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How Too Much Sugar Can Harm Your Liver?

Published On : February 05, 2024

Did you know that too much sugar is harmful to the liver? Yup! Apart from being harmful to overall health, sugar can be harmful to the liver to a major extent. Too much sugar can result in obesity which can harm the liver. GS Hospital, the best hospital in Hapur, takes the initiative to bring about awareness about the harmful effects of sugar on the liver. If you are diabetic or have a strong family history of diabetes, this health blog is a must-read for you.

How Too Much Sugar Can Harm Your Liver?

Sugar & Liver Health:

The liver is considered one of the important organs of the body. Liver as the name suggests means “to live.” A healthy liver is a must to prevent any kind of problems. The liver is the main metabolic center of the body for the conversion of food in the form of carbs, proteins, and fat into energy. Whatever food we eat is metabolized by the gut with the help of the liver enzymes which is used by the body as energy to function.

Sugar releases toxins in the body known as oxidative radicals causing damage to the liver. This affects the liver functioning. Remember, the liver needs its daily dose of healthy foods to perform the functioning of detoxification. The inability to detox by the liver causes a spike in sugar levels and toxins. The good news is that the liver has the ability to regenerate with healthy lifestyle solutions and medication management.

GS Hospital has a team of the best general physicians in Ghaziabad to deal with liver problems and complications related to high sugar levels. With their expertise, we have rounded up the harmful effects of sugar which must be taken care of. Let us explore the harmful effects of sugar on the liver, and more known facts about sugar.

Why is sugar bad for health?:

We are all aware that excess sugar is bad for health. Excess of anything in the diet is not good for the body. Well, the majority of us know the real truth of sugar which is the main reason for diabetes. But, did you know that before you are diagnosed with high sugar levels, there are many changes that occur due to high sugar intake in the body? Yes, that's true! In the initial stage, sugar intake may directly affect liver health. Let us find out how:

1. Obesity:

High intake of sugar impacts weight which leads to obesity. When we consume sugar, our body breaks it down into simple glucose. This is the simplest form of energy which is utilized for all body functions and activities. However, excess glucose gets stored as fat in the liver cells. This results in fatty liver problems. The majority of people battling overweight and obesity suffer from fatty liver. The best solution is to lose weight by exercising and consuming a healthy diet.

2. Diabetes:

High sugar levels cause diabetes. Diabetes is a metabolic and endocrine disorder affecting the liver directly. This excess sugar gets turned into fat which is stored in the liver. Do you know why? Because the liver is trying to metabolize the sugar with great difficulty which can overburden it and affect the liver functioning.

3. Gut issues:

High sugar intake can directly affect the gut microbiota. A healthy balance of gut microbes with good and bad bacteria is essential for boosting metabolism and digestion. With a high intake of sugar, the microbiota balance goes for a toss. This causes damage to liver health hampering the digestion and metabolism process of the body.

4. Reduced metabolism:

Yes, the next on the list is the reduced metabolism of the body due to high sugar levels. Reduced metabolism can give rise to gut issues and vice versa. This causes a spike in blood sugar levels as the body has a defective metabolism. Defective metabolism will cause an increase in toxicity harming the liver.

Carbohydrates and fats are broken down into simple molecules of glucose in the body through a process of hepatic lipogenesis. Inability to digest or metabolize the food, the glucose, and the fats are stored in the liver causing hepatic steatosis or fatty liver.

5. Inflammation:

Fatty liver is one form of liver inflammation. A high intake of sugar leads to liver inflammation which damages the liver cells causing liver dysfunction and liver diseases. This affects the functioning of the liver leading to defective metabolism and accumulation of toxins in the body. These toxins are nothing but oxidative free radicals causing further damage to the body.

6. Oxidative stress:

Alcohol and tobacco can create major havoc in the body. This can increase toxicity causing a spike in sugar levels leading to excessive accumulation of fat in the liver leading to alcoholic liver disease. Smoking also impacts the liver function causing inflammation and increased oxidative stress contributing to on-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

Oxidative stress mainly happens due to defective metabolism when there is excessive toxin accumulation in the liver. Yes! Sugar tends to damage the liver or hepatic cells in the long run and impacts their overall functioning.

Sugar: The main culprit for liver:

Sugar is considered as the main culprit for liver health. The way sugar intake impacts health is quite different. It all starts with impacting the liver. 90% of the global population is affected by fatty liver. As per the reports of GS hospital, fatty liver is considered as one of the most common findings in many patients through ultrasonography. The truth is that sugar is considered one of the major culprits for fatty liver. Let us discover how sugar causes fatty liver in the next part of the article.

1. Fatty liver:

Sugar first gets metabolized in the liver and gets converted into stored fat. This fat is gradually released as the body needs energy. It is important to note that this stored fat in the sugar present in liver cells is not healthy fat. This condition is non-alcoholic fatty liver (NAFLD).

2. Insulin resistance:

Insulin is a hormone secreted by the pancreas which helps regulate and control sugar levels. Insulin allows cells to use up sugar for energy. However, when there is a continuous spike in blood sugar levels, the insulin may develop resistance and become unresponsive leading to diabetes. This causes major damage to liver health as the hepatic cells are unable to convert food into energy.

So, liver problems are bound to crop up with a high intake of sugar. Treating yourself with sugary stuff once a month does not create a problem. But, continuous intake of sugar daily can take a toll on health. With continuous intake of sugar, the functioning of the liver to metabolize may be affected.

Healthy lifestyle changes to control sugar levels:

Here are some of the best lifestyle changes to control sugar levels:

  • Well-balanced diet works best to neutralize high sugar levels.
  • Consume high-protein-rich foods that help keep fuller and prevent sugar cravings.
  • Eat nutritious foods enriched with vitamins and minerals which helps prevent fatty liver problems.
  • Stop consuming sugary drinks in the form of carbonated water, soft drinks, energy drinks and artificial juices.
  • Avoid excess carbs such as biscuits, breads, and packaged foods. Reducing carbs in the diet can make a major difference in the liver health.
  • Avoid oily fried and fatty food which spikes up the triglyceride’s levels causing an upsurge in sugar levels.
  • Choose a fiber-rich diet with quinoa, oats, barley, and legumes which helps in keeping sugar cravings at bay.
  • Say No to alcohol and tobacco.
  • Choose healthier options for sugar such as honey or jaggery.
  • Ensure exercise to keep fit and prevent obesity.
  • Have a sound sleep to balance out your sleep hormones.
  • Avoid stress which causes the release of cortisol (stress hormones) leading to sugar cravings.
  • Ensure to have timely meals to avoid unusual sugar and fast-food cravings.
  • Drink enough water and keep yourself hydrated.
  • Maintain a healthy balance of hormones and control your hunger or appetite hormones.


An apple a day keeps a doctor away! This is very true. The next time you get a sugar craving, go grab an apple. Yup! It is important to switch over to a healthy diet with high protein and high fiber intake to keep sugar cravings at bay. GS Hospital, the Best Hospital in Meerut, provides exceptional care to all patients with a team of top general physicians in Meerut, to promote a healthy lifestyle.

If you are already addicted to sugar, it is important to get connected with one of our Top General Physicians in Ghaziabad at GS Hospital. Go ahead and control your sugar levels with the expertise of the best doctors for healthy lifestyle changes with diet, exercise, and medication regime to keep diabetes away!

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