Sugar vs. Fat: We’ve Been Misled

How can you trust research results?

People are confused as to what they can eat. Sugar vs. fat – which should you cut out? What’s good for you? What’s bad for you?

Today more than two-thirds of the population is overweight. Two decades ago it was only 25% of the population.  Much of our weight gain has come from not getting the right information, and therefore, not taking the right actions. It’s no wonder so many people have thrown their hands up in the air and have just given up.

Just this week, the New York Times broke the story about how the sugar industry used its own research in the late 1960’s to down play the correlation between sugar and heart disease. Instead, they promoted studies that fat as the biggest factor in heart disease.

To quote from the article, How the Sugar Industry Shifted Blame to Fat,

The internal sugar industry documents, recently discovered by a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco, and published Monday in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest that five decades of research into the role of nutrition and heart disease, including many of today’s dietary recommendations, may have been largely shaped by the sugar industry.

That’s infuriating!

While some involved may try to distance themselves by saying that medical research wasn’t was rigorous 50 years ago, the article goes on to say:

Last year, an article in The New York Times revealed that Coca-Cola, the world’s largest producer of sugary beverages, had provided millions of dollars in funding to researchers who sought to play down the link between sugary drinks and obesity. In June, The Associated Press reported that candy makers were funding studies that claimed that children who eat candy tend to weigh less than those who do not.

If you’ve ever been on a low-fat diet or struggled to achieve a healthy weight, I’m sure you’re also upset about scientific data that cannot be relied on. We know that sugar is a contributor to inflammation.

So how do we deal with this lack of reliable info about our food and our health?

  • Eat fresh food. Stay on the outer ring of the grocery store where you will find fresh fruits, vegetables and lean meats.
  • Eat bright food. The beige-er it is, the worse it probably is for you.
  • Avoid frankenfood. Anything that’s been packaged and processed is probably not good for you.
  • Do your own research. Pull in information from multiple sources.
  • Make your own food choices. Pay attention to how your body feels after eating.
  • Seek out health care professionals (like us) who help patients heal from chronic illness

We recommend out Michael Pollan’s book In Defense of Food for a well-researched and practical approach to making good food choices.

Nutrition plays a big component to all we do here. If you are struggling to manage a chronic condition, I encourage you to make an appointment to see how we might be able to help.

Dr. Steve Puckette, D.C.