Unclear on the Concept of Food Poisoning

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An article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) by researchers at Emory University and the CDC concludes that people with higher intakes of added sugars are more likely to have lower levels of HDL (good) cholesterol and higher triglyceride levels.

Deborah Kotz of U.S. News sees this and the Institute of Medicine s recent recommendation that the FDA regulate the amount of sodium in food as evidence that [t]he pressure is on the food industry to stop poisoning us with all that added salt and sugar that make Oreos, Coke, and Krispy Kreme doughnuts taste oh, so good.

Looking at this in the best possible light, you could say that she s trying to be ironic or facetious, says ACSH s Dr. Gilbert Ross. However, if you read the rest of her article, you know that is not her intent. This JAMA article is based on a dietary recall study, so already it s not the most reliable of sources, but she uses it and arbitrary salt guidelines as a basis to decry the twin evils of salt and sugar, and then she starts worrying about salt and sugar substitutes. The concepts contained in this unscientific essay are counterproductive solutions to non-problems.

Dr. Whelan agrees: This attack on sugar and salt is so over-the-top that it should make you laugh. She wants food companies to take added sugar out of foods, but what about naturally sugary juices? Orange juice is loaded with natural fructose. And she s against sugar but she s also against sugar substitutes. In other words, you shouldn t really enjoy food, since enjoying food is inherently bad. Her belief system dictates that food should only be used to meet strict nutritional requirements, and should never be enjoyed. It s puritanical, and it has nothing to do with science or health. Well, she can have her religion, but she should leave the rest of us alone.