Dessert is canceled - Indefinitely!
I know I’ve written about my sweet tooth before, and it’s still true: I love sweets! But as many of you know, too much of a good thing is not so good. As parents, we are not only tasked with getting our own diets right, but getting the diets of our little ones right, too. That AND teaching them good skills about diet choices. It’s an uphill battle all the way. Given the choice, I know my boys would have sugary meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner! But someone just rained on my sugar-high happy parade, and that someone is named Dr Robert Lustig.
Dr Lustig has collected a mass of evidence that says not only is too much sugar not a good thing, it’s more than likely toxic. As in: containing or being poisonous material especially when capable of causing death or serious debilitation (according to Merriam Webster). You’ve heard many people talk about the obesity epidemic, and how type II diabetes is becoming more and more prevalent over the last half a century. Dr Lustig steps this up a notch by using his pediatric and endocrinology background to make a case that sugar (or more specifically, fructose) is not only guilty of causing obesity and diabetes, but that it also can be blamed for the increase in heart disease, hypertension and potentially cancer. If you have a minute or 90 to spare, you can listen to his talk about the matter on youtube. That might make you think twice about the extra cookie after lunch, right?
Or, will it? I have heard lots of friends and mamas talk about going “sugar free”. They say the first few days are the hardest, and then they feel much better afterwards. But what’s in the ever after? Still consuming agave syrup and honey and maple syrup? Those all contain high levels of fructose, which is the evil half of sugar, Lustig posits. So how do you deal with cravings for sweet? As Dr Lustig says “when God made the poison, he packaged it with the antidote.” Using sugar cane as an example (It’s a Stick!), sugar comes with fiber. Beets? Apples? Carrots? Full of lovely sweetness AND fiber. So he says eat the whole fruit... and then you get the micronutrients, too. Sounds great, in theory. But what about when the holidays roll around? Easter? Halloween? How do you pass up the opportunity of a yummy cookie from Grand Central? Is going “off sugar” really possible? For me, I think I couldn’t do it. For now, I will stick to my policy of moderation. So maybe dessert isn’t canceled after all. But maybe it will be less frequent...