Roses are red
Violets are blue
Desserts are sweet
But your skin is depending on you
Is your life sweet enough, sugar pies?
We are certainly hoping it is, and in case there are any loose ends, we wouldn’t recommend you add artificial sweeteners to settle them. This season is all about holistic and natural fixes and for good reason!
Jumping straight to dessert, we admit sugar is a quick-fix for a lot of drama in our lives. Every once in a while, we all delve into a tub of ice cream to cake our feelings, pun intended. Notwithstanding the comforting effects of desserts are, well, sweet to say the least, there is a bitter side to sugar. Sugar isn’t exactly your skin’s best friend and that is what we are going to talk about today.
It is common knowledge that carbs and fats have reigned the food pyramid as tyrants for a while now but sugar has conveniently been an underdog. Not many people are talking about the horrendous affects of excessive, refined sugar on the skin. Apart from being generally unhealthy for the skin, it exacerbates two of the most common skin woes: acne and wrinkles.
There is a word that you might not have been warned about, and you need to be very, very afraid of it.
The word is GLYCATION
Glycation happens when sugar in the bloodstream binds with proteins and wreaks havoc on your skin. Say hello to premature ageing.
Unduly sugar consumption spikes insulin and causes an upheaval on your hormonal balance. Say hello to breakouts.
Do you see how sugar is the culprit here? It might not be the only cause of your skin problems or premature skin ageing, but it has a big piece of the pie. Sucrose, fructose, glucose; sugar comes in many forms but simply put, excessive sugar is bad news. By the way, excessive sugar intake isn’t a far-fetched practice, as many of us would want to believe. Most of us in Pakistan, especially in the major cities, are already consuming what is termed as excessive sugar and we don’t even realize it. How? Here’s how:
- Savory Dining Becomes Sugary
We have become increasingly comfortable with food that is not homemade; dining out, ordering in and grabbing a bite on our way back home from work. This means, we are almost always given an option to order soft drinks. Even that supposedly healthy ‘mint lemonade’ served in most restaurants is full of sugar and soda.
Skip and replace the soft drinks with water when you’re opting for pre-designed meals. This applies to artificially sweetened beverages including processed juices too! Again, why can’t you just order water with your food?
- The Brownie Points Given to Desserts by Pakistanis
Baklava for the Turks.. Chocolates for the Swiss.. Black forest cake for the Germans.. Cannoli for the Sicilians.. Basbousa for the Egyptians..Tres Leches cake for the Spanish.. Macarons for the French.. and all of the above, including our own sweets for us Pakistanis.
Most mainstream cultures celebrate with sweet treats but in Pakistan, we take it to a whole new level of excess. After our traditional and heavily greasy main course, desserts are on a roll, and our skin is at the receiving end. We love our meetha but we seldom regulate it, to keep it in moderation.
Sugar is almost an addiction. It will take a while but if you cut desserts off completely, you will stop craving them so much.
- We Pretend We Don’t Make Doodh Patti into a Dessert
It is strange how most of us don’t even take into consideration the fact that our tea consumption includes spoonfuls of refined sugar. Multiply that by two (an average Pakistani has two cups of tea in a day), this means we have already surpassed the limit!
Sugar-free English tea or doodh patti requires an acquired taste and therefore, if it isn’t your thing, limit the cups of tea or the sugar intake. Try herbal teas also.
You don’t need to cut sugar out of your lives completely but instead make informed decisions and understand that our intake of sugar is far from moderate, and it seriously affects the skin. Ditch the sweet tooth for smoother, more glowing skin.