Monday, February 28, 2011

Soda as the primary cause of obesity in America?

I was shocked to read this morning in Dr. Mercola's newsletter that,

"Researchers studied the reported diets of a large nationwide sample of American adults. Among respondents of the 1999-2000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES):
-  More than two-thirds reported drinking enough soda or sweet drinks to supply them with a greater proportion of daily calories than any other food.
-  Those who consumed sweet drinks had higher obesity rates."
I know I have family members who drink soda and who struggle with their weight.  I imagine most of us do, if these numbers are to be believed.  If this research is true (and the American Dietetics Association also did a study that came to the same conclusions), maybe this is THE primary cause of obesity.  Could losing weight be as simple as cutting out soda?  
Note that diet soda may be even worse because, as a Harvard study found 35 years ago (I read the study when I was still in college), diet sodas trigger the release of insulin but there is no sugar that needs to be shoved into cells, and so the blood sugar plummets.  And the sugars get put into adipose tissue because there is nothing to trigger the Glut4 receptors which tell the glucose to go to the muscles instead of being stored as fat.
Even eating a lot of fruit (fructose) can cause you to store fat rather than feed your muscles.  Oh, dear, this is truly a much longer story.  I'll have to get back to you in another post.  Let's consider this the tip of the iceberg, just enough to get you interested in doing your own research.

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