If I ever want a good laugh all I have to do is look at the medical news–especially the news dedicated to nutrition. According to a recent study, “U.S. Guidelines for the Consumption of Sugar May be Too High.” Ya think?!
Here’s a great way to help trim our deficit–stop funding stupid studies where we already know the answers. In a country where 70 percent of people are either overweight or obese, how could we not be consuming too much sugar?
In this “groundbreaking” study (and I use that term very loosely), it showed that adults who consumed 25 percent of their daily calories in fructose or, even worse, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) had increased levels of cholesterol and triglycerides. This is hardly news. But there are two aspects of this study that may surprise you:
- The impact the HFCS had on the participants’ cholesterol and triglycerides didn’t occur over a lifetime of eating this way…both levels increased after just two weeks!
- The amount of HFCS the people in the study consumed each day–25 percent of their total calories–may sound like a lot, but it’s actually within the government guidelines!
There is just so much wrong with this that I don’t even know where to start. The government clearly knows nothing about nutrition, and what it does know is wrong and misguided.
Here’s a quote about this study that exemplifies how our government thinks: “While there is evidence that people who consume sugar are more likely to have heart disease or diabetes, it is controversial as to whether high sugar diets may actually promote those diseases.”
It doesn’t even make sense–and neither does following the USDA food pyramid.
First of all, the Department of Agriculture should not be in charge of recommending how or what we eat. Their mission is to promote American agriculture by growing and selling more food…sounds like a conflict of interest if I’ve ever heard one.
Let me tell you how the USDA sets its guidelines. First of all, there are no scientists or nutritionists on the panels–just lobbyists. They continue to argue until their special interest gets its share of the pyramid (or food plate, as they’ve re-classified it). The foods that are the most recommended are the ones that receive the largest subsidies from our government.
And to top it all off, if you look at these guidelines from a calorie perspective (not that I am a big proponent of calorie counting), they’re actually encouraging people to consume more calories than we need.
This is precisely why we’re the fattest nation on earth. We simply eat too much–certainly a lot more than we used to. And most of that increase has been in the form of carbohydrates. Women are eating 335 calories more per day than in 1970; men are eating 168. That equates to 1,775 pounds of food per person per year, compared to 1,497 per person per year in 1970. Where did the “experts” recommending all of that extra food think it was going to go? It’s gone around our waists, clogged our arteries, ruined our joints, and has made us a nation of unhealthy people.
So, we have government guidelines that encourage us to consume more food, leading to happy big agribusiness. Then we get obese and all of the attendant health problems that go along with that, so Big Pharma steps in to sell us drugs. It is a total win-win for everyone–except the American consumer (i.e. you and me).
The best thing you can do for yourself is to ignore the government nutrition guidelines. Use common sense to guide you towards what you know are healthy options. And if you need some help figuring it out, you can always refer back to the free bonus gifts you received with a subscription to my monthly newsletter, Logical Health Alternatives.