Watch out for sugar season! Yep, it's one of the biggest reasons we succomb to colds and flu. From Halloween to Valentines Day we indulge in too much sugar. Gifts of candy, celebratory cakes and pies and generally eating too many carbs over the holidays contribute to high blood sugar.
A study from Loma Linda University in the 70's showed how white blood cells are less effective killing bacteria up to 5 hours after a big dose of sugar. So, really, do you want your immune system dealing with sugar instead of cold and flu viruses much less cancer cells, MRSA, ebola, etc?
Add to that, high blood sugar starts an inflammation chain reaction that leads to insulin resistance, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, auto-immune disease, Alzheimer's, and obesity.
But what to do? I know, sugar is everywhere. I make it a policy not to buy anything with the word "sugar" in the ingredients, and that goes for high fructose corn syrup, and corn syrup solids or anything that looks like it. That leaves me with lots of sweet options but reduces my sugar intake drastically. Read the labels on soups, salad dressings, spaghetti sauce, bread, crackers, cereal, yogurt, or anything ready to eat. Make sure that if you are eating sugar it is intentional! Just eliminating the sugar in things that are not supposed to be sweet like spaghetti sauce will go far in reducing overall sugar intake.
Get your sugar fix from whole fruit, raisins, prunes, dates, and honey. Then when you have down-regulated your sweet tooth and withdrawn from high fructose corn syrup you can start to moderate the "good" sugars.
I truly believe sugar is the worst poison in our diets because of the harm it does directly to our bodies and the underlying harm of being addictive. You can't pay enough attention to reducing your blood sugar.
Here are three sweet recipes to help you make it through the holidays without high fructose corn syrup and other more dangerous desserts.
All the best,
Raw Cranberry Relish
2 bags cranberries
¼ sweet onion
dash of cinnamon
piece of ginger
agave nectar to taste
Optional: orange juice and/or rind, lime juice and/or rind, nuts
Combine everything in a food processor and blend. Chill and serve.
6 T Tahini
½ cup honey
½ t cinnamon
1 ½ cups oats
½ cup raw nuts or seeds
Mix tahini, honey, and cinnamon. Add oats and nuts/seeds. Mix well. Spoon onto parchment or silicone lined cookie sheets.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes +/- until golden brown. Freeze for crispness.
Carla’s Raw Fudge
Makes 24 small squares
½ cup coconut oil
¼ cup raw almond butter, or other nut butter
½ cup raw cacao powder
½ cup pure maple syrup
1 T pure vanilla extract
pinch of salt
¾ cup raw walnuts, roughly chopped
1. With electric beaters, beat together the coconut oil and almond butter.
2. Sift in the cacao powder and beat again until combined.
3. Pour in the maple syrup, vanilla, and salt and beat until smooth.
4. Stir in the walnuts.
5. Line a loaf pan with a piece of parchment paper. Scoop the chocolate mixture into the pan and spread out until even. Sprinkle with additional chopped walnuts for garnish if desired.
6. Freeze for about an hour until firm. Pull out of the loaf pan and slice into squares. Store leftovers (HA!) in freezer.
Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails.