For decades, Americans looking to shed pounds and reduce “love handles” have been bombarded with fad diets and unfulfilled promises.
The Cabbage Soup Diet, first published in a book in the 1960s, promised a loss of 17 pounds and all the cabbage soup a dieter could eat for a week – something we at Sip & Savor think is a particularly unappetizing form of calorie deprivation.
Since then, we’ve been promised supposed weight loss miracles by giving up one thing after another - red meat; fat; carbohydrates; any food that isn’t raw; and even by consuming freeze-dried exotic berries.
Today’s villain, by those who go around deciding “what’s in and what’s out” in the world of nutrition, is sugar. If good fats are the “It Girl” of current nutrition fads (avocado anyone?), sugar is the rebellious teen, expelled from school and not welcome to take your daughter to prom.
Every so often, we here at Sip & Savor find a rational and balanced discussion about how to approach calories and overall good health. Dr. David Katz, director of Yale University’s Prevention Research Center and editor-in-chief of the journal Childhood Obesity, explores the current day controversy over sugar in U.S. News & World Report by asking, “Are we sugar crazy?”
While Katz may not be a fan of our industry’s myriad beverage choices, he points out, when the body doesn’t have an adequate sugar supply, the body produces it in the liver from other sources of nutrients, which are necessary for good health.
To answer his question – “Are we sugar crazy?” – Katz concludes, “But to suggest that sugar is the only thing wrong with the modern diet and a poison is a distortion that risks both distraction and backlash.”
So what’s the lesson here? Beware of simplistic “solutions” to overweight and obesity. They never tell the whole story – and there is no silver bullet.