Sugar is ‘the new tobacco’

Being a natural optimist, I feel encouraged and as we enter 2014, by an apparent growing swell of anti-sugar campaigns and positive newspaper reporting.

Surprisingly, Philip Clarke, the CEO at Tesco has asked government for stronger legislation to restrict the amount of sugars that are systematically pumped into our food.

Regrettable the response from the Health Secretary was rather limp, who (as reported in the Times) when confronted with the state of the nations health, suggested that the solution is that individuals should engage in national soul-searching and take more responsibility for their own diet.

In other words government is washing it hands of it for fear of upsetting the large food producers and supermarkets – its not unlike the response of government to the tobacco industry a generation or so ago.  Sugar is ‘the new tobacco’ is the headline in the Daily Mail as doctors and academics tell food giants to slash levels by 30%

Surely it wont be long before we, as a nation, use common sense and stand firm against food producers and weak legislation that encourages to compromise our food chain.  We have too much processed food and takeaways which are energy – dense , nutrient-poor foods, high in saturated fat, salt and sugars and which is mainly targeted at the most vulnerable members of our society – our children and the economically deprived.

Action on Sugar, a new campaigning group of doctors, launched this week to stem the obesity epidemic says that better labelling and more action by the food industry is urgently needed to reduce our consumption of sugar

Needless to say, sugar manufacturers defended their products stating that a World Health Organisation review last year, was not specifically blaming sugar for the rise in obesity.  It’s a bit like saying the cause for cancer cannot be specific to tobacco.  No, but it is definitely a huge contributing factor!