It will be interesting to see how many processed foods take out the added sugar. What about kid's breakfast cereals? Not only is the sugar dangerous but also the processed grains in them.
Sugar poses enough health risks that it should be considered a controlled
substance just like alcohol and tobacco, contend a team of researchers from the
University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).
In an opinion piece called “The Toxic Truth About Sugar” that was published Feb. 1 in the journal Nature, Robert
Lustig, Laura Schmidt and Claire Brindis argue that it’s a misnomer to consider
sugar just “empty calories.” They write: “There is nothing empty about these
calories. A growing body of scientific evidence is showing that fructose can
trigger processes that lead to liver toxicity and a host of other chronic
diseases. A little is not a problem, but a lot kills — slowly.”
Almost everyone’s heard of — or personally experienced — the proverbial sugar
high, so perhaps the comparison between sugar and alcohol or tobacco shouldn’t
come as a surprise. But it’s doubtful that Americans will look favorably upon
regulating their favorite vice. We’re a nation that’s sweet on sugar: the
average U.S. adult downs 22 teaspoons of sugar a day, according to the American Heart
Association, and surveys have found that teens swallow 34 teaspoons.
To counter our consumption, the authors advocate taxing sugary foods and
controlling sales to kids under 17. Already, 17% of U.S. children and teens are obese, and across the world
the sugar intake has tripled in the past 50 years. The increase has helped
create a global obesity pandemic that contributes to 35 million annual deaths
worldwide from noninfectious diseases including diabetes, heart disease and
“There are good calories and bad calories, just as there are good fats and
bad fats, good amino acids and bad amino acids, good carbohydrates and bad
carbohydrates,” Lustig, a professor of pediatrics and director of the Weight
Assessment for Teen and Child Health (WATCH) program at UCSF, said in a statement. “But sugar is toxic beyond its calories.”
The food industry tries to imply that “a calorie is a calorie,” says Kelly
Brownell, director of the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale
University. “But this and other research suggests there is something different
about sugar,” says Brownell.