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Organizing Your Food: Sugar, Addiction & Weight Loss

So many of you shared comments about sugar, weight loss and how you organize your food intake for a healthy diet, that I thought I would share some of my food / weight loss organizing tips.  And do a little research on the subject of sugar; the good, the bad and the ugly.

Can sugar / food be addictive?  Research from The National Center for Biotechnology Information says that “Food addiction” is plausible; especially sugar or foods that contain high levels of sugar because they affect our brains – namely our opoid and dopamine receptors. (Components of addiction are analyzed as bingeing, withdrawal, craving and cross-sensitization.)

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) also seemed to be high of your list of “no-no’s!” You’re probably not surprised that most Americans consume massive quantities of it – not only in juice boxes, sodas, syrups, and fast food pies – also in most fast food sauces / salad dressings, many breads, potato salads and most types of processed ice creams.  (Here’s a list of HFCS free foods by Brand.)

Some of you even pointed out the “hidden” lactose / sugar in milk and other dairy products. However, it is important to note that lactose is a naturally occurring sugar and milk is a very good source of calcium, which if eliminated from our diets should be substituted with other healthy choices.  

However, the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee suggests the biggest contributors to the increase in calories in our diet come from SoFAS (Solid Fats and Added Sugars).

Solid fats are unhealthy fats such as saturated fat and transfat.  Added sugars come from an ever-expanding variety of sources such as high fructose corn syrup and sucrose. These solid fats add “empty calories” in our diet but offer minimal nutritional value.

Calories from SoFAS should be limited to between 5 and 15 percent of total caloric intake.

The top five contributors to added sugars in our food supply are:
1. Sugar-sweetened soda
2. Grain-based desserts and snacks
3. Fruit drinks
4. Dairy-based desserts
5. Candy

The top five contributors to unhealthy solid fats are:
1. Grain-based desserts and snacks
2. Regular cheese
3. Sausage, franks, bacon, and ribs
4. Pizza
5. Fried potatoes (French fries and hash browns)

When organizing your food intake the bottom line according to the USDA 2010 Dietary Guidelines Report

  • We need fuel “food calories” for energy. Because we were “hunter gathers” and often had days with less food than we needed our bodies necessarily stored energy “fat.”  Eating regularly helps to regulate our metabolism.
  • Energy balance refers to the balance between calories consumed through eating and drinking and calories expended through physical activity and metabolic processes.
  • Energy consumed must equal energy expended for a person to remain at the same body weight.
  • Excess calorie intake and/or inadequate physical activity will result in excess weight.
  • Weight loss will occur when a calorie intake is less than calorie expenditure, which can be achieved by eating less, being more physically active, or a combination of the two.

2 COMMENTS

  • Bob Wagner says:

    Hey Dorothy
    Just wanted to let you know how proud I am of you , and your weight loss. I used to weigh 250 lbs and was miserable, now I weigh 175 and am a competitive cyclist. Sugar is the key, and the poison that brings us down. Good luck in your continued success.
    Bob Wagner
    Diamondhead Mississippi ,

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