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What Got Us Into This Mess?

What Got Us Into This Mess? 

From the beginning of time, the taste of sweetness has appealed to human beings and attracted us.  We read in scripture of eating locusts and wild honey; we read of Samson killing the lion and eating the honey inside the carcass.  We read of a “land flowing with milk and honey,” and that manna had the taste of “wafers made with honey.”  So it’s obvious that sweet taste is something we desire, and something we seek to eat.  Even Eve was tempted with a fruit that was delicious and desirable.

But it’s only recently (as in the past couple of hundred years), and even more recently (since “fast food” was developed), that sweet taste–and with it, refined sugar and sugar substitutes, as well as genetically modified sugar beets and chemical sweeteners–have gained footage in the food dollar.

So how did we get into this mess?

We now know the connections between sugar consumption and Diabetes Type II.  We know that obesity has skyrocketed.  Food processors have cut back on fat content and added sweeteners to compensate.  Even school-aged children are showing signs of addiction to sugar.  What chance do the rest of us have?  And how (if it is possible) can we take the reins back into our hands and get our sugar addictions under control?

Answers in History

 sugarcone

At one time, sugar was a rare commodity.  Either you found a bees’ nest, or you kept the blackstrap molasses when the sugar beets or sugar cane were crushed.  Sugar in colonial times sold in small, compressed cones that looked like the picture above.

See the little “nippers” on the side of the plate?  That’s how sugar was apportioned.  A tiny nip of the sweet cone, and people could sweeten their lemonade.  Sugar was sold in pharmacies, along with other drugs.  And a cone like this would last a very long time.  People relied upon the natural, healthy sweetness of fruits to satisfy their sweet tooth.  The taffy pulls, baked cakes, and cookies were either made with honey or molasses as a rule, and they were for rare and special occasions.

Perhaps that is one factor that brought us to this point.  We have inherited from our ancestors the sense that sweetness is a rare and special treat, and in an effort to compensate for the other areas where we perceive ourselves to fall short, we make a batch of brownies, or a plate of cookies to take to a neighbor.  We take our kids out for fast food, and their meal contains a sweet dessert.  Meals out offer the inevitable dessert menu.

Sweetness bombards us.  It’s at every party, every celebration; every occasion.  It is our perceived key of kindness.

 So What Can We Do?

So what are we to do?

Somewhere, in all of this, there is an answer.  If we can look upon using sugar in small quantities, as in the little colonial cone, that can help.  If we create an expectation for ourselves, that we will only eat one sweet item–and we premeasure it–we may have the self control to get the sugar addictions under control.  For some of us, we will need to completely quit.  And it is possible to do that.

Even more possible is the ability to create healthy options that satisfy us when we are not hungry.  Our danger zone is when we are past the point of merely being hungry and are approaching ravenous.  Or we may be in trouble when we use the promise of something sweet as an emotional reward.

If you or someone you love faces this issue, you might want to consider the Sweet Freedom from Sugar Training Course.  I’ll be launching this breakthrough program in a few short days.  It has all of the information you need to become free from addiction to sugar.

You may be part of my regular list for the Health Secret. You may be a friend on Facebook.  You may be a patient of mine, or already on the list to learn about Sweet Freedom from Sugar when it comes out.

May I ask a favor of you?  I’d like to send you a quick survey (only 12 questions), to learn exactly what the concerns are that you have about sugar.  If sugar IS an issue for you, would you please take a few moments and fill out the survey?  I’ll send it out this week.  And if you already know you want to be free from sugar addiction, please feel free to indicate your interest here.  In the meantime, thank you.

To your dynamic health and energy!  Dr. Stan

food Uncategorized

Frozen food consumption on decline

Fresh fruits and vegetables will always trump frozen. But frozen foods are healthier than ‘not-fresh’ fruits and vegetables. Freezing foods does not make them unhealthy. Foods become unhealthy when processors add preservatives, non-food ingredients, toxic additives, flavors, and colorings. The article is right on: http://www.nationaljournal.com/economy/is-the-frozen-food-industry-thawing-out-20140708

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5 ways to help you kick sugar in a week

Here are 5 ways to help you kick the sugar habit: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/wellness-today/diet-and-nutrition_b_5411759.html

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Negative Effects of Sugar

Joy McCarthy’s take on sugar and it’s negative effects:

http://www.joyoushealth.ca/blog/2014/05/16/negative-effects-of-sugar/

sugar

Sugar and Obesity—Is There a Relationship?

We have been told for years that if you eat fat, you will become fat. This experiment on the American public, without scientific support, was done without our consent. The food industry has taken full advantage of this ‘theory’ and placed sugar in place of fat in our food—fat-free, reduced fat, ‘healthy’ (because it has no fat). Since that time, the rate of overweight and obese people has jumped at the same rate as the increase in sugar consumption.

It is now estimated that the average American ingests about ½ pound of sugar each day. Of the 600,000 food items available on the grocery shelves, 80% of them have added sugar. A child who drinks one can of soda pop per day increases his risk of obesity by 60%.

I found this interesting bit of information. Let’s say it takes 2000 calories a day to maintain your body’s basic functions—thinking, muscle movement, digestion, other organ functioning. Sugar is converted into energy (ATP) to perform those functions and many more.

If you eat 2000 calories a day, you feel good, and you don’t gain weight because that is what your body needs.

However, if 500 calories of sugar is added to your 2000-calorie diet, it is immediately converted into fat, because the body does not need that much sugar that fast. This means that you will only ingest 1500 more calories during the day to maintain basic body functions. Since the body needs 2000 calories, the body feels hungry, and you may even have low blood sugar. Basically, you feel crappy (a medical term!). So, you eat 500 more calories to meet your caloric needs and you feel better. You are now on a 2500 calorie diet, and gaining weight in fat.

So how much is 500 calories of sugar? It is equivalent to 31 teaspoons of sugar. There are 512 calories in a 44 ounce Super Big Gulp; 364 calories in a 32 ounce Big Gulp; 210 calories in a Mrs. Fields chocolate chip cookie. As you can see, it is easy to eat or drink 500 calories of sugar in a day, and much of it could be in one sitting. Some people I have know buy a Big Gulp in the morning and drink a little bit all day long, extending their fast intake of sugar throughout the day.

What can you do about it?

Stop eating sugar! But that is much easier said than done. Because sugar is added to processed food, you must read the label on everything in a can or box. Although there are over 250 different names for sugar, most of them you can recognize. Most everything that ends in -ose is a sugar. And don’t be fooled by the label that has sugar as the 3rd ingredient, but has fructose, maltose, and who knows what else at ingredient number 6, 9 and 11, making sugar the #1 ingredient.

Some people have found a friend who will do the sugar-free push with them and provide support and insight. This makes it a lot more fun. There are books and programs that are also helpful.

Some people who are addicted have needed the insight and help of a health coach.

Is it worth it?

Sugar, with its accompanying insulin, is highly inflammatory in the body. Inflammation causes discomfort and pain. This may include headaches, joint pain, muscle aches, poor sleep. Sugar feeds viruses, bacteria and cancer cells. Yeast and Candida organisms thrive on sugar. These cause gas, bloating, itching and a whole host of other problems.

When you are off sugar, your energy will improve, discomforts will reduce, your mind will become clearer and freedom from the shackles of sugar will be exhilarating. It is definitely worth it.

I will soon be releasing my highly successful program, Sweet Freedom From Sugar. If you would like to be placed on the interest list to learn more about it, sign up here.

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Stevia better than sugar?

Is Stevia better than sugar?

http://www.completeherbalguide.com/2014/06/is-organic-stevia-better-than-sugar-and.html

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Benefits of bananas

Who knew bananas had so many benefits! Check out this list:

http://www.naturalcuresnotmedicine.com/2014/05/reading-youll-never-look-banana-way.html

colds

The Not-So-Common, Common Cold

The “Not-So-Common” Common Cold

Common Colds Shouldn’t be so Common

A recent Wall Street Journal article (March 24, 2014) talked about the common cold.  It stated that the average adult has 2 to 5 colds per year while school children may have up to 7 to 10 colds per year.  It also stated that the average cold lasts 18 days.  And conventional doctors say zinc, echinacea or vitamin C are not the answers–the evidence is not conclusive that any of them help.

Dr. Gardner’s comments:  Although I recognize 2 to 5 colds a year is ‘average,’ having any more than 0 or 1 cold a year is not healthy.  ‘Average’ people do not have healthy immune systems. 

So: How do you build the immune system?

  1. Get off sugar and processed food, which suppress the immune system!
  2. Get proper nutrients—eat real food and high-quality supplements.
  3. Reduce stress—poor sleep, emotional stuff, finances, relationships.
  4. Exercise releases redox signaling molecules which help fight all infections.
  5. There are supplements that specifically build the killer T cells and support the immune system.
  6. And yes, zinc, echinacea, and vitamin C all can benefit our health.

When you get a cold, what should you do?

  1. Get rest, especially if sleep-deprivation is the cause of the stress.
  2. Oil of Oregano has the strongest anti-viral properties of all the essential oils.
  3. High dose vitamin C, 6 grams per day, as it takes that much to replace the vitamin C depletion in the white cells during a viral infection.
  4. Drink plenty of fluids to flush out toxins released as part of the infection.

To your dynamic health and energy,

Stan Gardner, MD, CNS

sugar sugar addiction sugar cravings sugar ingestion

Top 10 Ways to Know if You Are Addicted to Sugar

Five years ago when I first wrote on the effects of sugar and its addictive potential, there were a lot of questions and doubts that sugar is addictive.  The Harvard Study, printed in the June 26, 2013 issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, puts those questions to rest.

Twelve overweight or obese men age 18 to 35 were given a milk shake on two separate occasions.  The milkshakes were the same calories, nutrients and taste.  One caused high blood sugar and the other did not cause high blood sugar.  A functional MRI done four hours after ingestion of the shake slowed greater brain activity at the pleasure or reward center of the brain, the nucleus accumbens, in the participants who had consumed the milkshakes that caused high blood sugar.  This is the same area that lights up in persons with drug addiction or gambling addiction.

Sugar addiction does exist.  But the addiction isn’t just to sugar.  Anything that will elevate blood sugar (high glycemic index foods) does the same thing—white flour, white potatoes, refined starch.

“But I just love to eat sugar—that doesn’t mean I’m addicted.”  True.  Let’s define some terms.

Urge:  a strong need or desire to have or do something

Craving: a very strong desire for something; intense, urgent, abnormal desire or longing

Addiction: a strong and harmful need to regularly have something or do something; compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal

So…How Do I Know if I am Addicted to Sugar?

If you answer “Yes” to most of the following statements, you are probably addicted to sugar.

1.         I consume sweets, even if I am not hungry, because of cravings.

2.         I find myself constantly eating sweets throughout the day.

3.         I have an increased desire for sweets when I reduce or stop eating them.

4.         My sugar eating causes physical problems, and yet I keep eating it.

5.         When I eat more sugar, my emotions improve.

6.         When sweets are unavailable, I will go find some.

7.         I spend a lot of time feeling sluggish or fatigued from overeating.

8.         I can’t function at my best because of needing to eat sweets.

9.         I need to eat more and more sweets to get the same emotional help I got before.

10. After the first bite, I will binge and eat the whole sack of sweets.

11. (bonus) If I don’t eat sweets, I will be an emotional wreck.

If you are addicted, or feel your cravings are getting out of control, there is help.

We will soon be releasing a highly successful program, Sweet Freedom From Sugar.  It will walk you through the 5 steps to freedom from sugar addiction.  If you would like more details, place your name on the interest list and we will keep you informed as to its release date, probably in the next month.

Dr. Stan Gardner, a Certified Nutrition Specialist, is passionate about helping people reach their peak in health.  His office is in Sandy, UT, and he can be reached at 801.302.5397.  

sugar addiction

Fed Up: The Movie, and My Thoughts

Fed Up—Movie Review

Stan Gardner, MD, CNS

See Fed Up if you want:

  • to understand the true cause of obesity
  • your family to eat better food
  • to understand the power of the processed food industry
  • to realize the government cannot (will not) help you be healthy
  • to understand that health for you and your family must be your personal responsibility

Epidemic of Obesity

 In the US today, 1/3 of Americans are overweight and 1/3 are obese.  At the present rate, in 2 decades 95% of the population will be overweight or obese.  By 2050, 1/3 of the US will have diabetes mellitus, type II.  The next generation of children will be the first generation in the history of the United States that will live shorter than their parents.

 True Cause of ObesityIt’s All Preventable

 Sugar is the cause of obesity, not fat.  There are 600,000 food items in stores; 80% of them have added sugar.  When the NIH and the Senate Committee came up with the “Dietary Goals for the US” in the 1970s and 80s, saying that fat was bad, the food industry doubled the sugar and halved the fat in most foods.  (This supposedly made food healthier, although there was no scientific support for that.  Even after 5 very expensive studies trying to prove that fat was bad and caused obesity, it could not be proven.  But it remained the prevailing theory.)

 The processed food industry then targeted children in their marketing, and Ronald McDonald entered the scene.  More recent studies have shown that sugar stimulates the brain in the same manner as cocaine and heroin.  Laboratory rats preferred sugar water over cocaine when given a choice.  Sugar is addictive.

 How the Government Contributes to Obesity

 When the World Health Organization (WHO) was ready to release a document  of dietary guidelines restricting sugar intake to 10%, the Bush administration threatened to withdraw $405M support of WHO if the document was released.  It was not printed.

The government subsidizes the processed food industry to the tune of $Billions, much of it through subsidizing corn to make high-fructose corn syrup.  Decades ago when across the board cuts were made to all services, the school lunch program was also cut.  In an effort to stay solvent, schools set up partnerships with fast food establishments and soda pop distributors.  This also provided a source of revenue for the schools.

The Lies that Perpetuate the Obesity Epidemic

 Robert Lustig, MD and neuro-endocrinologist, maintains the food industry is perpetuating three falsehoods to distract Americans from the problem of sugar:

  • Obesity is the issue (the real issue is the metabolic illness associated with obesity, which also is seen in non-obese children.  While 17% of children are obese, more than 50% of children have the metabolic problems that are present in obese children.)
  • A calorie is a calorie.
  • It’s about personal responsibility.  “It’s about how active kids are.”  “Voracious appetites and they don’t exercise enough.”

An Attempt to Change It

Michelle Obama became quite the early advocate for healthy eating and significant changes in the processed food industry.  Then the food industry decided to partner with her in this endeavor.  One and one-half trillion calories were trimmed off foods.  Unfortunately, this only amounted to about 20 calories per day reduction per person.  Her Let’s Move It campaign shifted from moving or changing the food industry, to supplying more healthy food, to more exercise.  The wife of the President of the United States could not move the nation toward healthier food options.

The Junk Food/Processed Foods/Sugar Industries are Using the Same Techniques as the Tobacco Industry Used in the 1950s and 60s

Hundreds of millions of dollars were spent through campaign donations and extremely effective lobbyists to keep the status quo relative to tobacco.  In the 1950s and 1960s the tobacco industry emphasis was on their assertion that the science was uncertain.  The tobacco industry sponsored game shows and cartoons.  Endorsements were made by doctors, dentists and celebrities.  Finally when a 1991 study showed that 6 year olds recognized “Joe the Camel” as much as Mickey Mouse, R.J. Reynolds was told to remove it from their marketing.  (Does any of this sound like the sugar industry politics of today?)  In 2009 the RICO case found the tobacco industry guilty of engaging in a decades-long conspiracy to defraud the American public about the health risks of tobacco.  The future of the tobacco industry presently lies in off-shore production and marketing to developing countries.

 Solutions

 Dr. Mark Hyman was interviewed extensively on the documentary.  He proposes:

  • A 10-day sugar detox diet
  • Taxation on soda pop
  • Eliminate food marketing to kids
  • Make labels more transparent
  • Get rid of all junk food in schools

 Dr. Robert Lustig proposes the following solutions:

  • Warnings on soft drink cans
  • Equal time advertising fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Voluntary agreements to reduce sugar content

 Dr. Gardner’s comments:

 We must assume personal responsibility for our health.  It will start with a diet of real food and no sugar.  Although the WHO wants to limit sugar to 10% of the diet, there is no known minimum need for sugar or carbohydrates.  We will get all the carbohydrates we need through eating good food.

The school lunch only accounts for 180 of the 1095 meals (16%) your children will eat.  You may send lunch to school, or your child may choose healthier food (which is becoming more available), but even if your children eat school lunch, you still control the vast majority of their meals.

 Although the movie did not bring out exactly how and why sugar causes fat, it is an important concept.  If you were on a 2000 calorie diet and those calories were burned throughout the day, you would feel good because that is what your body needs.  If you eat 500 calories as sugar, the normal insulin response would drive those calories into the storage form called fat, because the body does not need that rapid infusion of glucose into the body.  The other 1500 calories would be normally burned throughout the day, but you don’t feel good because your body needs and utilizes 2000 calories.  You eat 500 more calories to feel good.  Thus you gain fat (and weight).

The movie Fed Up is an excellent resource for information about our health.  Its message will disturb you, but it is well worth watching, and it may transform YOUR health.  Bon appetit!

 If you would like to know more about Dr. Gardner’s philosophies, visit him at his website keystohealing.net.  His office number is (801) 302-5397.  He will soon be releasing his popular Sweet Freedom From Sugar program.  If you would like to be placed on the interest list so you will be informed of the starting date, visit sweetfreedomforme.com