Sweets & scales

It’s Weigh In day! And we’ve been at this for just over a month. How’ve you been? Did you join the challenge, miss a few weeks and give up? Are your snacks sabotaging your diet? Even if you haven’t been very successful, rejoin the challenge. So what if you haven’t lost any weight. It’s not too late. We’ve still got two more months to go and if you start now, you could still lose a good amount of weight before the first day of summer. So, hop on the scale and send me an update at WeighIn@Captivate.com. For those of you who’ve joined, but haven’t been sending me updates … I know where you live! OK. I don’t really. But, I know your email address! So I might just have to start the virtual nagging.

Sweet evils
I don’t just have a sweet tooth. I’ve got a whole set of sweet teeth.
When I was in high school my favorite breakfast was two Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop-Tarts (sugar) washed down with a Sprite (more sugar). Not Sprite Zero. Regular ol’ Sprite. For a total of 670 calories! (And I wonder why I was not-so-pleasantly plump!).

I think it’s pretty obvious that sugar makes you fat. (I wish those smart NASA people would quit those silly plans to return to the moon and start working on important things … like a sugar that makes you skinny!). But a new study from Princeton University suggests high-fructose corn syrup makes you gain more weight than table sugar.

Researchers fed rats water sweetened with high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) for six months. They found the rats on a HFCS diet developed more belly fat and had an increased level of circulating triglycerides, fat's chemical form in the body.

That’s not to say you should you should douse your salad in sugar, it just means natural sugar is a better option over high-fructose corn syrup.

"The debate about which one is better for you is a false debate, because neither of them is good for you," says Elizabeth Abbott, author of the forthcoming "Sugar: A Bittersweet History." "By having cane sugar, you're not doing yourself a great big favor. Not so much sugar is what we should be striving for."

Corn conspiracy
Some experts are debating the merits of this controversial study. Marion Nestle, author of Food Politics, points out researchers did only two experiments comparing the effects of HFCS to sugar, and the results were inconsistent. Their other experiments compared HFCS to a regular diet.

Either way you look at it, sugar is evil. Whether it’s table sugar, HFCS, or maple syrup. They can all make you fat and increase your risk of heart disease.

Americans eat an average of 21.4 teaspoons (359 calories) of added sugars each day. And govt scientists say about 1/3 of that sugar comes from soda. Imagine if you cut out one serving of soda a day (keep in mind that’s 8 ounces … not the 20 oz. bottles you buy). You could lose 1 pound a month – 12 pounds a year. Just by giving soda the cold shoulder.

So what’s your dessert downfall? What rots your sweet tooth?

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“Sweets & scales”