sugar

Everything, it seems, goes in cycles. For years we’ve been told that fat is bad and that we should avoid it whenever possible, which led to a host of low-fat and non-fat products —cookies that had less fat than their conventional counterparts, but much more sugar and often even more calories. Now it’s added sugar that’s the nutritional bête noir, and we’re being warned that it’s ‘hiding’ in foods you don’t expect — ketchup, for example.

But let’s face it folks, how can it be hiding when it’s listed right on the ingredients label? Still, added sugars are one of the foci of the latest culture wars.  And for some, that amounts to an ingredient that must be expunged...

Stakeholders, be they individuals or institutions, seek to sway public opinion and policy. Industries, often with the prefix Big, have manufactured doubt, provided financial resources and incentives for their views and delayed regulations. In nutritional science, every major food group has had its turn as the villain, and that includes vegetables, the most honored of foods, that may be deficient in needed micronutrients in strictly vegan diets. Most recently the fight has turned to sugar versus fats, fats are now good and sugar the great villain. Two historians provide a contrarian narrative in this week’s Science.

I will not summarize their story; it is lucid and concise, worth a read rather than an...

Obviously, we need food labels. We need to know what the product is in that multicolored can or box, and having the information on the nutritional content of the product can be helpful when used appropriately.  But some terms are less clear, and in some cases undefined and/ misleading. For example, ‘All natural’ has no FDA-approved definition, and ‘fresh’ might not be true if an item doesn’t sell quickly. All such labels can generally be termed ‘informational,’ and it’s up to the consumer to interpret them concerning their own needs.

There’s another kind of label on consumer products — the warning label — that we’re all familiar with on cigarette packages and alcohol-containing beverages concerning pregnant women. Some would like to see such labels on foods because of their...

Clostridium difficile is a bacterium that causes a life-threatening infection. According to the CDC, it is responsible for about 500,000 infections and 15,000 to 29,000 deaths every year in the United States.

Though the bacterium can infect healthy individuals, it is of particular concern to those who are hospitalized or are taking antibiotics. Antibiotics can wipe out the normal flora of the gut, and C. difficile is happy to fill the vacuum. An infection with this pathogen can cause horrible cramping and 10 to 15 episodes of watery diarrhea per...

We want to hear what kids around the nation (and globe!) want to know about science and health. Kicking off our new segment, #KuriousKiddos, are Isaiah and Gabriel who ask us this: Our mom dilutes our juice with water because she says too much sugar is bad for us. Is it healthier to drink diluted juice or the real deal?

Watch the video to hear our answer!

If you'd like to submit a question to #KuriousKiddos, please e-mail us at: simovskaa@acsh.org

 

 

So reducing sugar-sweetened beverages and overall sugar consumption should decrease the obesity surge, right? Or at least that's what those who are advocating taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages are telling us. Probably soon they'll be promoting taxes on all things sugary — especially those containing the dreaded added sugars. But so far, there doesn't seem to be any real evidence that such taxes, indeed such a lowering of sugary foods and drinks will do anything about the obesity problem.

Well, don't look here for such support‚ especially since I just read a new study from Australia that found that when sugar consumption decreased, obesity increased. This surprising correlation supports the position we've taken...

Soda taxes are many things. Obnoxious. Unscientific. An example of government overreach. The one thing they aren't is racist, yet precisely that case was made by Seattle Times reporter Gene Balk1

His argument goes like this: Blacks and Hispanics consume more sugary beverages than whites and Asians, while whites and Asians drink more diet beverages than blacks and Hispanics. Because the tax does not apply to diet beverages, it is racist. 

Supporting data provided by the Seattle...

Food and nutrition companies always capitalize on whatever fad diets are currently in fashion to shamelessly promote their products. Science is of secondary concern, if it's a concern at all. For instance, Centrum Silver is running an advertisement that brags about its (utterly worthless) multivitamins being gluten- and GMO-free.

Nestlé wants in on the action, too. This company is playing a TV commercial for ProNourish, a nutritional drink. As one might expect, the company eagerly and unscientifically boasts about the product's lack of...

If this trend continues, Canadians may someday have more access to sugar than they have to ice skating. 

New government research shows that when it comes to packaged foods and beverages sold in Canada, two of every three items contain added sugar of some kind. That jarring news comes from a joint report by Public Health Ontario and the University of Waterloo, made public today. 

The labels of more than 40,000 products "sold at national supermarket chains of a major Canadian grocery retailer" in March of 2015 were analyzed, in an effort to identify any of 30 terms that indicated the presence of sugar, "everything from sugar to dextrose, high-fructose corn syrup, glucose, fructose and fruit juice concentrate," states a...

For years - no, make that decades - we've been warned about the dangers of dietary fat. It has too many calories, it leads to high cholesterol and heart disease, too much can cause obesity, and on and on. But lately we've been told that the sugar industry ("Big Sugar"?) had a hand (or perhaps an underhand) in demonizing fat so that sugar might be used to add flavor to otherwise not-so-yummy low or no fat products. There's been a fair amount of research lately that focuses on the possibly deleterious effects ot too much dietary sugar, leading to various movements to tax or otherwise inhibit sugary beverages in particular.

Apparently such occurrences are having impacts on consumers' dietary choices, perhaps not for the better.

What could be better for a dieter than non-fat...