California Dining


Sweet, Pros and Cons of Sugar


* Sugar can decrease growth hormone (the key to staying youthful and lean)
* Sugar feeds cancer
* Sugar increases cholesterol
* Sugar can weaken eyesight
* Sugar contributes to osteoporosis
* Sugar can interfere with the absorption of protein
* Sugar causes food allergies
* Sugar contributes to diabetes
* Sugar can cause cardiovascular disease
* Sugar can impair the structure of DNA

* Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness in children
* Sugar can contribute to eczema in children
* Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children
* Sugar contributes to the reduction in defense against bacterial infection (infectious diseases)
When you head to a fair of festival temptations are everywhere you look. Cotton candy, kettle corn, ice cream sprinkled with colorful sugar confetti, and lemonade in flavors that include strawberry and raspberry, all look and taste so sweet and delicious. The secret ingredient isn't so mysterious--it's sugar. The breakthrough for the current understanding of sweetness occurred in 2001, when experiments identified the gene T1R3 as a factor in perception of sweetness. The sweetness receptor in mammals differs between species--New World monkeys do not find aspartame sweet, while Old World monkeys and apes (including humans) all do. Domestic cats can't perceive sweetness at all.

Americans are consuming more calories than we did in the 1950s, partially due to foods in which sweeteners are added to appeal to our tastebuds. Our per capita consumption of sugar & corn syrup used in pizzas, beverages, snacks and everything under the sun increased 43 pounds, or 35% per year. The average adult consumes between 152 and 155 pounds of sugar annually!

Can sugar be good for you or is it bad? Professor Peter Clifton from the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute says the health impacts of sugar may have been over-stated. He says there are no controlled studies showing that eating sugar causes high blood pressure or that cutting sugar alone reduces high blood pressure. Sugar is just another form of over-consumed calories, easily available and very palatable but no more metabolically deadly than starch or fat calories and certainly not equivalent to alcohol, according to him.


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