Is Sugar Toxic?

Discussion in 'The Bar' started by GSD, Oct 21, 2011.

  1. GSD

    GSD Active Member

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    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/17/magazine/mag-17Sugar-t.html?_r=4



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    On May 26, 2009, Robert Lustig gave a lecture called “Sugar: The Bitter Truth,†which was posted on YouTube the following July. Since then, it has been viewed well over 800,000 times, gaining new viewers at a rate of about 50,000 per month, fairly remarkable numbers for a 90-minute discussion of the nuances of fructose biochemistry and human physiology.

    Lustig is a specialist on pediatric hormone disorders and the leading expert in childhood obesity at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine, which is one of the best medical schools in the country. He published his first paper on childhood obesity a dozen years ago, and he has been treating patients and doing research on the disorder ever since.

    The viral success of his lecture, though, has little to do with Lustig’s impressive credentials and far more with the persuasive case he makes that sugar is a “toxin†or a “poison,†terms he uses together 13 times through the course of the lecture, in addition to the five references to sugar as merely “evil.†And by “sugar,†Lustig means not only the white granulated stuff that we put in coffee and sprinkle on cereal  technically known as sucrose  but also high-fructose corn syrup, which has already become without Lustig’s help what he calls “the most demonized additive known to man.â€Â

    It doesn’t hurt Lustig’s cause that he is a compelling public speaker. His critics argue that what makes him compelling is his practice of taking suggestive evidence and insisting that it’s incontrovertible. Lustig certainly doesn’t dabble in shades of gray. Sugar is not just an empty calorie, he says; its effect on us is much more insidious. “It’s not about the calories,†he says. “It has nothing to do with the calories. It’s a poison by itself.â€Â

    If Lustig is right, then our excessive consumption of sugar is the primary reason that the numbers of obese and diabetic Americans have skyrocketed in the past 30 years. But his argument implies more than that. If Lustig is right, it would mean that sugar is also the likely dietary cause of several other chronic ailments widely considered to be diseases of Western lifestyles  heart disease, hypertension and many common cancers among them.

    The number of viewers Lustig has attracted suggests that people are paying attention to his argument. When I set out to interview public health authorities and researchers for this article, they would often initiate the interview with some variation of the comment “surely you’ve spoken to Robert Lustig,†not because Lustig has done any of the key research on sugar himself, which he hasn’t, but because he’s willing to insist publicly and unambiguously, when most researchers are not, that sugar is a toxic substance that people abuse. In Lustig’s view, sugar should be thought of, like cigarettes and alcohol, as something that’s killing us.

    This brings us to the salient question: Can sugar possibly be as bad as Lustig says it is?

    It’s one thing to suggest, as most nutritionists will, that a healthful diet includes more fruits and vegetables, and maybe less fat, red meat and salt, or less of everything. It’s entirely different to claim that one particularly cherished aspect of our diet might not just be an unhealthful indulgence but actually be toxic, that when you bake your children a birthday cake or give them lemonade on a hot summer day, you may be doing them more harm than good, despite all the love that goes with it. Suggesting that sugar might kill us is what zealots do. But Lustig, who has genuine expertise, has accumulated and synthesized a mass of evidence, which he finds compelling enough to convict sugar. His critics consider that evidence insufficient, but there’s no way to know who might be right, or what must be done to find out, without discussing it.

    If I didn’t buy this argument myself, I wouldn’t be writing about it here. And I also have a sclaimer to acknowledge. I’ve spent much of the last decade doing journalistic research on diet and chronic disease  some of the more contrarian findings, on dietary fat, appeared in this magazine â€â€Ã¢â‚¬â€œ and I have come to conclusions similar to Lustig’s.

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  2. Doug Masters

    Doug Masters ok

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    nice article, I will have to sit down at some point and watch the vid

    bravo GSD
     
  3. Mlaw

    Mlaw Quite Contrarian Gold

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    It's definitely addictive
     
  4. ChuckZ

    ChuckZ You're so pusillanimous, oh yea.

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    Lotsa words n' stuff.
     
  5. wicked smaaaht

    wicked smaaaht New Member

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    you died two hours ago...RIP

    oh by the way.. diabetes...your sugar should be at about 80-120
     
  6. Partyxanimal

    Partyxanimal Well-Known Member

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    Drinking sugar in my coffee right now :lo5:
     
  7. wicked smaaaht

    wicked smaaaht New Member

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    a little sugar is fine...it's the soda freaks that weight 250 plus that it affects
     
  8. ChuckZ

    ChuckZ You're so pusillanimous, oh yea.

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    I have it in my Iced Coffee every morning. :lo5:
     
  9. GSD

    GSD Active Member

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    In general moderation is likely the best thing

    But like smoking or second hand smoke it's affects on each person will be different
     
  10. Partyxanimal

    Partyxanimal Well-Known Member

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    I'm smoking a cigarette while drinking my coffee with sugar right now :lo5:
     
  11. ChuckZ

    ChuckZ You're so pusillanimous, oh yea.

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    :sadbye:
     
  12. Partyxanimal

    Partyxanimal Well-Known Member

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    I'll stick around long enough for beer and pizza in a little while before i keel over :D
     
  13. GSD

    GSD Active Member

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    :jj:

    I miss pizza, beer & sugar :sad:
     
  14. wicked smaaaht

    wicked smaaaht New Member

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    :cheer:
     
  15. Mr. Potato Head

    Mr. Potato Head ~Would Like to Play~ Gold

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    Well, if by 'sugar' you mean 'sfn', and by 'toxic' you mean 'full of low life cock loving faggots', then yes, sugar is toxic.

    (I have nothing against SFN itself, just 90% of the People that post there.)
     
  16. ChuckZ

    ChuckZ You're so pusillanimous, oh yea.

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    You have an account there?? :c
     
  17. GSD

    GSD Active Member

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    Thanks bro [​IMG]

    The video is good

    Is Chuck in your top 10%?
     
  18. tomtom

    tomtom Well-Known Member

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    I'm pretty much sugar free, don't drink the diet pops either as I can't stand the taste of artificial sweetener. Won't touch either. Much of my family farms here in Illinois and corn and soybeans being their cash crops. The government subsidizes companies to sweeten with it. Can't stand the taste of it and wish they would quit putting it in stuff.
     
  19. GSD

    GSD Active Member

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    Do they grow GMO crops? Anything organic?
     
  20. tomtom

    tomtom Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure about GMO, there are hybrids if that is the same. My immediate family isn't in the farming business and my extent of farming is little more than hayrack rides and a few tomato type plants here at the house.

    As for organic, I could pretty much guarantee none of it is organic.