The Sugar Bandit – How it Robs Your Health

Written by Laura Combs on Dec 9th, 2010 | Filed under: Health

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With every bite you eat you determine how you will live. Today let’s focus on sugar and its effects on all of our lives.

How Sugar Affects Health

In a nutshell, sugar can contribute to:

  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Weight gain
  • Premature aging
  • A whole bunch of other problems too numerous to list

If you have cancer and you eat sugar, know that you are directly feeding and growing the cancer, per this 2010 study by UCLA: Sugar Grows Cancer – Thank You UCLA!

Also know that every time you eat sugar you suppress your immune system for up to five hours afterward, making you more susceptible to colds and flu.

Eat less sugar and your chances of living a longer and more vibrant life will greatly increase.

In worms, for example, past studies have shown that cutting down sugar increased their lifespan the equivalent of 15 human years (see Avoiding Sweets May Spell A Longer Life, Study In Worms Suggests).

A 2009 study also found that just a small amount of glucose added to the worms’ diet cut their lifespan by about 20 percent. See ‘Spoonful Of Sugar’ Makes The Worms’ Life Span Go Down.

What does that mean for you? Researchers say there are lessons to be drawn from these studies. Me? I avoid sugar like the plague, yet it still creeps into our diet and I need to be periodically reminded of its many dangers.

Some Statistics & What This Means

The average American now eats about 23 teaspoons of sugar a day, 2.7 pounds of sugar every week, or about 140 pounds of sugar a year.

Dr. Mehmet Oz powerfully describes sugar this way: “Sugar in your blood is like shards of glass scraping the inner lining of your arteries.” Dr. Joseph Mercola has much to say about sugar, including this:

“When you eat sugar, it actually causes negative changes in your genes that last for two full weeks! So indulge in a couple of sodas or splurge on a hot fudge sundae and not only do your genes turn off controls designed to protect you from heart disease and diabetes, but the impact lasts for 14 days!

Even more concerning, if you eat too much sugar for a long time, your DNA may become permanently altered, and the effects could be passed on to your children and grandchildren.”

Great! I spent a lifetime mutating my DNA until about three years ago.

Luckily, my son Colson has one head, ten fingers and ten toes. I am relying on the super healthy Weston A. Price and Gut and Psychologys Syndrome (GAPS) healing foods diets that we follow to keep him healthy.

Why are People Sugar Addicted?

Many people are addicted to sugar.

What they don’t understand is that their bodies have been hijacked by yeast that lives in their guts.

This yeast DEMANDS that it be fed, so Americans eat more sugar, feed more yeast and become more inflamed and unhealthy. It isn’t a willpower issue, it is biological demand.

Can the Addiction be Broken?

Absolutely. My family did it.

We followed Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride’s Gut and Psychologys Syndrome (GAPS) Diet. The GAPS Diet starves and ultimately kills the yeast, freeing people from ALL unhealthy cravings.

People who strictly follow the diet will be FREE for life and the food you prepare is decadent.

Food will have never tasted so good because all of the processed junk will be eliminated from the diet and the taste buds come back to life.

This is not a lifetime diet, but a healing diet.

Achieve the desired health results and then modify your diet again by easing the restrictions of the GAPS diet more toward a Nourishing Traditions diet as described by the Weston A. Price Society.

One Family’s Journey

What Added Sugar Does My Family Eat and How Much?

We eat raw, untreated honey. Yeast, which causes food cravings, doesn’t prefer honey. We use it in our smoothies, in some sauces, and we bake with it. Our total consumption per person is 3 to 4 teaspoons a day.

How Healthy Are We?

Crazy, super healthy! Our health highlights are all over my blog (as well as our challenges).

Here is a neat post regarding how our formerly injured and broken bodies have excelled by removing sugar and other carbohydrates: Sugar Woes and Victories.

My family’s journey has been so fun, surprising and unexpected. Every day we talk about how great we feel and how we wish other people would learn that they can feel great too.

It is really empowering that we don’t fear our health and the health insurance debacle facing this country because we have taken responsibility and are healing and strengthening ourselves with food.

You can too. Eliminating sugar is a great first step!

Share what you’ve learned about sugar, it’s effects, alternatives and your own health journey in the comments section!

About Laura Combs

Laura Combs has written 17 post in this blog.

Laura Ruhana Combs is an environmental planning consultant turned healing foods lover after recovering herself from dangerous physical ailments and helping her husband heal from ADD and her son from debilitating seasonal allergies. Laura knows that the body wants to live vibrantly if given the chance, and healing foods are the foundation. Through shopping trips, individual cooking classes, and phone consultations, Laura helps people implement the delicious, decadent, healing foods plan of their choice. To learn more about Laura’s journey and access her healing foods resources, visit or email

2 Responses to “The Sugar Bandit – How it Robs Your Health”

  1. Laura,

    I just read your article about Farmer’s Markets (loved it!) and came back to re-read this one because it has stuck with me ever since I first read it several months ago. I have great desire to “get there” and have a sugarless diet, but don’t really know how…and I am (currently) too cheap to buy the book. :) Are there any free websites that share recipes, meal planning ideas, etc?


  2. Thanks for reading!

    Go to and

    There are lists of legal and illegal foods. Also google Elana’s Pantry for recipes.

    The gist of it is that you want to remove disaccharides: all sugar except raw honey, all grain, all dairy except that which you ferment yourself and it should be raw, and all beans but navy, lima and green. You can eat raw hard cheeses. GAPS and Breaking the Cycle will tell you which ones. Cheddar is our mainstay. It should be raw. Eat lots of broth too. I posted about that earlier.

    Also, I have recipes on the left hand side of my blog: I need to update the recipe link, as there are some really good ones in separate blog posts. Check March, for example.

    Do that and you will be free in about 6 weeks and not want to go back.

    Hope that helps!