Photo: Getty Images
The diet world has its own roller coaster of ups and downs with headlines singing the praises or the evils of various food groups. Sugar is the latest food back on the chopping block, thanks to science writer Gary Taubes and his lengthy assessment of sugar in the New York Times Magazine.
His article presented some of the most current scientific information linking the surge of current health issues from obesity and heart disease to certain forms of cancer to our over-consumption of sugar. And it’s not just the overload of calories, but that “sugar is a toxic substance that people abuse.”
This is not the first time the refined sweetener has gotten a bad rap. In the 1970s, William Dufty, married to early health food advocate and actress Gloria Swanson, broke the bad news about sugar when he wrote the bestselling book, Sugar Blues. This exposé asserted sugar was as addictive as nicotine or heroin and launched a national crusade to get the sugar out of our diets.
Almost 40 years later it seems like our diets are still too sweet—with added sugars in many of the packaged foods on our shelves. Will Taubes's article help us kick our sugar blues once and for all?
Sugar detox expert, Richele Henry works with women who are ready to take control of their cravings and put their own nourishment at the top of the “to-do list.”
“In our society, people are dependent on caffeine, sugar and processed foods to get them through their days,” Henry said. “Once they hit the mid-afternoon crash, they go for more.”
Most of her clients struggle with insatiable cravings, emotional eating and have a hard time saying no to food. She said they operate out of a guilt cycle that often looks like periods of deprivation, creating a boomerang effect leading to mindless eating or binging, then a wave of guilt, followed by punishment, which starts the cycle over again.
It’s a hard cycle to break even when you understand the research.