In the evolution of humankind, diet refined sugar is probably the last introduced source of calories.
It comes mainly from sugar cane grown in tropical and sub-tropical countries which reached Europe from the East as early as AD 636 and from beetroot where extraction developed in the early 1800’s, in temperated areas.
Refined sugar was then a luxury item sold in pharmacies. It was consumed in moderation; less than 1kg per year. Today an average person will consume about 40kg per annum. Sugar has become a giant in the global food market aided by advertising and a new culture. Why?
Sweetness and taste buds are not the only elements responsible for this addiction. Our parents have used sugar in the education process as a persuasive tool and a reward, even calling their loved ones sweetie or honey. In French sweeties are called bonbon which means ‘goodgood’.
This phenomenon is recent. For today’s elderly population, Coca-Cola is associated with a birthday party or a sea holiday resort – rare occasions.
Today, a normal shopping trolley will contain a few bottles of cold drink, ice cream, sugar, chocolate, cakes and other sweets, processed food. 80% of which is filled with sugar as an ingredient.
When sugar and carbohydrates are digested, specific enzymes split them a nd the result yields two molecules, glucose and fructose.
Glucose is essential for life. It runs in our blood at a constant level which is strictly maintained by hormones. Glucose is the source of energy for our cells and even with no refined sugar intake, it will be metabolised from glycogene, an unlimited source of sugar embedded in our muscles and our liver.
This is why sugar is so bad for our health. Our cells will use it instead of Glycogene and fat will accumulate causing obesity, cancer, cardio-vascular disease, dental cavities, diabetes and mental disorders. For people suffering from chronic infections, this source of energy boosts the germ division and secondarily weakens the immune response.
Any food package containing refined sugar should have a warning label like a cigarette box. What about Coca-Cole, Fanta etc and other multi-national suppliers?
There is certainly something else to do with sugar cane and sugarbeet. Brazil knows it. Over the last 30 years they have managed to produce 80% of their fuel needs based on ethanol sugar cane, from their plantations.
In the future, we might fill our vehicles with Coke at the bio-fuel station, leaving less sugar on the shelves.