose though these are available as sucrose and glucose also. They are called natural sugars as they occur on their own and not processed or manipulated by human beings.

Key Sources of Natural Sugar

These sugars are found mostly in fruits to give them the sweet taste. Many of the fruits and vegetables we include in our diet always have certain amounts of sugar. For instance, carrots have higher amounts of natural sugar and plants like beets, cabbage and potatoes contain natural sugars. Sugar is produced by plants as a by-product of photosynthesis and stored as sucrose in their produce. When these veggies are eaten by humans, they are absorbed into the body during the digestion process.

Foods Containing Natural Sugars

As natural sugars have plants as their sources, most of the natural sugars are found in vegetables and fruits we normally take in as a part of our diet. Some of the foods that you can find natural sugars include

• Apples
• Honey
• Bananas
• Agave Nectar
• Pine Apples
• Carrots
• Beets
• Yogurt
• Prunes
• Whole Wheat Bread

Apart from these, you can find natural sugars in everything. However, the amount of natural sugar varies in all natural foods we eat of course.

Why Natural Sugars are Good for Us?

Natural sugar found in foods is good for us in many more ways than the regular processed refined sugar. This is due to the fact that natural sugars come directly from plant sources and we take them in their natural state without processing or refining. Due to this, these sugars are available with a higher balance of other nutrients like vitamins, minerals and amino acids. On the other hand, the refining process to which the other forms of sugar are subjected to, takes away all other nutrients and leaves them without any nutritional value, adding only fat to our bodies and causing many health problems. Hence, natural sugars are preferred to all other forms of sugars.

How to Include More Natural Sugars in our Diet?

We have to take special care to make our diet balanced. This implies that the diet we take contains all the nutrients needed by our body in a balanced manner. This restricts the amount of sugar we add to our bodies. We have to be careful in adding fruits and vegetables that contain substantial amounts of sugar in them. While planning your diet, have the objective you want to achieve and then go for the different components of your diet, and in them add the right amounts and right types of fruits and vegetables that are known sources of natural sugars.

Natural sugars are always better for our health as most of the processed, packed and refined food we take-in contain more amounts of refined sugars. When you eat junk food, you will be loading your body with these sugars in higher amounts that is not good for your health as they become reasons for many health issues due to the addition of many harsh, dangerous and potential additives along with refined sugars.

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Dr. Jimmy Obaji M.D.

Dr. Jimmy Obaji completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Manitoba. He currently operates a walk-in-clinic in downtown Toronto.

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