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Natural Awakenings Tucson

Visions of Sugar Plums

Sugar has been given a bad name because the majority of sugar we consume is glucose or “table sugar”, Glucose is used for energy production, but there are a wide variety of sugars that are necessary for good health. A new area of nutritional medicine known as glycoscience studies the critical importance of essential or smart sugars for good health, particularly glycoproteins.

Complexes of essential sugars are attached to proteins on the external surface of cells and are responsible for cell to cell signaling, which is critical to the endocrine system, immune system and nervous system. Glycoproteins are also critical for intracellular reactions.

Many essential sugars come from vine-ripened fruit and vegetable peels. If we are deficient in essential sugars, other sugars such as glucose may be substituted and disturb the signaling process. One problem is that many of our fruits and vegetables do not ripen on the vine so these sugars may not form. Another possibility is that we may not eat the peels due to concern for products such as wax, which may have been used on the produce or to avoid chemicals which may have been sprayed during growth.

People who crave sugar and eat sugary desserts are likely to be deficient in essential sugars, and when these essential sugars are consumed, the sugar craving often goes away as well. Some essential sugars include: xylose, sialic acid, N-acetylglucosamine, N-acetylgalactosamine. Published research supports that the smart sugar Trehalose has some effectiveness in helping to fight ALS. Sugar is part of our nutritional base. Remember the real health benefits that can be achieved with good choices.

Dr. Carol Henricks offers hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) at NorthStar Hyperbarics. Connect at 520-229-1238 or NorthStarHBOT.com. See ad, page 23.

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