On the BBC Breakfast Show this morning (22/05/2013) Dr Aseem Malhotra was invited on to discuss the effect added sugar has on us. He also has an article in the BMJ. If you are a follower of this blog you will know all about the issues at the heart of the sugar debate. It seems the debate may be escalating.
A recent study showed that the consumption of just 1 can of fizzy drink per day will increase the risk of developing diabetes by 22%. Considering this information is from scrupulous academic studies and not a daily tabloid, it should be difficult to argue with. However criticism of the research came from some expected and also unexpected places.
An expected opponent to the research was the British Soft Drink Association. They downplayed the implications of these results by suggesting that the study had not taken family history into account. We wonder why anyone would be surprised that the British Soft Drink Association sought to diminish the legitimacy of these results.
Opponents to the dangers of sugar have previously stated that maintaining a healthy weight is far more crucial in preventing Type 2 Diabetes than sugar consumption. A spokesperson for Diabetes UK stressed that the findings were apparently not definitive. The authors of the study however, stated that the findings were not brought on by obesity, but the high sugar content of the beverage.
In an attempt to silence some of this criticism, a study of 175 countries demonstrated that for every 150 sugar based calories consumed daily (a typical can of coke) there was a monumental 11 fold increased risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. These results were formed completely independent of body mass index or activity levels.
So if sugar is not to blame, what is the food industry pointing their finger at? Well it is predictable that they think a lack of physical activity is to blame. In fact, there has been little if any change in activity levels over the last few decades, while the prevalence of obesity has sky rocketed.
If the food industries were correct in their views, you would expect to see exercise and activity levels decrease as obesity levels rose. This is clearly not the case and leaves the food industries opinion on activity levels redundant.
Try and follow the logic of the current advice on sugar.
1 can of regular Cola = 9 teaspoons of added sugar. This is 3x the upper limit of daily sugar consumption for an 8 year old. The UK GDA says 9 teaspoons of added sugar is 39% of the recommended daily sugar intake. That would mean a parent would think it acceptable to feed their children 2½ cans of cola every day! That’s 9 teaspoons of sugar per day, 63 in a week, 252 in a month and 3,024 teaspoons of extra sugar every year. On which planet would this be considered acceptable healthy living for an 8 year old?
It took 50 years from the first time evidence (in the BMJ) linking smoking to lung cancer caused any effective legislation to be proposed. It would appear Big Food has taken a similar approach to preventing the knowledge that sugar is bad for us from becoming common knowledge.
What may be most revealing of is that for Dr Malhotra’s interview on BBC Breakfast this morning, 10 separate companies or organisations that are directly involved in the carbonated beverage industry were asked to appear on the panel. All of them claimed to be unavailable. If that doesn’t scream guilty, what does?
Diabetes has consistently been news in recent weeks. Research published into the effect of fizzy drinks on diabetes has been highlighted by a number of newspapers, stating that as little as 1 can per day will increase your chances of developing the condition. A recent article in the Express has stated that there may be something else to worry about, and that is the people that don’t know they have Type 2 Diabetes.
The research initially highlighted that 2/3 of Britons are unaware that having a large waistline can significantly increase your chances of developing Type 2 Diabetes. Individuals can often be under the impression that by having a regular BMI level, they will not be at risk.
This is not the case however, as those individuals with a regular BMI but large waistline can be especially at risk. Diabetes UK state that men can be classed as having a large waist if it exceeds 35 inches. For women, it is said that they would be considered to have a large waist if it exceeds 31.5 inches.
Although the point being made concerning waist lines is correct, we wonder where these specific waist measurements came from. Are individual variations for height and build as well as others being taken into account? Food for thought.
The current level for Type 2 Diabetes in the UK is 4 million. By the year 2035, it is estimated that this figure will reach 6.25 million. It could be considered even more worrying that an estimated 850,000 people are living with the condition without any knowledge.
The fact that such a high number of people can be living with Type 2 Diabetes without knowing it, suggests that people are not fully aware that having a normal BMI does not make them exempt.
We must also consider that if the current rate holds, then within the decade we could have a situation the NHS could not handle. Within 10 years it is thought that 700,000 new people could suffer from Diabetes, with Type 2 accounting for the majority of this increase.
If we know that the expected increase in Diabetics over the next decade is unlikely to be able to be handled by the NHS, surely we should be looking at other avenues.
At the Natural Ketosis Company we have amazing results at helping individuals who suffer from Type 2 Diabetes. That is because we understand the effect that cheap carbs, starch and sugar has on blood sugar levels. By eating a low carb high protein diet you can control your blood sugar levels through diet alone.
A recent article in the Daily Mail has stated that the latest dieting craze of fasting is dangerous and unhealthy. Despite this, fasting diets have received endorsements from various celebrities. Obviously it wouldn’t be the first time a celeb has put their name to an unhealthy fad diet, nor will it be the last.
Fasting diets such as the 5:2 diet involve the dieter eating normally for 5 days of the week, then fasting on 2 days.
On such fasting days individuals are asked to consume no more than 500 calories. Of course a huge problem arises here; in that the customer’s bad habits towards food are not being corrected. During the normal eating days individuals will continue to eat in the same way that has led them to this position. Even more likely is that fasters will feel like they can be even more indulgent on their non-fast days.
Of course, human nature being what it is- if we are told we can eat what we want on non-fast days, we will literally eat what we want when we want. Healthy eating and a healthy relationship with food is not being taught.
And of course a healthy way of changing your diet is not being taught as all that is being recommended is ‘eat less’. Could it be any less sustainable or reductive?
The diet also seems to fall short when considering the long term sustainability of any weight loss it afforded. Can you really imagine being 15 years down the fasting-line and still confessing to friends that you can’t have that drink because today is a fast day? Any weight loss programme that an individual undertakes must be able to undertaken for life.
The culture of Yo-Yo dieting has been created partly by diets that are unsustainable, due to their inherent nature, but also due to people’s short sighted ambitions concerning weight loss. Any diet that can provide fast weight loss is favoured over healthy and sustainable weight loss. Why? You have as much an idea as us.
Despite having said all this, there are of course those inevitable celebs that are raving about how effective fasting is. That’s all fine. We eagerly await the future news articles about how quickly those celebs have put their weight back on. Yeah we’re talking to you Schofield.
Welcome to The Natural Ketosis Company’s blog. We are fed up with the abundance of weight loss myths and miracle solutions that constantly appear in the press. Therefore, we have decided to expose the ridiculous claims that are prevalent in the diet industry and, hopefully in a humorous way, give you our honest opinion about them. We love to hear your opinions so please do not be afraid to comment!