Archives for: April 2004, 23
I just saw this article on Yahoo! tonight, and had to post it here. My response follows.
Study Blames Corn Syrup for Rise of Diabetes in US Thu Apr 22, 3:21 PM ET
By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Correspondent
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Corn syrup and other refined foods may be much to blame for the huge increase in type-2 diabetes in the United States over the past few decades, U.S. researchers said on Thursday.
A study of nearly 100 years of data on what Americans eat show a huge increase in processed carbohydrates, especially corn syrup, and a large drop in the amount of fiber from whole grains, fruits and vegetables.
It parallels a spike in the number of cases of type-2 diabetes, caused by the body's increasing inability to properly metabolize sugars.
"We are seeing this big jump in the number of calories," that people are eating, Dr. Lee Gross, a family physician at the Inter-Medic Medical Group in North Port, Florida, who led the study, said in a telephone interview.
"We tried to break down where are these calories coming from? We have heard everyone debating is it because of fat, is it because of carbohydrate and it is not really clear," Gross added.
"This shows the increase in the past 20 years is almost exclusively carbohydrates and certainly corn syrup consumption has increased dramatically."
Gross said he was not "picking on the corn syrup industry," but added, "It is hard to ignore the fact that 20 percent of our carbohydrates are coming from corn syrup -- 10 percent of our total calories."
An estimated 16 million Americans have type-2 diabetes, the sixth leading cause of death overall. And many studies have linked a high intake of refined carbohydrates and other foods with a high "glycemic index" with the development of diabetes.
SPIKES IN INSULIN
Foods with a high glycemic index cause a spike in insulin production. Many experts agree that, over time, repeatedly eating foods in this pattern can cause insulin resistance, which in turn leads to diabetes.
Writing in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (news - web sites), Gross and colleagues said they used data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (news - web sites) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (news - web sites) to show that people have eaten about the same amount of carbohydrates a day on average -- 500 grams -- since 1909.
But instead of whole grains and vegetables, people are getting more and more of those carbs in the form of processed grains and sugars -- most of all, in corn syrup, they said.
Gross, with colleagues at the Harvard School of Public Health and the CDC, found that starting in 1980, people started consuming steadily more calories, with an average increase in total calories of 500 calories a day.
"Specifically, 428 calories (nearly 80 percent of the increase in total energy) came from carbohydrates," they wrote.
Gross said people are probably not eating all those 500 calories. Some could be wasted. "It's an estimate. It's hard to interpret," he said.
But the trend was clear.
"During the same period, the prevalence of type-2 diabetes increased by 47 percent and the prevalence of obesity increased by 80 percent," they wrote.
Audrae Erickson, President of the Corn Refiners Association, called the report misleading.
"Diabetes rates are rising in many countries around the world that use little or no high fructose corn syrup in foods and beverages, which supports findings by the Centers for Disease Control and the American Diabetes Association that the primary causes of diabetes are obesity, advancing age and heredity," she said in a statement.
My initial reaction to this was "Well, duuuuhhhh!" Food manufacturers are feeding humans stuff we weren't meant to be eating, and we're all getting away from REAL food, eating processed JUNK, and performing TONS less physical activity than humans have ever done in the history of the world. No wonder two thirds of Americans are overweight! And the increase in diabetes rates is not surprising at all, either, considering the effect of that crap on the human body.
In other news, I just found out that I did not get the promotion I was up for. I was actually a bit relieved, which surprised me. It would have complicated my schedule to have taken that shift, and I don't know that they would have allowed me to take every Thursday evening off for acting class.... I do, though, still have my appointment tomorrow morning with the recruiter from the Dallas-based company, so we'll see what she has to say and if the position sounds interesting enough for me to consider switching jobs. If it helps me reach my acting goals more quiclkly, I'm THERE!
My scene partner and I did our scene tonight, and other than completely blowing one of my lines, we did a good job. I got some good notes, and it went much better than I expected considering that we hadn't rehearsed it together in about a week and a half, AND I was still learning my lines last night here at work! We have to bring it back again next week, and I want to know these lines inside and out so that no matter WHAT I'm doing I can pull them out of me. My scene partner and I will work on it this Sunday and make some adjustments.
After class I dashed home to grab some food, and didn't have time to prepare anything at all, so I grabbed a trukey breast from the refrigerator, gnawed a few bites off a turkey leg while standing at the sink, and headed to work. So much for Os sitting down whenever we eat something. Even if I'm sitting down when I eat these days, I'm usually wolfing it down. Not good.
As I walked into the office, I heard my name being called loudly and repeatedly. I knew I wasn't late, so I wondered what was going on. Apparently my team lead was doing a monthly drawing, and had just drawn my name out of the bag for a Full Paid Day Off. Cool! I thought the timing was interesting, though, considering that I'd been in the running for the Team Lead position and that I didn't get it. Hhhhmmmmm..... the same day I get a 'prize' of a full paid day off? Could be coincidence, but it sounds like a consolation prize to me! Apparently if we employees don't miss any days, are never late, and fill out all their time cards properly, we're entered into a monthly contest, and this is what I won.
I've got my turkey breast and some salad for lunch today, as well as my famous trail mix (chocolate chips, walnuts, dried cherries, dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds) for snacks. Tomorrow will be another busy day, too, with the phone call with the recruiter in the morning, a quick nap, and errands tomorrow afternoon, as well as a happy hour for work, then a workout with the trainer for the infomercial