Saturday, November 03, 2012

Saturday Stories: Big Sugar, Pinkwashing and Halloween

While I'm not always on the same page as Gary Taubes, there's no arguing he's a heck of a writer and a top notch journalist. Here's his fascinating piece from Mother Jones on how Big Sugar promotes and defends its product.

Author and blogger Bruce Bradley covers pinkwashing with a food marketer's lens.

Here's my piece in US News and World Report on why I worry less about Halloween and more about the remaining 364 days of the year.

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  1. Hey Yoni,
    In my experience, doctors generally tell you not to eat a lot of sugar - when my son was a baby, the doctor told me not to give my son any juice at all, but to offer fruit and water instead. It took a while for the penny to drop, but that's what we do now.

    Given that there isn't necessarily a consensus about what negative health effects sugar has, could you summarize what we do know for sure about sugar and its negative impacts on health?

    Do we know for sure that it raises LDL cholesterol? Are we certain it causes or exacerbates type 2 diabetes? Does it contribute more to fat gain than other aspects of the human diet?

    Enquiring minds and all that....

    1. Studies are unable to study "sugar" by itself in people. Instead we're stuck with long term studies that try to suss out impacts. Good news is that sugar sweetened beverage (SSBs) studies do shine a light on some things and strongly suggest their excess consumption contribute to heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

      As far as sugar uniquely causing more fat gain? Only in so far as for many SSBs are very significant caloric contributors.

  2. There were some scary ads around Washington, DC this summer extolling the virtues of salt in response to CDC's recommendations to lower salt in the diet. Their ad is called "A Little Salt". I couldn't believe my eyes when I read that they even state that people will be harmed if they consume only 1500 mg of salt a day! I wonder if they are following the sugar industry's footsteps on this one.