As April blooms with the freshness of Spring, it’s often a time for decluttering and rejuvenation. While we tidy up closets and tackle junk drawers, have you considered giving your diet a spring cleaning too?

For many Americans, our diets are overflowing with sugar. You’re probably thinking, “Martha has written a lot about sugar lately.” And you’re right—I have. That’s because it’s such a crucial topic. Making even small adjustments, like reducing added sugars, can yield significant improvements in our health. If you’ve been following my past newsletters, you likely already know the recommended daily intake for women—6 teaspoons—and for men—9 teaspoons. Shockingly, though, the average American adult consumes a whopping 17 teaspoons daily!

Our brains crave sugar—it’s their primary source of energy. However, too much of it can spell trouble. Excess sugar intake can lead to brain shrinkage, impair cognitive function, and even increase the risk of dementia. Inflammation caused by sugar can further exacerbate memory issues, while diminishing levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) can hamper memory formation and learning.


For many, dementia hits close to home. Personally, I witnessed my grandmother’s gradual decline due to Alzheimer’s—a heartbreaking journey often referred to as the “Slow Goodbye.” Being a caregiver to someone with dementia is emotionally taxing and profoundly challenging.


But where does all this sugar hide? Sodas, fruit juices, and energy drinks are notorious culprits, but sugar also lurks in processed foods like cereals, pastries, and even instant soups. If your diet leans heavily on these processed options, it might be time for a change.


Consider swapping sugary snacks and beverages for whole foods like fresh fruits and vegetables. Embrace natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup, and hydrate with plenty of water. Finally, get plenty of sleep each night, move your body, and connect with others each day.  Small changes can make a big difference to your aging brain and overall wellness. 


As we wrap up, I’m thrilled to extend an invitation to our upcoming workshop, promising an enlightening and delectable experience you won’t want to miss. Teaming up with the talented Chef Kim Stone, we’re diving deep into the impact of sugar on brain health, decoding labels to distinguish between natural and added sugars, and embracing a more balanced approach to nutrition. With Chef Kim’s expertise, we’ll savor a selection of her favorite “healthier” treats, igniting our taste buds while nourishing our bodies. And that’s not all – attendees will depart armed with not only recipes but also invaluable knowledge to foster a healthier, more harmonious lifestyle. Mark your calendars and join us for an event that promises to be both informative and delicious!