Well, it’s part of the problem. For years many health experts explained the rates of increased obesity in the US (and the world) was due to too much sugar in the diet. For nearly 30 years this argument held merit….until recently.
The US reached a peak in sugar consumption in 1999 (108lbs a year per person!). Then, things changed. As Americans became more aware of the health risks of sugar people began consuming sugar free beverages, lowered their intake of sugar overall. Based on the experts reasoning this should have lead to a decrease in US obesity. However, and much to everyone’s surprise, our obesity rates have continued to rise! How is this possible? Were the experts wrong all along? Was sugar not the real culprit for Americans health issues? Not exactly.
The world of health is very complex. Each of us have numerous variables to consider when it comes to our health: age, sex, physical activity, stress, food options, knowledge of cooking, genetic background, cultural upbringing, etc. To point the finger at one particular “villain” is very difficult. If it was that easy then most of us would have trimmer waistlines and visit the doctor less often for health related issues. If you’re looking for a simple explanation as to why we’ve continued to grow our belly’s since kicking the sugar habit it’s quite simple….we eat too much and move too little.
Take for example the buffet and salad bar at a Whole Foods®. They’ve begun labeling the amount of calories in a serving for each tray. Next time you fix yourself a salad at Whole Foods® jot down the number of calories in your “healthy” salad that’s supposed to help you reach your fitness goals. Chances are it’s much higher than you’d expect, and that’s before you put the dressing on it.
Key Take Away: Sugar is not the villain. It’s merely a nutrient we consume in our food. A small amount is good for us. Too much, like any good thing, can lead to sever consequences. Stay focused on nutrient dense foods….and not too much.
STAY FIT MY FRIENDS!