Too much sugar can lead to nutritional deficiencies – excess glucose reduces your body’s absorption of key minerals
10/22/2018 // Cassie B. // Views

We all know that sugar is bad for you, but what really happens if you eat too much of it? Your first answer might be that you could develop type 2 diabetes, which is reason enough to avoid sugar like the plague. There’s also the higher risk of obesity that regular sugar consumption causes. However, even if you do manage to duck those two unpleasant outcomes, another misfortune awaits: nutritional deficiencies.

Nutritional deficiencies might not sound like that big of a deal when compared to problems like diabetes, but it’s actually a far more insidious problem that can spur a host of other diseases. Sugar consumption depletes and reduces your body’s absorption of important minerals and vitamins, and there are a few in particular that are at risk when you overindulge.


Nearly every organ in your body needs magnesium, so failing to get enough of it can have serious repercussions. Responsible for creating protein, regulating muscle and nerve function, building bones, synthesizing DNA, and regulating your blood sugar levels, it’s not something you want to shortchange. Unfortunately, the elevated insulin and high blood sugar caused by eating too much sugar increases your kidneys’ excretion of magnesium and prompts your body to start burning through its reserves.

Vitamin C

In your body, glucose and vitamin C both use the same transporters, which means they essentially compete with each other in your bloodstream. This is problematic because humans can’t synthesize vitamin C on their own. When your cells don’t get enough vitamin C, your tissue regeneration and immune function will both be impaired.


Vitamin D

Every tissue and cell in your body contains a vitamin D protein receptor, and this important vitamin is useful for all manner of bodily functions including maintaining joint and bone health and helping immune system functioning. All of this is put at risk when you eat a lot of sugar, especially fructose, as it boosts your body’s production of an enzyme that degrades your vitamin D stores while impairing the function of another enzyme needed to synthesize the vitamin.

Most people are already deficient in this immensely useful vitamin, which is mostly obtained via sun exposure, so you definitely don’t want to make it worse by eating too much sugar. Vitamin D deficiency has also been linked to dementia, inflammation, and some types of cancer.


According to Natural Health 365, glucose is linked to an increase in calcium excretion by the kidneys. It also suppresses hormones and inhibits the reabsorption of calcium. On top of that, vitamin D is needed for calcium absorption, and as mentioned above, sugar also depletes vitamin D levels. That’s bad news because calcium is vital for nerve and muscle function, blood coagulation, and bone health.


Although your body only needs a small amount of chromium, it’s absolutely essential for controlling blood sugar and metabolizing macronutrients. Excess sugar can trigger chromium excretion, easily leading to a deficiency of this important trace mineral.

Vitamin B Complex

Consuming high amounts of refined sugars can deplete your body of the B complex vitamins. When you eat foods that contain a lot of bleached flour and white sugar, your body needs extra B vitamins to do the hard work of converting them to energy.

Sugar is bad news all around

As you can see, the dangers posed by high sugar consumption go far beyond type 2 diabetes. In addition to taking up space in your diet that could have been devoted to something more nutritious, it stops your body from absorbing or using vitamins and other nutrients, jeopardizing your health from all angles.

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