There's no doubt that sweet and sugary foods make us happy at any given point of time, but regular consumption of the same has been linked to weight gain, obesity and various other health-related issues. According to a new study, having excess amount of sugar may lead to larger fat deposits around heart and abdomen, putting our health at risk. The findings of the study were published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. For the uninitiated, consumption of excess sugar is a global problem; and as per an ANI report, the demand for sugar is expected to increase in Asian countries, Africa and Russia over the years.
"When we consume too much sugar, the excess is converted to fat and stored. This fat tissue located around the heart and in the abdomen releases chemicals into the body which can be harmful to health. Our results support limiting added sugar intake," said study author So Yun Yi, a PhD student at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.
It was an observational study, which explored both sweetened beverages and sugar added to different food items. It also analysed the link between long-term sugar consumption and fat storage around heart and other organs on a total of 3,070 participants aged between 18 and 30 years.
The study found that higher intake of both sweetened beverages and added sugar had a strong link with greater storage of fats around organs in a step-wise manner.
"Our findings provide more evidence that consuming too much added sugar and sugary drinks is related to a higher amount of fat tissue. And, we know that fat deposits are connected with higher risks of heart disease and diabetes," said study author Dr. Lyn Steffen of the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.
Hence, the researchers advised to reduce sugar intake per day and have healthier alternatives instead.
"Have water instead of sugary drinks and choose healthier snacks over foods rich in added sugar like cakes. Read food labels to check the amount of added sugar in what you are buying. Look for ingredients like syrups, glucose, fructose, sucrose, and maltose. Being more aware of hidden suagr will help you cut back," Dr. Steffen recommended.