Immediate action is needed to address this problem on a societal level. The time for blaming the victim, for putting the entire responsibility of the obesity epidemic on a gluttonous population is over. The science is clear, and we have the means to save lives and millions in health care dollars
New York, New York (PRWEB) March 6, 2006
There is no debate…at least there shouldn’t be. "The debate on whether sodas contribute to the obesity epidemic is a distraction from the obvious and undeniable facts – sodas and the high fructose corn syrup they contain are linked in every way to obesity,” says Mark Hyman, MD, one of the country’s leading medical practitioners in the new fields of functional medicine and nutrigenomics – the science of how foods like sodas "talk” to our genes and send instructions to our bodies of weight gain and disease.
Dr. Hyman, author of UltraMetabolism: The Simple Plan for Automatic Weight Loss, (Scriber, March 2006) continues, "Studies from leading researchers at Harvard and Yale irrefutably draw the connection between sodas and obesity through large population studies and through clinical research trials proving that liquid calories from sodas pile up the pounds.
"In fact, the only research refuting this notion is funded by the beverage industry.
"Here are the facts:
- Sodas make up one in five calories consumed by teenagers;
- Since 1997, soda consumption has increased from 23 gallons a year to 54 gallons a year;
- Since the 1970s, there have been major changes in our agricultural policy, namely the subsidization of corn production and farming, which led to an overproduction of corn, and an extra 500 calories available every day for every person in America, mostly in the form of high fructose corn syrup;
- High fructose corn syrup wasn’t even in our food supply before the 1970s; and
- The use of high fructose corn syrup, one of the primary sweeteners used in sodas, has skyrocketed by more than 1,000% since 1970.
"Here’s where the problem lies: The body’s normal mechanisms for controlling how fat we get when we consume regular sugar—primarily the hormones insulin and leptin—are NOT activated when we consume high fructose corn syrup. As a consequence, when we consume sodas, which include large doses of high fructose corn syrup, we find that our appetite actually increases and those calories from the soda are turned directly into fat.
"As I note in UltraMetabolism, high fructose corn syrup is a super sugar that actually triggers chemical changes in our bodies that tell our brains to eat more and our fat cells to store more fat.
"In fact, studies show that even pregnant women who consume sodas and have poor quality diets influence the fetus, leading to poor metabolism, appetite controls and obesity in their children.
"The government and the food industry are not being held to account for the frightening effects of the soda, fast food and junk food washing over our genes and promoting obesity and disease.
"We have enough information to solve this problem and we must solve it. For the first time in a century, American children can expect shorter life spans than their parents. Swift and strong initiatives are needed:
- Taxes on fast food and junk food to pay for school and community programs to reduce obesity;
- Bans on the $13 billion in junk food and soft drink marketing to children as in Sweden and Canada; and
- Government farm subsidies for whole foods, fruits and vegetables, and calorie labels on fast foods.
"The time for debate on whether sodas, junk food and fast food contribute to obesity is over.
"The facts are clear.
"Immediate action is needed to address this problem on a societal level. The time for blaming the victim, for putting the entire responsibility of the obesity epidemic on a gluttonous population is over. The science is clear, and we have the means to save lives and millions in health care dollars,” says Dr. Hyman.
In his new book, UltraMetabolism – The Simple Plan for Automatic Weight Loss, Dr. Hyman dispels the myth that government and food industry policies protect us and demonstrates precisely how the body’s metabolism is crippled by the consumption of high fructose corn syrup in sodas.
A sneak preview of the book is available to download by going to: