A “60 minutes” documentary aired about a year ago proved without a doubt just how toxic sugar is and how prevalent it has become in the majority of American, or “western” diets. The average American consumes 1/3 lb sugar PER DAY! That’s a whopping 130 lbs a year.
They also said that it is as addictive as cocaine – and you can certainly see the visual similarity!
As you can see in the documentary (which you can see online – click here), it should be no surprise to anybody that studies clearly relate excess sugar consumption to obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart dise
ase, and cancer, as well as many more obscure diseases.
You might argue that some natural sugars have always been in the human diet, so why is this an issue? Well, yes humans have always eaten small amounts of natural sugars from fruit as part of the ancestral diet, but we’ve never historically been exposed to the massive amounts of added sugars that we see in today’s world of sweetened drinks, candies, cakes, cookies, as well as added sugars in everything from condiments to bread. Especially the massive quantity of sugar exposure from high fructose corn syrup, which appears in almost everything on the supermarket shelves!
One statement in the full version of the documentary that is debatable is that sugar and HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) are “the same”. While they are both terrible for your health and both toxic, there are certainly big differences in how the body processes HFCS versus table sugar or other forms of sugar. In a 2010 Princeton University study, researchers found that rats given water sweetened with HFCS gained significantly more weight than those given water sweetened with plain sugar, despite calorie intake being the same between both groups.
Princeton researchers also state: “In addition to causing significant weight gain in lab animals, long-term consumption of high-fructose corn syrup also led to abnormal increases in body fat, especially in the abdomen, and a rise in circulating blood fats called triglycerides”. HFCS consumption is clearly linked to increased heart disease and stroke risk
It’s been a few years now since I started gradually moving away from certain foods, but I never jumped on the band wagon of say, The Paleo Diet, amongst others. I thought it was just a fad. Now I’m not so sure.
The more I read about statistics like this, the more the food I see on the supermarket shelves just repulses me. We are being fed food that has an inherent addictive element (sugar!) that will ultimately kill us!
I never jumped on the band wagon of switching from butter to margarine either ( how could something synthetic be better for you than something natural?) And now, of course, opinion has come full circle and butter is suddenly deemed better for you, – albeit in moderation!
Same with sugar-free and fat-free anything. Why think that replacing something yummy and natural with something not so yummy and synthetic could possibly be better for you? I never understood that concept. And again, now the experts are saying that diet drinks and fat free yoghurts, etc. are in fact much worse for us than the originals ever were. Surprise!
Many of the cookbooks I now buy have been written by people who realize (one way or another) that our generation’s diet is killing us and if we don’t change it we face a devastating future for our offspring.
One such lady that began with a blog in a desperate attempt to swing her life back to normality, is Deliciously Ella deliciouslyella.com. She “started the blog as a way of dealing with a relatively rare illness, Postural Tachycardia Syndrome, which (she) was diagnosed with in September 2011. The illness had a pretty devastating effect on (her) life – (she) literally couldn’t walk down the street, slept for 16 hours a day, had never ending heart palpitations, was in chronic pain, had unbearable stomach issues, constant headaches and the list goes on – it was anything but fun! (She) tried healing through conventional medicine for about six months but it had little effect on (her) symptoms and was still bed-ridden 95% of the time…..Overnight (she) took up a whole foods, plant-based diet and gave up all meat, dairy, sugar, wheat, anything processed and all chemicals and additives..” And it worked!
Her’s is not the only story. There are many out there. Check out Gillian McKeith of “You are what you eat” gilianmckeith.com.
Many of these folks had very scary health issues that were incurable by Western medicine, but cured completely by a complete change in diet. Fortunately they all realised it for themselves, but they had to suffer terribly to get there. Don’t let that happen to you! Cut out the sugar and the sugar-free and fat-free products. Get back to basics and cook from scratch. Know what you are putting in your body. It is a temple, after all. Abuse it and lose it. Your choice.
Another amazing cookbook is Healing Foods by Neals Yard Remedies, published by Dorling Kindersley (DK). As expected of DK, a beautifully presented book, with some absolutely gorgeous recipes and lots of ingredients information. And a complete steal at only $25 for a hardback copy! Buy here!
“Cook your way to lifelong healthy living. Explore the healing properties of more than 175 ingredients. You’ll find out what each is good for, how to gain the maximum benefit from it, and ideas for simple, tasty preparations.”