Expert Makes Case That Sugar Is A Toxin

In a lengthy article, Gary Taubes, a Robert Woods Johnson Foundation independent investigator, discusses in the New York Times (4/17, MM47, Taubes, Subscription Publication) claims made by pediatric hormone disorder specialist and childhood obesity expert Robert Lustig, MD, of the University of California-San Francisco School of Medicine, who makes a “persuasive case…that sugar is a ‘toxin’ or a ‘poison,'” including high-fructose corn syrup. Should Lustig prove to be right, then Americans’ “excessive consumption of sugar is the primary reason that the numbers of obese and diabetic Americans have skyrocketed in the past 30 years,” and the sweet substance “is also the likely dietary cause of several other chronic ailments widely considered to be diseases of Western lifestyles — heart disease, hypertension, and many common cancers among them.”

 

Study: More Than A Quarter Of US Children May Now Suffer From A Long-Term Health Problem

As part of a continuing series focusing on how childhood is changing in America, USA Today (4/13, Szabo) reports that “26% of children now suffer from a long-term health problem, says a 2010 study of more than 5,000 children ages two to eight in the Journal of the American Medical Association.” What’s more, “more than half of children in that study have had some kind of chronic illness — one that limits their abilities or requires special medication, equipment or services for at least 12 months — sometime in the past six years, the study” found. Unfortunately, young children are now “developing diseases once seen only in middle age: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, fatty livers and type 2 diabetes, says Sandra Hassink, a Delaware pediatrician who specializes in weight management.”