Perhaps you have seen “Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion.” The 1997 movie starred Lisa Kudrow and Mira Sorvino as two shallow thirty-somethings who reinvent themselves as brilliant business women in the hope of impressing the attendees of their high school reunion. The movie is chock full of quotable quotes, mostly concerned with the superficiality of the women who put too much emphasis on appearance and not enough emphasis on what counts. Such quotes include, “Did you deduct 16 pounds for your shoes?” and, “When I made my first million, my present to myself was a new face,” and, “I’m sorry I forgot my top.” But one priceless gem that sticks out among others came out of Romy’s mouth when she gives her insights on nutrition: “Actually, I have been trying this new fat-free diet I invented. All I had to eat for the past six days are gummy bears, jelly beans, and candy corns.” Beware, Romy, your fat-free diet is a perfect recipe for skin inflammation.
What Are the Effects Of Sugar?
When you eat sugary foods, a.k.a. high glycerin foods, your insulin levels go up and create a burst of inflammation in your body. This, in turn, breaks down collagen and elastin. This horrifying process is called glycation which can cause skin to sag and wrinkles to appear. Glycation can cause weak cracking, skin that takes a long time to heal, exacerbating conditions like acne, psoriasis , psoriasis and rosacea.
Stay Below the Sugar Limits
According to the World Health Organization, free sugar intake should make up less than 10% of your total calorie intake. Reductions to below 5% per day (six teaspoons) are even more beneficial. Free sugar refers the monsaccharides and disaccharides added to food or sugar naturally occurring in syrups fruit juices, honey and syrup.
Read Ingredient Label
While it is obvious that Romy’s all-candy diet was a recipe for instant glycation, there are some less obvious offenders. Sugar is in everything from dressing to sauces to chips to crackers and beyond. To prevent the unconscious intake of sugar, read the labels on everything your eating to check sugar levels and remember to adjust for serving size.
Stay Away from Liquid Sugar
Beware! Those “healthy” smoothies you’ve been inhaling for breakfast each day may be the source of your complexion woes. An average smoothie, about 32 oz, can contain 30 grams of sugar! Because liquids go down more easily then food, we are less likely to keep track of the quantity we consume. The best solution? Stop drinking soda, lemonade , shakes, sweet teas, juices and, sadly, those beloved smoothies.
Cut Down On Fruit
Yes, even our trusted fruit can betray us. Just one large naval orange can contain 23 grams of sugar! Dried fruit and processed fruit, such as are found in smoothies and juices, are also high in glucose. If you suffer inflammation, you may want to stick to one low sugar fruit per day. The best choices are berries.
Stay Away from High Glycemic Foods
Simple carbohydrates, while easily absorbed by the body can cause a spike in insulin and lead to inflammation and glycation, The faster your body can absorb a food, the faster it raises your blood sugar. Most processed foods are highly glycemic because they lack fats, fibers and proteins that make foods more difficult to absorb.
So, while Romy’s diet might have sounded perfect at the time, she probably paid for it later. If you have any information to share about the connection between diet and inflammation, or are just a Romy and Michele fan, we would love to hear from you. Please share your wisdom.