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  #1   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 20:20
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Rosebud Rosebud is offline
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Red face Quitting sugar to improve your health not the answer

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-...r-teeth/9517686

Quitting sugar to improve your health not the answer
By Tara Leong

Not long ago, fat was the evil dietary villain. Before that it was salt. Now the sugar-free diet has exploded onto the health and wellness scene ó and seems to have topped many people's list of New Year's resolutions.

Sugar-free diets encourage people to avoid table sugar (sucrose), sweeteners such as honey and maple syrup, refined flours, condiments, soft drinks, sweets and some fruits such as bananas. Some also recommend eliminating or restricting dairy products.

The diet's advocates rightly note that excessive sugar consumption may lead to obesity and therefore increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers.

And it's true that Australians are eating too much of the sweet stuff, with 35 per cent of an adult's total daily calories now coming from "discretionary foods", which includes lollies, chocolates and soft drinks.

But you don't need to quit sugar to lift your game on healthy eating. Quitting sugar is unlikely to improve your health any more than cutting down on ultra-processed foods, eating more vegetables, cooking food from scratch and limiting how much extra sugar you eat and drink.

At best, the sugar-free diet is confusing and imposes an arbitrary set of rules that aren't based on scientific evidence. At worst, such a restrictive diet can create food fear or an unhealthy relationship with food.

The sugar-free diet is restrictive, with lists of "allowed" foods (such as whole grains, blueberries and grapefruits) and "not allowed" foods (such as white bread, bananas and raisins). This inadvertently promotes a diet mentality and causes followers to worry about accidentally eating something that's not allowed.

People who worry about food are more likely to diet. This may be because they are worried specifically about their weight, or about the impact certain nutrients have on their health.

Research shows dieting is not effective over the long term and can lead to greater weight gain over time.

The brain interprets dieting and restriction as a famine, which causes the storage of fat for future shortages.

Dieting is stressful. In response to this, our body releases stress hormones such as cortisol, which may cause the body to store fat, particularly in the abdominal area.

Worrying about food can lead to stress, anxiety and depression, and is one of the defining features of the condition known as orthorexia.

Orthorexia is the overwhelming preoccupation with eating healthily. People with orthorexia spend a lot of time thinking and worrying about food and eliminating foods that are deemed impure or unhealthy. Some experts suggest this behaviour is a precursor to, or a form of, an eating disorder.

Estimates suggest anywhere between 7 per cent and 58 per cent of the population may have the condition.

There are no clear diagnostic criteria, which makes it difficult to measure its prevalence.

But we know 15 per cent of women will experience an eating disorder at some stage in their life. So we need to ensure nutrition advice, however well-intentioned, doesn't promote or encourage disordered eating.

Some sugar-free diets advise people to cut out or restrict healthy foods and food groups such as fruit and dairy, without evidence to support their exclusion. This perpetuates the food fear/dietary restriction cycle and may contribute to nutrient deficiencies.

These diets also recommend people avoid fruit for a period of time, and then re-introduce a limited list of expensive "healthy" fruits (such as berries) while avoiding the cheaper "unhealthy" fruits such as bananas.

Whole fruit is a wonderful source of fibre, essential vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidants. Two serves of fruit per day can reduce the risk of developing some cancers, type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Given only half of Australians eat the recommended two serves of fruit per day, the advice to restrict fruit further could result in people missing out on these benefits.

Many sugar-free followers also avoid plain dairy products such as milk, yoghurt and cheese, due to the assumption these contain sugars.

The sugar in plain dairy products is the natural lactose (a carbohydrate), which is nothing to fear.

Unnecessarily avoiding dairy may increase the risk of osteoporosis if not replaced with adequate levels of calcium from other sources.

Sugar replacements

Strangely, many of the sugar-free recipes use expensive sugar alternatives ó such as rice malt syrup (due to its low fructose content), maple syrup (which is sometimes allowed and sometimes not) and dates ó to replace sugar.

However, these are still sugars and contain the same number of calories per gram as any other sugar. These alternatives offer no additional nutritional benefits other than rice malt syrup, which is a useful option only for those with a fructose malabsorption issue, and dates, which contain fibre.

People often eat more of the food containing these alternatives under the guise of it being sugar-free, which could lead to unintentional weight gain.

One study found people ate about 35 per cent more of a snack when it was perceived as healthy than when it was seen as unhealthy.
What to do instead

Eat plenty of plants, enjoy whole grains, beans and legumes. Fruit is your friend ó not your enemy.

Most people could probably eat a little less sugar, a little less often, but you don't have to quit it for good to be healthy.

Savour every mouthful of that chocolate cake or "sometimes food". Turn off technology and eat the cake mindfully, so that your brain can register that you have eaten it. That way you can get pleasure and satisfaction from it, and you won't be craving it again an hour later.

No matter how we choose to eat, remember that health is not simply about the number on the scale, the size of our waist, or the foods we avoid.

It's also about our psychological health and our relationship with food, which is just as important as our physical health.

Tara Leong is a lecturer in nutrition and dietetics at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
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  #2   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 20:21
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Rosebud Rosebud is offline
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Sigh...

Sometimes I'm embarrassed to be Australian and I HATE that!
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  #3   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 21:03
Zei Zei is offline
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The author of this article must be very fortunately free of any significant metabolic disorders to be able to eat as she describes and not experience health consequences like type 2 diabetes and significant weight gain as I would if I thought lots of fruit, whole grains, legumes and that savored chocolate cake were my friends. And yes I would be craving more cake in an hour because my insulin would be through the roof, putting my blood glucose into the basement. It would be good for these dietitians to be aware that not everyone is metabolically healthy enough to be able to handle large amounts of carbohydrate so they could tailor advice to each individual's needs.
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  #4   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 22:07
Grav Grav is offline
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I only got about as far as the seventh paragraph before I gave up.

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  #5   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 22:11
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GRB5111 GRB5111 is online now
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Interesting person, Roz, this Tara Leong. We don't hold you responsible

Here's a sample of her views:

http://thenutritionpress.com/interview-with-tara-leong/

Quote:
What advice would you give to students in the field of Nutrition?
You need to work very hard. You need to know your chemistry and physiology and all of those science subjects because they form the basis of your knowledge, but you also need to know about food and cooking. There is no use knowing your biochemistry if you donít which muesli bars are gluten free at the supermarket. Because when you graduate people wonít be asking you to recite the Krebbs cycle or draw a diagram of the digestion of protein. They will be asking you which is the healthiest yoghurt to buy. You also need to know how to cook, not fancy-pants cooking but just the basics because one day you will need to be telling an overweight lady with Type 2 Diabetes how to reduce her calorie and fat intake in order to lose the weight needed. If you canít tell her how to modify her meals at home, then youíre only giving her half the advice and she wonít have the knowledge to go and put your recommendations into practice.

Yep, that puts everything into perspective. One step forward, two steps back.
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  #6   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 23:40
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Rosebud Rosebud is offline
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Plan: Atkins
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Yeah, gotta modify that fat 'n calorie intake.

Someone explain to me again how I lost all that weight and am keeping it off on a high fat, who cares about the calories, diet?

Thanks for not holding it against me that I live in a land of some time ignorance, Rob.

And Zei, I reckon she must be pretty young. Sooner or later those healthywholegrains, let alone the ch*****te cake will do her in.

Grav, trust me mate, you shoulda left after the second paragraph, not the seventh.
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  #7   ^
Old Mon, Mar-05-18, 23:46
M Levac M Levac is offline
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Jebus, where to begin. Orthorexia isn't an accepted disorder yet. The focus of the article seems to be "quit sugar", and a sugar-free diet I don't know about. I know of a few diets that can contain no sugar, but I never called them sugar-free diets. Instead, I call them by their actual names, like the Atkins diet, an all-meat diet or zero-carb, and pretty much any other diet we can think of on this forum can be sugar-free.

Sugar-free doesn't necessarily mean dieting or semi-starvation to be precise. I don't know of any experiment like that so I can't agree that it would necessarily follow the same trend as any other diet experiment, i.e. long term success or failure. I mean, maybe subjects would add back some sugar to a point, but I doubt sugar on its own would be solely responsible for the effect either way. On the other hand, I equally doubt sugar would not be responsible for any effect whatsoever.
Quote:
Two serves of fruit per day can reduce the risk of developing some cancers, type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Where the hell did the writer pull out that quote from, huh? Wasn't sure if I should be polite, but with this quote, that's it for that, I know exactly how polite I should be.

OK, no more quotes or arguments. Ain't gonna say any more except there is no merit to the article, i.e. you shouldn't quit sugar, because there is equally no merit to the opposite, i.e. you should eat sugar.

-edit- (I lied. Got more to say after all.)

As a side note, fairly recently I've noticed the use of the term "ultra-processed food", as if it was a new food group or something. In the article, the writer writes "Quitting sugar is unlikely to improve your health any more than cutting down on ultra-processed foods..." Dunno 'bout you guys, but in my mind, if there's anything that would fit the definition of ultra-processed food (whatever that definition is, still not sure, brand new term, you see), sugar is #1. So, anyways, the writer is saying that eating no ultra-processed foods is unlikely to improve your health any more that merely eating less of it. Ya, not smashing my thumb with a hammer is unlikely to help any more than smashing my thumb only a little bit once in a while.

Is the writer actually paid to write this crap? Is this a real job?
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  #8   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 04:57
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Karhys Karhys is offline
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This is the most waffly, bullcrap nonsense article I've read on this topic in ages.

Honestly, to me it just sounds like yet another veiled stab at Sarah Wilson. (Especially with the mention of rice malt syrup.) Australian media just loooooves to shit on her when they're not too busy shitting on Pete Evans.

I am also embarrassed to be an Aussie. ;P
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  #9   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 05:17
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cotonpal cotonpal is offline
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Quote:
Savour every mouthful of that chocolate cake or "sometimes food". Turn off technology and eat the cake mindfully, so that your brain can register that you have eaten it. That way you can get pleasure and satisfaction from it, and you won't be craving it again an hour later.


This is so silly and so ignorant and so wrong!

Jean
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  #10   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 06:21
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Ambulo Ambulo is online now
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This is such an ignorant, opinionated outpouring of bullocks I am ashamed to be female.
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  #11   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 07:52
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GRB5111 GRB5111 is online now
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Plan: Ketogenic (LCHFKD)
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Unfortunately, Australia hardly has a monopoly on this type of thinking. It's pervasive and misinformation of this type appears in too many countries, supported by too many governments and health authorities.
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  #12   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 08:09
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Calianna Calianna is offline
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I decided early on that she didn't know what she was talking about, but got nearly to the end (never did quite finish reading it) before I noticed that nearly every other line was contradictory to the one before it.



- Cutting out sugar means also avoiding starches, but means you should eat whole grains (which are about 90% starch).

- Cutting out sugar is a diet, and a diet is interpreted by the body as famine, leading to stress, and eating disorders... so she's advocating a diet that restricts calories and fat, because apparently actually inducing a famine state through cutting calories and fat isn't interpreted by the body as famine, and causes no stress.

- Aussies only average 2 servings of fruit a day, so don't reduce it even more by cutting out fruit. When you eat fruit, it's bad to eat expensive berries, while cutting out cheap bananas. It's good to eat concentrated fruit (raisins) that doesn't fill you up, but bad to eat blueberries.

She obviously has no clue about how LC works, that there's a difference between LC in general, Atkins, Protein Power, Paleo... as well as no clue about how sugars and starches of ALL KINDS affect blood sugar and lead to diabetes. The list just goes on and on. So glad she's not wasting her time concentrating on how the Krebbs cycle works, because it's much more important to explain to a diabetic how to reduce fats and calories to (white knuckle her way through) sufficient weight loss, while still savoring her piece of chocolate cake.

And Rose - I certainly don't hold it against you that this came from an Aussie. This kind of stupidity is rampant everywhere that "nutrition" is officially taught.

The store where I work has hired an in-store nutritionist, and she waffles just as much about this kind of thing.

It was right before thanksgiving when they had a huge cake, and a bunch of pizzas in the break room for employees. One of my coworkers asked her what she thought of all that, and her reply (with a shrug and huge smile) was "Moderation in all things. I figure we're all going to be eating a lot of lean protein for the next few days, so it all works out". Lean protein of course was referring to leftover turkey from thanksgiving - never mind that the vast majority of the traditional Thanksgiving meal (and therefore most of the leftovers) will be nothing but carbs - mashed potatoes, thickened gravy, bread stuffing, sweet potato casserole (with brown sugar and/or marshmallows *gag*), cranberry sauce, green bean casserole (probably the least carby traditional side dish on the table, at only 12 g carbs/half cup serving), rolls, and pumpkin pie. Some families have even more carby traditional dishes with their thanksgiving meal, and many run out of the lean breast meat from the turkey on Thanksgiving day. So much for several days of lean protein - more like several days of nothing but leftover carbs.

I'm pretty sure she's in charge of choosing the free snacks provided in the break room too (a new feature since her hire), because they're so "healthy" - there's usually a variety of granola bars available, bananas, and sometimes some mandarin oranges. But in the spirit of "moderation in all things", sometimes there are boxes of donuts or containers of cookies too.
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  #13   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 08:17
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teaser teaser is online now
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Quote:
Orthorexia is the overwhelming preoccupation with eating healthily. People with orthorexia spend a lot of time thinking and worrying about food and eliminating foods that are deemed impure or unhealthy. Some experts suggest this behaviour is a precursor to, or a form of, an eating disorder.

Estimates suggest anywhere between 7 per cent and 58 per cent of the population may have the condition.

There are no clear diagnostic criteria, which makes it difficult to measure its prevalence.

But we know 15 per cent of women will experience an eating disorder at some stage in their life. So we need to ensure nutrition advice, however well-intentioned, doesn't promote or encourage disordered eating.


A condition with no clear diagnostic criteria might very well turn out to be universal. The criteria are loose enough that she can accuse anybody who advocates any sort of restrictions that she doesn't share of being othorexic.

How many of those 15 percent of women's eating disorders involve sugar, through binges or some other way?
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  #14   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 10:19
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WereBear WereBear is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosebud
Thanks for not holding it against me that I live in a land of some time ignorance, Rob.


I live in the United States and cannot make fun of anyone these days.
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  #15   ^
Old Tue, Mar-06-18, 18:07
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mike_d mike_d is offline
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Because, "you're cutting out a whole food group!"
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