43 cocaine-addicted laboratory rats were given the choice of cocaine or sugar water over a 15-day period: 93 percent, or 40 out of 43, chose sugar.
in 2004, the World Health Organization (WHO) released a document called "TRS 916," acknowledging that less than 10% of your daily calories should come from added sugar. They say "less than" because many scientists believe 0% added sugar is necessary. Our bodies produce enough glucose from starch and carbohydrates received elsewhere.
The WHO suggestion is as follows:
Pictured here is a label for brown sugar, but do you notice anything strange? There is no % Daily Value listed for sugar. Shouldn't there be?
You may or may not have imagined, but the sugar industry went crazy when the WHO published this study. Tommy Thompson, then Secretary of Health and Human Services, flew to Geneva to tell the WHO that the US Government would withhold $406,000,000 in funding if the report were published. Extortion at the government level.
Now, the US Institute of Medicine issues that up to 25% of your daily calories can come from added sugar. 2.5x more than the WHO reccomendation.
For the record:
1 gram of sugar will burn for about 4 calories. As an average daily diet is based on a consumption of 2000 calories, it would factor that you should be consuming 0-50g of added sugar a day according to the WHO study.
The health dangers from excess sugar are fairly well known. Heart disease, chronic pain, obesity, and the list goes on; but the addictiveness is under-addressed. Maybe it's because those of us that have had sugar in the last three days don't want to believe we are addicted. Maybe we enjoy the rush; I, personally, think that drugs of all kinds used strategically can benefit your life. Making it illegal is probably not the way to deal with it, but treating it as an addictive substance will get us further towards health. Like the tobacco giants of the 50s selling their products to children, sugary food commercials and cartoons aimed at children are on their way out. Regulation exists for a reason.
Below is a clip from a brilliant documentary called "Fed Up," which highlights the dangers of the sugar industry in today's culture.