Sounds fatal, right? Well, the probability is the majority of us don’t even realise that we are actually consuming these three white poisons on a daily basis! Some of us, and often, in larger quantities than we should. But what exactly are the three white poisons? In this article, I will be explaining what the three white poisons are and the deadly risks that they pose to our health! The three white poisons explained:
So, what are they? I will tell you what they are: white refined sugar, white refined flour and salt.
Yup. Health experts have referred to these three necessary ingredients as The Three White Poisons. Consumed in large quantities, this triplet will inflict all sorts of problems such as sluggishness and obesity in the short term, and even chronic and eventually fatal diseases in the long run such as high blood pressure and type 1 and 2 diabetes.
1) White Refined Sugar
Sugar is probably the worst on this list. And who doesn’t like a bit of a sugar rush here and there? Sugar is found naturally in certain foods, which is usually a very healthy amount. The harm is in the excess that a lot of us tend to consume on the daily, and often times without even realising it. Asides from diabetes and the obvious consequences on teeth and weight, added sugars can even have extremely harmful effects on our mood stability and energy levels.
When you eat a bar of chocolate for instance, you will certainly feel upbeat and energetic for a very short period of time, but after a while you completely crash, and you end up feeling lethargic and in need of more chocolate. So, you might reach out for a few biscuits or a packet of sweets to keep you going – and the same process will keep repeating itself until you decide to give up sugar completely, preferably for a period of 3 to 4 weeks to allow your body the time to detoxify itself.
Studies have actually shown that sugar releases dopamine in the brain – yes, sugar has the same effect on your brain system as drugs! Which will lead us on to our next point… what can we do to avoid all of this?
Well, it’s actually really simple. All you need to do is to completely eliminate sugar from your diet – cold turkey. You will have withdrawal symptoms such as headaches and moodiness because sugar is like drugs, remember? But the trick is to keep with it, and by the second week your sugar cravings will begin to wear off and you won’t even flinch at the sight of confectionary eye-candy ever again. To add to that, you will feel calmer, a lot more relaxed and stable and you will notice that your concentration and productivity levels will significantly rise. Not bad, eh?
Don’t forget to include a sufficient amount of naturally sweet foods in your diet, such as fresh fruits, dried fruits and dates. Try to replace your usually unhealthy snacking habits with more filling and nutritious ones, as this will serve to provide you with the right amount of energy and strength to get through your day – and this time, it will actually last! Moreover, your moods and even your skin and your hair will forever be thanking you for it.
This is probably the hardest to control. I for one find it extremely difficult to eat savoury foods when they’re lacking salt, so I know how hard this can be. But fear not, because having a certain amount of salt in your diet is actually important, so unless you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, eliminating salt for long periods of time is unnecessary and will do you more harm than good. Just try to cut down on, or even better, get rid of foods that contain added amounts of sodium such as crisps, salted nuts and certain meats or salamis.
We’re not only looking at the long term harms here, like high blood pressure, kidney disease, cardiovascular diseases and stroke. Too much salt in your diet has its short term detriments too, including severe dehydration, lethargy and even water retention (edema).
So do your body a favour and cut down on your salt intake! You will feel a lot better, too.
3) White Refined Flour
If you’re someone who’s more into brown breads and whole grains anyway, then you’re on the right track! Not only do these actually contain nutritional value, but they also fill you up for longer and provide you with a healthy, stable release of energy throughout your day. If you can, it is best that you completely avoid food products made with white refined flour, which would obviously include white breads and cakes. The harms of processed flour aren’t much different to those of sugar. They include an increase in blood sugar which means that it is quickly converted into glucose once it is consumed – another risk of excess weight and diabetes.
White flour can also affect your digestive health in the short term because it lacks the fibre and essential nutrients that help with your digestion. Not to mention the increased risk of inflammation and infection, and the fact that it is actually chemically bleached to give it that paper-white colour it’s known for! Really, the list of vices that processed flour carries is endless. Try to start off by banning it from your diet for a period of 3 or 4 weeks, and start noticing improvements instantly. You won’t want to go anywhere near it again.
These are just a few points to consider when you feel like reaching out for a packet of sweets, that new tub of Pringles sitting on the supermarket shelf or those delicious-looking cupcakes you have waiting for you on your counter. Think twice about what you’re putting into your body and it will thank you in return!
British-Algerian writer & poet, aspiring journalist, history lover, art enthusiast & unicorn.