Kick the habit - A book review

I was recently asked by a colleague on the other side of the pond to review her new ebook. It's served as a great revision session and fun to hear someone else's point of view, mentally nodding to some points as well as and having a little silent debate with the author about others I wasn't so sure about.

Margaret's book "Breaking the Sugar Habit" is only short and sets out to back arguments out there that: 1 - we are eating too much sugar, 2 - it's hard for us to stop and 3 - it's leading to health problems. (Photos from now on all my own).

She starts by highlighting that in the USA, the average adult consumes around 23 teaspoons of added sugar every day. She then explains sugar digestion in understandable terms including about how sugars can either be found on their own or joined together to make complex starches. There's a fair amount about  fructose (fructose is another type of single sugar molecule, like glucose).

Margaret is not in the fructose fan club! She argues that it has been overlooked and is responsible for a lot of the fat build up that goes on in our tummies and livers; the basis of the point makes sense as extra sugar in the body is eventually changed into fat. She has a collection of studies to back the point but as they don't have many people in them, it's hard to say they're representative for all of us. 

Revision made fun. I got carried away (what a surprise)
There is however a great reference table of food-fructose contents. Margaret also explains the link between too much sugar and type 2 diabetes, which I think most would agree with. She also refers to the fact that too much sugar in the blood knackers vessels, increasing the risk of heart disease. There is reference to super huge studies (including the famous Nurses Health Study that looked at more than 200,000 nurses over 30+ years), as one of their findings was reportedly that drinking lots of sweetened drinks increased the risk of high blood pressure.

There is a particularly valid point about too much sugar in the body being turned into cholesterol, which is turned into oestrogen, which may increase the risk of breast cancer. I found this interesting thinking about the previous blog I wrote on the 2-day diet, which was initially developed to look at the effect of weight loss on breast cancer.

Who would have thought?
Margaret also talks about the hot topic of 'a sugar addiction', which comes from the fact that sugar taps into the same pathways in the brain as substance addiction and love... actually.

The step-by-step guide on how to reduce your sugar intake is interesting but you'll have to buy the ebook to find out more. It's nice to have a step-by-step guide on how to achieve what the author is saying we should be doing - I also liked the ten top tips for success.

Margaret signs off by talking about how important it is that, if we are going to eat high-sugar foods, we should be picking those with other nutrients as well. Apparently proppa maple syrup is made from boiling maple leaves, and if you get the unrefined stuff, can be a rich source of calcium.

Margaret Wertheim's ebook Breaking the Sugar Habit: Practical Ways to Cut the Sugar, Lose the Weight, and Regain Your Health is available as a pre-launch PDF now for $3.95 and is due for release on Amazon soon.

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