Do you fancy a super sweet, full of syrup and chocolate dessert? Well, you can’t be the only one. Eating sugar triggers the pleasure centres of our brain. It causes the release of a chemical called dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is also known as the happiness chemical which is released when a certain stimuli happens. But cutting out sugar from your diet actually has many benefits for your health.

Sugar was life-saving back in the days when human civilisation was not as advanced. The times when humans mostly rely on nature alone to find food. As the easiest source of energy that humans can gather, sugar played an important role for human’s life. Then human civilisation got more advanced and food became easier to find, which resulted in many changes of humans eating habit. They started to eat more food regularly. In the past when people didn’t eat 3 times a day, it’s hard to overeat. But as food gets more affordable, humans start to have a hard time adjusting their inclination towards sugar. On average, Americans consume 17 teaspoons of added sugar daily according to scientists from University of California San Francisco. Consuming too much sugar is definitely not good for your health. Excessive sugar consumption are linked to obesity, diabetes and even cardiovascular disease.

While consuming natural sugar found in fruits is generally okay, here are the benefits of cutting out sugar for your health:

1. Less Risk for Diabetes

It’s obvious isn’t it? Less sugar means less diabetes risk. But that is not the case as many studies have suggested that there is no significant effect of total sugar on the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. A 2017 meta-analysis, found no significant effect of total sugars on the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Those consuming the most sugar actually had a 9 percent lower risk of developing diabetes, but the difference was not statistically significant which basically means it could have been a random occurrence. Diabetes is more about poor overall diet than just one sweet scapegoat. So how can cutting out sugar reduces your risk for diabetes? Replace your sugar with healthier foods like vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes. Whole grains have been found to protect you from diabetes, while healthy fatty acids found in nuts and vegetables can help ward off type 2 diabetes.

2. Clearer Skin

Do you ever wonder why your skin care routine seems to be fruitless? It might be because of the added sugar and refined foods you take. A study in 2011 showed that one to two can of sugary soda lead to more inflammation in the body. That is bad news for you with acne-prone skin. Inflammation also damages your skin’s elasticity and collagen which results in premature wrinkling, acnes and rosacea. So when you eat less sugar, you are reducing the chance of all those bad things that can do damage to your skin.

3. Reduce Depression

Eating sugar can result in a sugar “high” that will make elevate your mood and energy for a short period. But what’s surprising is sugary foods consumption have been linked with depression. A study suggested that older adults who drank more than four servings of soda per day were 30% more likely to be diagnosed with depression than people who didn’t drink soda. Those who drank more than four servings? 38% chance of depression diagnosis. There are several explanations as to why sugar leads to depression. One is that sugar causes inflammation in your body which affects your mood.

4. More Energy

Your body digest simple carbohydrates like added sugar quickly. It gives you a sudden spike of short-lived energy. As soon as it wears off you’ll start to feel weary and hungry. But as you consume less added sugar and selected for more healthy energy source like whole grains, nuts, and starchy vegetables, you’ll have a more steady supply of energy and you won’t go into that energy roller coaster. That’s because complex carbohydrate are digested at a slow, consistent rate.

We know that it’s near impossible to avoid sugary foods in this world. But just by restricting your sugar consumption can make a big difference in the long run for you health and well-being. So, here’s to healthier life!