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Overconsumption of Sugar Linked to Inflammatory Bowel Disease




You know by now that the overconsumption of sugar has negative consequences on your health. One of these negative consequences is an increased risk of inflammatory bowel disease, especially when you binge on it.


A study was conducted on mice recently at the University of Alberta in Canada. The researchers of the study found that mice who binged on sugar were more likely to experience colitis after just two days post binge than the mice who were fed a balanced diet. The researchers noted that people who are susceptible to colitis see the same thing. A balanced diet isn't as inflammatory to them. However, a short-term increase in the amount of sugar that they consume can be quite problematic to inflammatory bowel conditions.


There's no doubt now that what we eat, and how much of it we consume, can sway our susceptibility to disease - not just colitis. The researchers of the study were trying to find out just how long it took for a poor diet to negatively impact one's health. The conclusion was two days, which is rather quick. So if you are experiencing negative health problems, you may want to go back and review what you've been consuming over the past couple of days.


The researchers found that the negative health impacts were caused by gut bacteria. High sugar consumption, such as what happens when we binge on sugar in a short amount of time, have a negative impact on our gut bugs. There's a trend for "cheat days", where people eat balanced meals throughout the week, and then binge on one meal, one day, or an entire weekend. This isn't good, because it creates instability with gut bacteria.


Luckily the researchers were able to mitigate the bacterial instability in a short amount of time by giving the mice a supplement of short-chain fatty acids. Supplementing with these could help humans as well. However, this should not be an excuse to binge. It's still best to consume a balanced diet and limit or completely eliminate sugar consumption when possible.


One of the main takeaways of the study is that it showed that even the most short-term sugar binges in the absence of short-chain fatty acids can be detrimental, and can cause dramatic gut permeability. This would allow gut bacteria byproducts, like lipopolysaccharides, would be able to move from their normal home in the gut to other parts of the body. So if you or someone you know is susceptible to colitis and other inflammatory bowel diseases, it's best to consume a balanced diet, avoiding sugar bites and cheat meals or days as much as possible.


Meet Stephanie

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Hey there! I'm Stephanie, a functional nutritional therapy practitioner, restorative wellness practitioner, certified holistic health coach, and educator. I teach individuals how to take back their health with real food so they can finally get to the root cause of dysfunction and restore wellness within themselves. I reside in Boise, Idaho where I enjoy spending lots of time outdoors, drinking copious amounts of tea, cuddling with cats and reading good books. 

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