Growing up in the 60’s, I was very familiar with the movie “Mary Poppins” and the memorable song, “A Spoonful of Sugar”. The lyrics chimed that adding a spoonful of sugar would make medicine go down in the most delightful way. Ironically, a movie that I recently saw, “Fed Up,” takes a serious look at how the addition of hidden sugars to nearly every manufactured food product sold in stores over the past few decades has left millions of people world-wide suffering with obesity, diabetes and metabolic syndrome to name a few.
The movie details how it’s no coincidence that as food manufactures began to introduce low-fat and non-fat product options, they had to include more hidden sugars into these products to make them palatable enough to actually sell. As a result, people around the globe began to silently pack on excess pounds and suffer related diseases while hoping to be more health conscious. Currently, in the United States, 66% of adults and 33% of children are overweight or obese. Sadly we are reaching the point where more people are dying from complications of obesity, rather than hunger. How can this be? Well, sugar is acidic and addictive. In a study cited in the movie, 40 out of 43 cocaine-addicted lab rats chose sugar water over cocaine when given the option. Just like drugs, the foods we crave and become addicted to are the very foods that kill us!
Along with the realization that processed food and beverages are filled with sugars and chemicals, the movie reminds us that we have all been conditioned to think we just need to exercise more to be healthy or lose weight. There are gyms and exercise classes in every neighborhood, DVDs advertised day and night, and online videos simply a click away. However, people are still having a disconnect to the fact that good abs begin in the kitchen, not the gym. Millions of people continue to workout and focus on calorie intake, not realizing that many of those very calories are empty and provide no nutritional value whatsoever.
So what are the take aways from the movie? Become a label reader immediately! Understand what companies are putting into their products. Don’t fall victim to fancy advertising campaigns and marketing gimmicks. Choose to buy foods closest to how they appear on earth. This is a sure way to get more nutrition in every bite. Limit sugar intake and unlock better health right away. Numerous studies have proven that repeated insulin response from sugar and simple carbohydrates leads to the production of fat and inflammation internally.
To learn more, find Fed Up at a theater near you or contact me for wellness coaching that will help you learn how to improve your nutrient intake and break bad eating habits in a safe and proven method. My goal is to help you live the best version of yourself!
Traci Vincent, PT