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Is Sugar Responsible for the Obesity Epidemic?




The developed world is currently struggling with an obesity epidemic, responsible for higher rates of death and various diseases and conditions (including diabetes and heart disease). The percent of U.S. adults over the age of 19 who are overweight is now 73.6 percent, with 42.5 percent of adults being formally classified as obese – and the statistics for children and adolescents aren’t much better. 

Various nutrition and health experts have pointed the finger at different culprits over the years, with many people blaming sugar intake for the rise in obesity. But is sugar completely to blame for the obesity epidemic? And if so, what can we do about it? 

The Problems With Sugar

Essentially, the problems with sugar 

  • A source of excess calories. First and foremost, sugar is a source of excess calories – and often, those calories are empty. Sugar is a type of simple carbohydrate that comes in a few different forms, including glucose and fructose, but it always carries 4 calories per gram. It’s found naturally in a variety of foods, including those we find nutritious and part of a “healthy diet,” like apples and other fruits. However, it’s also frequently added to processed foods, especially desserts, making them richer and more caloric. When human beings consume more calories than they expend in the course of a day, they store the extra energy in the form of fat. Put simply, sugar is a rich source of calories, so eating too much sugar can lead to weight gain. 
  • Good taste. Adding to the complexity of the situation is sugar’s delicious taste. Humans evolved to favor sweet foods, like fruits, because they’re both rare and nutritious in the wild. But these days, sugar is plentiful – and it still tastes just as delicious. People love eating sugar, feeling a release of dopamine and other “feel-good chemicals” whenever they do it, so much so that some experts believe it’s possible to be addicted to sugar. If you have a bad habit of eating high-calorie, sugary foods, this quality of sugar can make the problem worse. 
  • High prevalence. Sugar has the potential to make a person overweight, sure, but can it really be blamed for an entire culture of overweight people? The answer is partially yes, if for no other reason than its high prevalence. Food producers all over the world pack sugar into their foods whenever possible – especially a certain type of sugar called high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), which functions as a preservative in addition to its sweetening effect. This makes sugar hard to avoid – and adds calories to otherwise perfectly good food choices. 
  • High glycemic index. It’s also worth noting that sugar metabolizes in the body differently than other carbohydrates and other nutrients. It carries a high glycemic index (GI), meaning it processes very quickly, releasing into the bloodstream at a fast rate. However, it should be noted that the evidence that sugar has a direct impact on obesity rates independent of its caloric content is difficult for experts to parse. In other words, we’re not sure whether sugar’s fast processing in the body makes its calories have a different impact on the body than comparable qualities from a lower-GI food. 

How to Handle the Sugar Problem

So what can we do to handle the sugar problem? 

Everything starts with us being more educated consumers. We need to pay careful attention to the labels of the food products we buy, and understand that added sugar can have a negative impact on our health. 

We can also work on utilizing sweeteners and preservatives other than sugar. These days, thanks to the progress made by food scientists, we have access to a wide range of both natural and artificial sweeteners that give us the same great taste and culinary function of sugar – but without the high calories and high glycemic index. 

Other Variables to Consider

Of course, it’s hard to blame sugar exclusively for the obesity epidemic. We also have to consider: 

  • Total calorie consumption. High-calorie diets, regardless of the specific foods eaten, will lead to obesity. Big portion sizes and mindless snacking are partially to blame for the epidemic. 
  • Trans fatty acids (TFAs). Some experts have pointed the finger at TFAs, fatty compounds that are prevalent in fast foods and fried foods. 
  • Sedentary lifestyle. We also need to consider the lack of physical exercise the average person gets on an average day. With desk jobs and minimal time in recreational activities, we burn fewer calories. 

Sugar isn’t the only factor responsible for the high rates of obesity in the developed world, but it’s definitely a contributor. Collectively, we need to take the impact of sugar seriously and work to lessen its impact on our weight and health.

Michelle has been a part of the journey ever since Bigtime Daily started. As a strong learner and passionate writer, she contributes her editing skills for the news agency. She also jots down intellectual pieces from categories such as science and health.

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The True Benefits of Decluttering for Your Mental Health and Wellness




There’s no doubt that we are all busy with things to do and tasks to accomplish, not just in our work but also, more importantly, in our personal lives. And in our increasingly busy and demanding lives, clutter can accumulate quickly. This clutter can be overwhelming and contribute to feelings of stress and anxiety, especially over time. It can- and will- affect us greatly if we’re constantly surrounded by it, whether in our workspaces or living spaces. On the other hand, it’s no secret that a tidy working and living space can create a sense of calm – but the benefits of decluttering go far beyond just having a neat workspace and home. So what are the true benefits of decluttering for your mental health and wellness? Let’s find out.

Reduced anxiety and stress

Clutter can be a significant source of our stress and anxiety. Imagine how a cluttered space can make it difficult to find what you need, and being surrounded by chaos and disorder can quickly overwhelm us. But when you declutter your space, you can reduce the visual stimuli around you and create a more calming environment. You’ll be able to find what you need more easily, and you’ll feel more in control of your surroundings. And it’s easier to declutter nowadays with help from a skip hire service (such as, which will remove all the clutter and clear out your surroundings much faster.

Enhanced creativity

You can also enhance your creativity when you are not surrounded by clutter at all hours of the day. A cluttered space can stifle creativity, and when there’s too much clutter around, it can be difficult to come up with new ideas, much less think clearly! But by decluttering your space, you’ll have more room to think and create. You’ll be able to see things more clearly, which can lead to new and more innovative ideas.

Improved focus and productivity

It can be a real challenge to focus on the task at hand when your space is cluttered. The clutter can distract you, and you may find yourself constantly shifting your attention to different items or belongings around the room. But when you declutter, you can create a more focused environment that allows you to concentrate on what you’re doing. 

Improved sleep quality

Did you know that too much clutter can also impact the quality of your sleep? A cluttered bedroom can make it difficult to relax, and it can even contribute to insomnia. But when you have a cleaner and more organized bedroom, it results in a more serene environment conducive to rest and relaxation. You’ll be able to fall asleep more easily (and stay asleep for a longer time), which can lead to greater energy and productivity during the day.

Increased mindfulness

Decluttering your space requires a certain level of mindfulness because it involves being aware of your surroundings, identifying what’s important (and what’s not), and making intentional decisions about what to keep and what to let go of. This level of mindfulness can extend beyond just decluttering your space and can help you cultivate greater mindfulness in other areas of your life! By being more mindful, you’ll be able to make better decisions and live a more intentional, fruitful life.

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