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Heads Up: Sugar Ages the Skin

Wrinkles from too many sweets

Heads Up: Sugar Ages the Skin - Wrinkles from too many sweets

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If we eat too much sugar, it can lead to various problems in our bodies. One consequence of too many sweets: the aging process advances more rapidly. The skin looks wan and loose sooner and more wrinkles appear. White flour also has a similar effect. But why is that?

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Fast aging through sugar

AGEs (advanced glycation end products) are to blame for faster aging skin through sugar consumption. It’s understood to be a compound made up of sugar and protein molecules.

AGEs are waste products that can’t be metabolized. Only one part of these substances can be excreted via the kidneys, while the rest builds up in the tissue or blood vessels, thus burdening the organism.

In the long run, that can lead to various health problems. Our skin also suffers under high sugar consumption, says austrian pharmacist Dr. Theresa Friedrich, specialized in skin care and the owner of her own cosmetics line.

She explains: “Too much sugar, including in the form of white flour and other easily available types of sugar, very quickly raises blood sugar levels. The body then releases insulin to remove the sugar from the blood. If the blood sugar levels stay at this high level for long periods, it will leave its mark on the skin! Collagen and elastin fibers get bonded through deposits, rapidly losing their elasticity, which can cause wrinkles.”

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On top of that, cells in the body can have trouble getting an optimal supply of oxygen due to too many AGEs. This can impair the skin’s repair processes, among other things. Another consequence of “sugar conversion”: it promotes inflammation processes.

Which foods form AGEs?

AGEs develop in the body when we eat something that boosts our blood sugar levels. “And too much sugar, also in the form of white flour and other easily available types of sugar, very quickly raises blood sugar levels,” explains Dr. Theresa Friedrich.

In short: the more a food increases blood sugar levels, the more AGEs will be formed, and the faster we age.

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What you can do against rapid aging

If you want to stay young and vital as long as possible, ensure that your diet contains as little AGEs as possible. For example, you should:

  • Avoid sugar and isolated fruit sugar (e.g. high fructose corn syrup, fructose syrup, or agave syrup)
  • Eat less pasta made from light flour (above all wheat)
  • Favor carbohydrates with a low glycemic load (for example, whole grain cereal, legumes, fresh fruit and vegetables)

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