In the New York Times this morning I find that a study has been published that places the blame for 25,000 deaths per year in the US at the feet of sugary drinks. The Times article is here.
The study that they are reporting on is here. The Global Burden of Diseases Nutrition and Chronic Diseases Expert Group (NutriCoDE) examined mortality data from dietary surveys and pooled it with data on the health effects of sugar sweetened beverages with regard to diabetes, cancer and overall mortality. As you can imagine the effects were notable.
According to this report the deaths from sweet drinks is almost at 200,000 per year.
What is special about sweet drinks, you might ask? Is there any difference between the sugar in a Pepsi and the sugar in a Go-Gurt? Nope. There is nothing special about the sugar in a Pepsi, and the problem that this study cites in regards to drinks also applies to every bite of processed foods that we take in the US. I exaggerate, but eight out of ten processed foods on store shelves in the US contain added sugar.
The sugar added to your food is not necessary, except that food makers are trying to replace fats, and they have to replace them with something. Perhaps now that saturated fats are no longer the Ultimate Bag Guy of foods makers can now begin flavoring foods with genuinely natural ingredients. Perhaps now food makers can replace the sugars with succulent fats.
The study makers and the New York Times think we should eliminate sweet drinks from the food supply. I think we should eliminate processed foods from the food supply. We disagree in the fundamental identity of who “we” are. They believe that “WE” are the collective power of the government, forcing makers to quit making. I believe that “WE” is each individual family deciding that they can not trust the food maker or the government to protect them and keep their food safe. When we stop buying, as the market dries up, they quit making. In my world the market drives the marketer. If the government would advise that we all quit eating sugar, like they have, and the market quits eating it, the maker will quit making it. Put the percentage of the US Daily Allowance of sugar on every processed food label.
In my opinion, we owe it to ourselves and our families to make our own food. Convenience is killing us. I truly feel sorry for food makers, because their government long ago recommended that they quit putting a perfectly good natural ingredient into foods, forcing them to make adjustments that were dangerous, as it turns out. I wish I could advise them to just turn back the clock. Go back to the recipes of 1950. Unfortunately, the existing markets and moneys are entrenched, and there is only one safe food, the one I make in my kitchen.
So, to eliminate sugar from my diet I have to eliminate sweet drinks and processed foods. I have done this. Having done this, I now look and feel many years younger. My youthful mojo is back, and I am not counting on my government to help me. Help yourself.