The Halloween Sugar Rush

You know the feeling—sweetness has turned your mouth dry. You feel lightheaded. There’s a strange rush of energy through your arms and legs. You feel like you could run for miles, but you know if you do that, you’ll fall flat on your face.

The feeling? A sugar rush. Sometimes you get one when you eat too much dessert at a party…and sometimes you get one the night of Halloween after gorging on your kid’s bucket of candy! A sugar rush does the same thing to adults and kids, so it’s time to find out why you (and your kids) should avoid one this month.

Sugar and Your Skin

Did you know that a sugar rush is harmful to your skin? A sugar rush does more damage than small amounts of sugar in your daily diet. We hope that this discovery will motivate you to ignore the candy that comes home with your kids next Friday, or to bypass the sugary treats your coworkers are bound to bring out.

According to , when blood sugar spikes rapidly (as in a sugar rush), a process called glycation starts, where sugar attaches itself to collagen. This attachment makes the skin inflexible, leading to premature aging of the skin. This process is not limited to adults—although you probably won’t see it in kids, sugar is no respecter of persons. Did you need a better motivation to keep sugar off the table this month?

Sugar and the Waistline

Of course we can’t forget to mention this well-known side effect of sugar. You know that sugar will eventually travel from your tummy to your hips, but not all at once. And it’s not all about your waistline—it’s about your health in general. Long-term consumption of high amounts of sugar will eventually lead to insulin resistance, which poses a risk for all kinds of health problems—diabetes to high blood pressure to breast and prostate cancer.

How does insulin resistance develop? When you eat sugar, you trigger a release of insulin, which is in turn a trigger for the body to store energy as fat. One Halloween sugar rush amidst a lifestyle of low- or no-sugar meals may not lead to the health risks listed above, but it will certainly lead to weight gain in the days following. Insulin resistance develops in conjunction with a high-sugar diet—check out the “Sugar’s Long-Term Effects Aren’t Sweet” section of this article to learn more.

What to do?

So you’re motivated to stay away from the sugar rush this Halloween, but don’t know if you’ve got the willpower to avoid sweets altogether. That’s ok. There are healthy alternatives to sugar! You don’t have to go the aspartame route to get a sweet fix. You can eat candy sweetened with stevia, an herb that has no affect on blood sugar. You can find candy sweetened with xylitol or maltitol, sugar alcohols (but don’t eat too much of these, either, as they can cause mild intestinal distress). So get busy finding these safe alternatives to sugar to keep your sweet Halloween!

Will you allow yourself a sugar rush anyway?

If you want to avoid the inflexible skin of a sugar rush, or a risk of insulin resistance, you know how to find safe alternatives to sugar. But you don’t have to have candy copies. You can still party this Halloween with natural and creative delights— the fruit treats on this blog are just as fun as most sugary ones!

Are you thinking you’ll dive into the sugar rush in spite of these facts? What’s your reasoning? Or have we convinced you to steer your family towards a healthier way this year? Tell us about it! We want to know, and so do our readers!