In an era characterised by fast and convenience foods, from packaged snacks and fast foods to sweet treats and sugar-laden beverages, it’s easy to give in to cravings and consume sugar in excessive amounts.

Unfortunately, the implications of too much sugar go beyond weight gain and cavities, as there are numerous potential health risks associated with excessive sugar intake.

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1. Dental decay and oral health issues

Sugary foods and beverages are notorious for their negative impact on dental health1. When sugar interacts with bacteria in the mouth, it produces acid that attacks tooth enamel, leading to tooth decay and cavities. Prolonged exposure to sugar can also contribute to gum disease, bad breath, and other oral health issues.

2. Visceral body fat

A major contributor to health complications linked to an excessive sugar intake relates to the resultant increase in visceral body fat2.

When we consume high amounts of sugar, especially in the form of refined carbohydrates, it leads to a rapid spike in blood sugar levels. In response, the pancreas releases insulin to facilitate glucose absorption into cells.

However, consistently high sugar consumption can lead to insulin resistance, impairing the body’s ability to efficiently process glucose. This triggers the storage of excess glucose as fat, particularly in the abdominal area where visceral fat accumulates.

Visceral fat surrounds vital organs, including the stomach, liver, intestines and kidneys, and can impact your endocrine system, releasing hormones that contribute to a range of health problems4, including insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and metabolic syndrome.

3. Obesity and lifestyle disease

One of the most well-known consequences of excessive sugar intake is weight gain. Sugary foods and beverages are often high in calories and low in nutritional value, leading to an imbalance in energy intake.

A study3 published in November 2016 in the journal Nutrients links an overconsumption of added sugar with weight gain and obesity, risk factors for heart disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, and certain cancers.

4. Increased risk of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes

Excessive sugar consumption has a direct correlation with the development of type 2 diabetes5. When we consume sugary foods, our blood sugar levels rise rapidly, triggering a surge in insulin production.

Over time, this constant demand on the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas can lead to insulin resistance, a condition where the body’s cells become less responsive to insulin. This can ultimately result in the development of type 2 diabetes.

5. Heightened risk of cardiovascular disease

High sugar diets have been linked to an increased risk of heart disease and stroke6. Excessive sugar consumption can lead to elevated triglyceride levels, a type of fat found in the blood.

Elevated triglycerides, combined with low levels of HDL (good) cholesterol, can contribute to the development of atherosclerosis, a condition where plaque builds up inside the arteries, narrowing them and impeding blood flow. This increases the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular problems.

6. Skin conditions

The spike in blood sugar and insulin levels caused by excessive sugar can lead to increased androgen secretion, oil production, and inflammation, which are all factors associated with acne development7.

Evidence8 also shows that low-glycaemic diets are associated with a reduced acne risk, while high-glycaemic diets, which typically contain more sugar, are linked to a higher acne risk.

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Reducing your sugar intake

Reducing your sugar intake offers clear health and body benefits. Start by making conscious choices to reduce your sugar intake and opt for healthier alternatives.

Focus on eating predominantly whole, nutrient-dense foods, rather than fast foods or convenience products, especially those made with added sugar.

Practising moderation by limiting the amount of sugar we add to tea, coffee, and breakfast cereal, and swopping sugar-sweetened beverages for sugar-free alternatives, preferably water, will also help regain control of our sugar consumption and safeguard our long-term health.

In addition, you can turn to supplements for added assistance to curb those sugar cravings. Products like Slimz Zero Sweet No More that contain a substance called Gymnema sylvestre may reduce your ability to taste sweetness9, consequently making sweet foods less appealing. This can lead to reduced sugar cravings and help you reduce your daily intake.

This ingredient comes from the Gymnema sylvestre plant (Asclepiadaceae), which is native to central and western India, tropical Africa and Australia. The plant has been used in folk, ayurvedic and homoeopathic systems of medicine to treat various conditions.

Research has also revealed a possible link between obesity, Gymnemic acids and diabetes9. The active ingredient included in supplements is isolated from the leaves and purified, which yields acidic glycosides.

And it is these Gymnemic acids that have anti-diabetic, anti-sweetener and anti-inflammatory properties, as they appear to delay glucose absorption in the blood and by the intestine, which results in a lower blood sugar level9.

Moreover, both Gymnema leaf extract and Gymnemic acid have been found to interfere with the ability of the taste buds to taste sweet and bitter9.

Based on these findings, researchers believe that people will limit their intake of sweet foods when using supplements with this substance that inhibit the sweet taste sensation.


  1. Carlos Alberto Feldens. Et al. Added Sugar and Oral Health: A Position Paper of the Brazilian Academy of Dentistry. Front. Oral. Health, 06 April 2022. Sec. Oral Health Promotion. Volume 3 – 2022 |
  2. Jiantao Ma, Matthew Sloan, et al. Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Consumption Is Associated with Abdominal Fat Partitioning in Healthy Adults. J Nutr. 2014 Aug; 144(8): 1283–1290. Published online 2014 Jun 18. doi: 10.3945/jn.113.188599.
  3. James M. Rippe1, Theodore J. Angelopoulos. Relationship between Added Sugars Consumption and Chronic Disease Risk Factors: Current Understanding. Nutrients. 2016 Nov; 8(11): 697. Published online 2016 Nov 4. doi: 10.3390/nu8110697
  4. Pavankumar Patel, Nicola Abate. Body Fat Distribution and Insulin Resistance. Nutrients. 2013 Jun; 5(6): 2019–2027. Published online 2013 Jun 5. doi: 10.3390/nu5062019.
  5. Sanjay Basu,, Paula Yoffe, et al. The Relationship of Sugar to Population-Level Diabetes Prevalence: An Econometric Analysis of Repeated Cross-Sectional Data. PLoS One. 2013; 8(2): e57873. Published online 2013 Feb 27. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0057873
  6. Kelly, R.K., Tong, T.Y.N., Watling, C.Z. et al. Associations between types and sources of dietary carbohydrates and cardiovascular disease risk: a prospective cohort study of UK Biobank participants. BMC Med 21, 34 (2023).
  7. Alicja Kucharska, Agnieszka Szmurło, Beata Sińska. Significance of diet in treated and untreated acne vulgaris. Postepy Dermatol Alergol. 2016 Apr; 33(2): 81–86. Published online 2016 May 16. doi: 10.5114/ada.2016.59146.
  8. Hilary Baldwin, Jerry Tan. Effects of Diet on Acne and Its Response to Treatment. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2021; 22(1): 55–65. Published online 2020 Aug 3. doi: 10.1007/s40257-020-00542-y.
  9. Parijat Kanetkar, Rekha Singhal, Madhusudan Kamat. Gymnema sylvestre: A Memoir. J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2007 Sep; 41(2): 77–81. Published online 2007 Aug 29. doi: 10.3164/jcbn.2007010.