If diabetes is caused by sugar, how about honey?

Dear Doctor;People say diabetes is a sugar disease and that consuming too much sugar would cause me diabetes. How come some people who eat lots of sugar do not get the disease? And why do they recommend honey yet it is sweeter than sugar? Anne-Marie, 20.

Dear Doctor;

People say diabetes is a sugar disease and that consuming too much sugar would cause me diabetes. How come some people who eat lots of sugar do not get the disease? And why do they recommend honey yet it is sweeter than sugar? Anne-Marie, 20.

Dear Anne-Marie,

Here is the irony of the situation. Eating lots of sugar would not necessary lead to diabetes as people widely believe. In fact, people who do not eat sugar may also develop diabetes. Diabetes occurs due to deficiency of insulin (a substance that neutralises sugar) in the body. There may be no insulin at all (as in type 1 diabetes) or it may be present in inadequate amount as in type 2 diabetes. Thus, glucose present in the blood is not neutralised and higher levels are built up. This could be hereditary. Lack of exercise, obesity,  consuming alcohol, physical and mental stress, diseases of the pancreas are multiple other reasons why one can have diabetes. White sugar as such is not healthy. It provides only empty calories, adds on obesity and has no nutritional value at all.

Honey, a natural sweetener, in contrast has many health benefits. It has antiseptic, antioxidant (preventing wear and tear in body) and mucolytic (helping in cough) properties. These are scientifically proven benefits. Therefore, it is recommended over sugar as a sweetener.

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