Is Sugar The New Tobacco?

If sugar is the new tobacco we should be labelling it with a big fat health warning

Sugar is toxic and is present in many foods that we consume every minute of the day.

It is in Bread, Flour Cakes, Scones, Sodas, Chocolate, Fruit juice, Cereals, Rice, Tinned foods. Do I need to go on?

Remember sugar is nutritionally empty and is a fuel that can only be stored or burned. Burning sugar gives our body the energy and storing it makes us fat. Conventional wisdom is that people who eat too much and exercise too little will become obese. However, groundbreaking research by DR RICHARD JOHNSON of the University of Colorado suggests that obesity is primarily related to a high sugar diet especially that of Fructose.

How is Fructose bad for you?

Fructose in the form of high fructose corn syrup used in processed food industry is toxic to the liver, just like tobacco and alcohol!

The food industry uses fructose as a sweetener in the form of High Fructose Corn Syrup. It is 73% sweeter than regular sugar and is in nearly all processed food. The food industry has given sugar more than fifty different names to confuse us all, such as, Sucrose, Dextrose, Maltose, Fructose, Glucose, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn syrup, Cane Juice, Dextrin, Barley malt, Beet sugar, Malt syrup, Fruit juice crystals, the list is never-ending. All of these new names allow for hidden sugars that the customer can not recognize from the labels or small print.

These so-called hidden sugars seem to be in everything nowadays. It seems that over the last fifty years that human health has deteriorated radically with the rise in the consumption of sugar. The food industry realized early on how addictive sugar was and adding it to foods could create a loyal customer base, putting profits before human health.

The reason why these refined carbohydrates get us all hooked is because when eaten they cause the brain to release a neurotransmitter called Dopamine. It is Dopamine that gives us the ‘pleasure feeling’, ever heard of comfort eating? This pleasure feeling is the reward that we get from eating, that in some cases overrides our ability to say no.

Health conditions associated with high sugar diets.

Long term exposure to sugar gives us a first prize in bad health which contribute to health conditions like:


High Blood Pressure,

Cardiovascular Disease,






So the question is, Are you eating yourself sick?

They say that sugar is more addictive than cocaine! To prove this try and stop it for a week or so, you’ll be shocked with how your body has grown dependant on it.

The issue with fat storing.

The problem with Fructose is that its metabolism favours Lipogenesis which means fat storing. It also:

Increases blood lipids,

Increases uric acid levels, (GOUT),

Increases obesity,

Increases the risk of fatty liver disease,

Increases blood pressure,

Increases fat around the middle portion of your body, the infamous ‘muffin top’.

it will take a 20 minute run to burn of a single can of a regular soda!

So constant eating of refined sugars is the major source of our obesity epidemic. The more we eat, the less our body is able to regulate our appetite, so we eat more and burn less. This stimulates weight gain and leads us down the road to all the diseases mentioned above.

In 2011 there were 366 million Diabetics in the world which was more than double that in the 1980s. In 30 years the incidence has doubled. If we don’t change what we are eating then I believe that we will be spending more money and time in our hospitals than ever before. Your body is not able to cope with excesses in sugar, e.g some chocolate bars contain 7 teaspoons of sugar, a can of soda contains 10 teaspoons of sugar.

You will need to go for a 20-minute run to burn off one can of Soda. Sugar is toxic and not good for your metabolism so if you’re looking for something sweet and not sickly look to nature it has not let us down yet.

Edward O’Reilly

Lifestyle Pharmacist

087 205 1039

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