Wednesday, February 18, 2015

WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS: Fifty Shades of Sugar

“No child deserves to be obese.”                                                                        
                 -- Dr. Robert Lustig, from Sugar: The Bitter Truth (YouTube)

If you haven’t seen Sugar:  The Bitter Truth, the 90 minute video by University of California pediatric endocrinologist Dr. Robert Lustig, then watch it today.  For a link to Dr. Lustig's video on YouTube, look no further.   In yesterday's issue of The Telegraph, there was a fascinating article about Dr. John Yudkin (now deceased) and his profound warnings about the health consequences of processed sugar.  To read the article  about Dr. Yudkin and to watch Dr. Lustig's video, click here.

Several weeks ago, I gave an update on Growing Healthy Kids' Farm to Fork nutrition education program to about 80 members of Rotary Club of Vero Beach Sunrise (yes it was a very early morning meeting).  I shared the key points children learn in the program, one of which is to eat more of the good foods (veggies) and less of the bad foods (foods and drinks containing added sugars).  Afterwards, an elegant, beautifully dressed woman came up to me.  She agreed with everything I said in my talk and then quietly told me, “I have just lost 30 pounds by cutting out sugars.  I have never felt better in my life.”  

While writing my book, Nourish and Flourish (available at, I made the decision to include a list of the many names of sugar (over 50), hence the title of this week’s WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS article (and you thought this might be about sex, didn’t you?)  Many parents find it hard to believe that sugar can be disguised so many ways.  Yet, when kids eat a lot sugar by whatever name, especially if they are eating and drinking high fructose corn syrup daily, their bodies – and minds – are being overwhelmed and damaged.  Sugar is a trigger to a cascade of dangerous diseases.  A little sugar is OK.  Consuming 19 teaspoons at a time (the amount in one strawberry melon Brisk drink made by Lipton) is not OK.  The food industry has blindfolded us and tricked us in submission.

The fact is that sugar is highly addictive.  For children under the age of 18 who are consuming copious amounts of it, sugar is a poison to their bodies and minds.  

As parents, we owe it to our children to be the best role models we can be for them.   Start looking out for the added sugars in your own foods and drinks.   Become a nutrition detective.  Take the first step and do not buy anything containing high fructose corn syrup.  And don’t forget to watch Sugar:  The Bitter Truth. 

With love and gratitude,
Nancy Heinrich

Founder of the Growing Healthy Kids Project

PS-Don't miss an issue of WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS!  Just enter your email address where it says "follow by email", click "submit" and every issue of WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS will automatically be delivered to your inbox!  Easy!