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Junk food industry says anti-sugar studies is bad science – My response

Sugar is bad. We know this. With that said, I am very disappointed in a recent study published in a very prestigious journal Annals of Internal Medicine, stating the evidence opposing the consumption of sugar is based on “bad science”.

The facts
  • The study was funded by the ILSI (the International Life Sciences Institute), which has connections to big agriculture like Coca-Cola and Mars, Inc.
  • They tried to first state the authors conducted the research independently but instead ILSI confirmed they proposed the study and made revisions.
  • There was financial conflict of interest
  • Two of the authors are consultants for the British sugar company, Tate & Lyle
I can go on and on about how ridiculous this study was. In fact, I’m a bit shocked that Annals of Internal Medicine would approve and publish this article. Dr. Marion Nestle of NYU does an excellent break-down exposing this publication, and there is an editorial that basically rips this publication apart. Rightfully so.

We know sugar is bad. From a medical, biophysiological, functional perspective, there really is no reason why we should be eating sugar unless, of course, the amount we find naturally in foods; when I say foods, I mean real food, the stuff in the perimeter of the supermarket not fruit-flavored gummies.

I know enough to know the effects of sugar on the body. I have a ton of studies connecting high insulin, high sugar, high carbohydrate foods to chronic illness. This is not news. This is evidence-based science.

In August we found out the sugar industry was behind the funding stating fat was the culprit of heart disease and chronic illness. Fat shaming. So this is their comeback. I disapprove.

What worries me is when the media takes this ‘prestigious’ article and states it as fact. It worries me that the less informed, the less aware (including Physicians) may possibly believe this nonsense article.

This article is bad science. As the editorial response says, “when confronted with claims that sugar guidelines are based on “junk science,” should consider whether “junk food” was the source.”

References:
  1. Jennifer Erickson, Behnam Sadeghirad, Lyubov Lytvyn, Joanne Slavin, Bradley C. Johnston. The Scientific Basis of Guideline Recommendations on Sugar Intake. Annals of Internal Medicine, 2016; DOI: 10.7326/M16-2020
  2. Schillinger D, Kearns C. Guidelines to Limit Added Sugar Intake: Junk Science or Junk Food?. Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 20 December 2016] doi: 10.7326/M16-2754
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