Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Sugar Needs to be Regulated Like a Drug?

Does anyone remember that scene in the Exorcist where Father Merrin tells Father that the demon in Reagan was a liar but would also blend lies with the truth. That's a rare detail from a movie that's also too true in real life. The best lies have a few elements of truth to them. The lie serves to make the truth appear to be something that it's not, like When Reagan started talking like Father Karras' dead mother in order to make him break.
Such as it is with the latest pack of manipulative, power-hungry and wanna-be policy making doctors out of San Francisco who starting the latest charge against sugar in the American Diet. The 60 Minutes Clip all about this is showing up frequently on fellow blogger's web sites. In case you missed it, here it is:

I wouldn't even begin to disagree that the amount of sugar in most people's diet is as appalling as it is dangerous. Where I start to get pissed off and call bullshit is the notion that sugar affects the brain much like cocaine does. Since it acts on the brain the same as cocaine, it should therefore be regulated like a drug. This is the lie blended with the truth.

The whole purpose of the sensation of pleasure in the brain is a measuring stick so that the brain can determine the necessity of whatever it's ingesting, sensing or experiencing. Dopamine release is measured by the brain and then based on the level of release, the brain figures out how much it needs what just triggered the release. Since every cell in the body needs sugar to function, it triggers quite a dopamine release in the brain. Makes sense, right?

We don't need cocaine, or any other drug for that matter, to survive. The problem is that all recreational drugs are fooling our brains by triggering huge releases of dopamine. Cocaine actually goes one farther. The brain normally re-absorbs dopamine. Cocaine delays that up-take, therefore increasing the sense of need in the brain. So, it's incorrect to say that sugar behaves like cocaine. It's more accurate to say that cocaine is imitating sugar (and definetly doing it TOO well!).

So, now that you realize that they're heavily distorting the truth, the question is why? Why would they distort a comparison between sugar (which we need, just not in the quantities and level of refinement that' we're getting) and quite possibly natures most perfect recreational drug? The simple answer would be that they want control. You make up and debate amongst yourselves what they want to do with that kind of regulatory power but the fact remains that they're using blow because it's as illegal as a drug gets. The government has gone to insane lengths to control it with marginal opposition from most decent people. Likening sugar to cocaine sounds like a good way to make people not question the regulation.

That, to me, is a powerful statement about what's going on here. What's also laughable about it is that this is the same medical establishment that has been horribly inadequate in determining what people shouldn't be eating to begin with. They do expensive and extensive studies on the effects of refined sugar to find out something that their ancient Nemesis Bernarr MacFadden told people back in the 1910's. He certainly didn't need to put a human in an MRI and feed them soda to prove that high fructose corn syrup royally sucks! They just weren't paying attention because they fucking hated MacFadden's guts!I think that MaFadden is in his 50's in this picture.
The simple fact is that they've based the medical practice in the USA almost solely on being reactive than proactive. It's not hard to find a doctor who can't even tell you what cholestrol does for the body but can prescribe a host of drugs to bring it down.

Ultimately, I think that half-truths make for half-ass results. Going around distorting the truth about sugar won't amount to people reducing their intakes. Most of us know that cocaine and sugar aren't related to one another because they release lots of dopamine any more than a Prius and a Hummer can both be called similar cars because they burn gasoline. This kind of half-baked thinking just cheapens the argument. Yes, the 1/3 lbs-sugar-per-day habit has got to stop but inviting in the same crooks who helped create the problem in the first place and expecting them to solve it isn't a sound strategy.