In a recent full day of eating post, I had a comment that was something along the lines of "Isn't that quite a lot of sugar?".
I personally consume a lot of natural sources of sugar, mainly berries and bananas - but grade A maple syrup and honey here and there. And that's because...
There is a big difference between refined sugar and natural sources of sugar. Especially when it comes to your gut, which, as someone who experienced IBS, is of great importance.
There are many reasons for this, the primary being:
Refined sugar causes a spike in blood sugar as it is digested very rapidly, also causing a rapid rise in insulin. Natural sources of sugar are often accompanied by fibre which slows the digestive process...
...UNLESS they are blended. I usually blend fruit on either side of a workout for this "rapid digestion", to replenish carbohydrates and hydrate, whilst keeping it easily digestible to avoid bloating.
Refined sugar can cause an imbalance of good and bad bacteria in your gut. Bad bacteria, yeast, parasites, LOVE sugar. When overcoming IBS I in-fact removed all sources of refined sugar, and even limited natural sources and re-introduced them over time as my symptoms improved.
Natural sources of sugar often come in VERY nutrient-dense foods, whilst refined sugar usually comes in heavily processed foods.
Having said this... everything in moderation, including moderation itself. My aim here is not to steer you away from the odd sweet treat, it's more to encourage you to consume a variety of fruits and natural sources of sugar within your diet.
All sources of sugar are not created equal, so don't put them all in the same category.