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M.D. shows how food industry uses addictive power of fat/salt/sugar combo in manufactured foods

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posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 08:27 AM
Dr. David Kessler, former FDA commissioner in the U.S. under both Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, was interviewed on August 3, 2009 on the DemocracyNow! radio program and cable TV show. He confirms that the food industry has learned that the combination of fat, sugar, and salt in manufactured foods stimulates us to eat more. Bottom line: Yes, we are being set up by food manufacturers for deliberate food addictions, especially to restaurant food, but there are a number of ways we can fight back. Here is the transcript of that full interview:

And here is a link to the original start page for that interview, which includes a video version, an audio version, and an MP3 version:

He also has a new book out, The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite. Here's the Amazon link for that book:

In the DemocracyNow! interview, Kessler gives some interesting examples of how restaurant meals are especially problematic, since few if any restaurants give detailed nutritional information at the point of purchase, although more and more restaurant websites do have that info online. I was disillusioned, for instance, when I found out that almost all of the bagel varieties at Western Bagel have quite a lot of sugar added ... so That's why I had such a craving for them. Hmmmmm.

In the interview, they are joined at one point by journalist Arun Gupta, who was also previously interviewed about food on the DemocracyNow! show. Gupta discusses a flavor added to bacon, a flavor known in Japan as "umami." Umami is the fifth flavor, after sweet, salty, sour, and bitter; it is known in Japan as "deliciousness." It is a meaty, savory flavor (think MSG and its derivatives). As Gupta says in the Kessler interview, " (Umami) is highly addictive ... it elicits an actual neurochemical, physiological response."

Kessler's book does a lot more deconstruction of particular restaurant foods, such as Cinnabon and the Big Mac. Kessler is a pediatrician, by the way, and a former medical school dean at Yale and at UCSF.

In the interview, Kessler describes how he asked a restauranteur what is the most important thing customers should ask in a restaurant about the food, and the restauranteur answered, "Ask where the food comes from. If the restaurant doesn't know where the food is coming from, think twice before ordering it." -- That's a very cool answer, I'd say.

Oops, just noticed that at the top of the ATS website right now, there's a banner ad for Pizza Hut. I found out that recently Pizza Hut started adding a considerable amount of sugar to their pizza crust. How about that? I used to love Pizza Hut pizza until they made that change.

[edit on 8/5/2009 by Uphill]

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 09:15 AM
Atkins says fat is OK, stay away from sugar and large amounts of carbohydrates.
The Insulin action on carbohydrates, when we have enough energy
level, stores the fat.
Thus we are over eating ourselves to death.

If the insulin level is kept from jumping too high with sugar intake, the body fat is burned off.
As it should be and was proven by UK doctors in the 1950's.

Staying away from rising the insulin levels seems to be his approach.
Fat has no effect on insulin levels, so thats his take.

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 09:21 AM
The most addictive type of sugar been used in most products in the US even products that doesn't required sugar is corn syrup, because it also acts as a preservative.

And I agree Dr. Akin diet works if the only carbs you eat are complex cabs, fiber and no sugar but the natural sugar in fruits with moderation.

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 10:05 AM
reply to post by marg6043

I fully agree about the problems posed by high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). The Kessler interview is a long one, but on page 13, they do get into a discussion about HFCS, for 2 paragraphs.

I haven't yet seen Kessler's book, but nutrition writers like Kessler, Michael Pollan and Eric Schlosser generally use "sugar" as a catchall term to refer to all refined sweeteners, such as manufactured white sugar/brown sugar/HFCS, all that stuff.

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 10:18 AM
reply to post by Uphill

Interesting that when the commercials promoting corn syrup were introduced into the media they were calling for "moderation", but what they don't tell you is that "corn syrup" is added to almost every pre package products in the market, including baby food.

You really have to be careful and take your time when you go shopping just to see that most of the favorite foods and snacks out there have indeed corn syrup so the so call "moderation" is nothing but a lie.

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 10:23 AM
I seem to be able to eat whatever I want, as long as i exercise and drink water every day. also if i'm not hungry i simply don't eat.
I don't know tho I never go to the doctor so maybe i'm on the verge of a heart attack or something but i feel really healthy....hopefully in ten years it'll still be workin' for me.

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 11:52 AM
Of course corn syrup is in everything, GM corn additives will continue to cause huge boosts to the heath industry. Use food to sell more drugs, use drugs to sell more food, the unspoken FDA motto.

I stand by my belief that Americans deserve EVERYTHING they get, including the chronic health issues associated with being glutinous pigs.

"Well the food and drug companies made it possible for me to destroy myself and my country, so they are to blame!" Is a sad, sad, pathetic excuse.

[edit on 5-8-2009 by maus80]

posted on Aug, 5 2009 @ 01:47 PM
reply to post by Uphill

Which one of those three(fat, sugar(carbs) and salt) is addictive alone? That's where the real problem lies. When it comes to health, dietary fat and salt have little adverse effects compared to sugar(carbs).


posted on Aug, 7 2009 @ 08:25 AM
In the DemocracyNow interview with Dr. Kessler, he identified the following known addictive properties. (I am paraphrasing what he said in the interview; these are all his words, except for my connecting phrases.)

His most recent medical journal article is titled "Deconstructing the vanilla milkshake." During his interview with Amy Goodman, he asks which part of the vanilla milkshake ingredients is it that keeps us coming back for more? His answer is, it's the sugar that is the main driver.

Kessler goes on to say: "But when you add fat to the sugar, it's synergistic. With my colleague Gaetano di Chiara, we -- Gaetano studies the effect of amphetamine and coc aine on the brain's dopamine circuits. Dopamine is responsible for focusing your attention on a specific stimulus. And we always knew that amphetamine and coc aine raise the brain's dopamine level. ... we studied the effects of not just one nutrient, not just sugar, but sugar and fat, and we found, when you put them together, you get elevations of the brain's dopamine circuitry. And not only that, it doesn't habituate. It doesn't go down time after time. So we see that multi-potent, multi-sensory foods can stimulate the brain's neural circuitry."

Devolution's question is answered by what Kessler says a number of times over the course of this lengthy interview, that it is sugar that is the main driver. Kessler also says, however, that in manufactured food, what the producers of this food have learned is most successful for their product sales is to add sugar to fat, or where possible to add sugar to salt and fat. It is those combinations that are almost universally present in manufactured foods, and especially in restaurant foods.

Annemarie Colbin, Ph.D., a nutritionist and author of a number of books on topics related to natural foods (The Book of Whole Meals, Food and Healing are 2 of her titles), says that when she gets a new class of students in her natural foods classes, she always asks for a show of hands of those who think that sugar is addictive. On the average, about 80% of students raise their hands in agreement.

In her most recent book on natural foods remedies for osteoporosis, Dr. Colbin says that sometimes during a restaurant meal, when she is given a side order of boiled carrots, that in the restaurant kitchen they have added some sugar to the water in which the carrots have boiled. Dr. Colbin is able to notice that effect the next morning after she awakens. (She has not used concentrated sweeteners in many years, and thus is able to identify their effects on her soon after a restaurant meal.)

So the main ingredient that's a problem in processed foods is sugar. But sugar and fat, as Kessler said, have a synergistic effect together (which they often are in processed food) so that synergism presents a separate problem for serious consideration.

The response earlier in this thread that "Americans deserve everything they get" is understandable, but don't underestimate the power of the multinational food corporations, restaurants and fast-food outlets to adversely affect the health of the entire developed/developing world. Further, multinational corporations can move their headquarters anywhere they want to, such as Dubai, etc.

[edit on 8/7/2009 by Uphill]

posted on Feb, 2 2012 @ 11:31 AM
The online news for February 2, 2012 reports that scientists are now starting to ask that the U.S. government classify sugar (sucrose) as a toxin. Read all about it:

This movement builds upon the evidence already established by the MD and former FDA Commissioner whose book started off this thread. Other physicians (see the link provided by Gwyneth Paltrow in her blog GOOP, a link already listed in this thread) have already shown that sucrose meets all of the criteria established by the American Psychiatric Association for an addictive substance.

posted on May, 21 2012 @ 01:56 PM
The 2007 book Ending The Food Fight, by David Ludwig, MD, PhD, is also recommended on this topic. Ending The Food Fight zeroes in on childhood and adolescent obesity and gives families the tactics they need to replace fake foods with real foods. BMI percentiles for both boys and girls are included for ages 2-20. It's a paperback book, 343 pages. Dr. Ludwig is director of the Optimal Weight For Life Program at Boston Children's Hospital. It was co-written with Suzanne Rostler, MS, RD. Here's that link:

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