Sugar is sin in aim to be slim

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Mayors’ Messages - By SO­PHIE MOORE

SWAP­PING fad di­ets for per­ma­nent, life­style changes will be the di­et­ing trend for 2017 de­spite the tra­di­tional New Year res­o­lu­tions to lose those hol­i­day ki­los.

Sugar has been tar­geted in state and fed­eral ad cam­paigns af­ter re­search linked over­con­sump­tion to an in­creased risk of di­a­betes, heart dis­ease and can­cer.

Half of all Aus­tralians reg­u­larly con­sume more than the World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion’s rec­om­mended daily in­take of 54 grams, or 12 tea­spoons, of sugar a day.

Ac­cred­ited di­eti­cian and nu­tri­tion­ist Me­gan Hardy said the main is­sue with sugar was in­creased body weight.

“Body weight is our over­ar­ch­ing risk fac­tor for other dis­eases,” she said.

“It is linked with other dis­eases, an in­creased risk of can­cer, heart dis­eases; it has a big impact on our health.”

Cut­ting out sugar, where it is added in pro­cessed food and drinks, was one of the few di­etary re­stric­tions without neg­a­tive con­se­quences.

Ms Hardy said she would sup­port a tax on soft drinks high in sugar.

“I’m very much in line with im­pos­ing a tax as long as rev­enue is put back into health,” she said.

“The more we in­crease the prices the more we de­ter peo­ple from con­sum­ing be­cause the prices be­come pro­hib­i­tive for most peo­ple.”

Detoxing fell out of favour in 2016 to be re­placed by more manageable fast­ing di­ets.

The 5:2 fast­ing diet was back in the news af­ter early hu­man trials showed fast­ing had helped can­cer pa­tients avoid the side ef­fects of chemo­ther­apy and boosted their im­mune sys­tem to fight off can­cer cells.

Known as in­ter­mit­tent fast­ing, the 5:2 was cre­ated by Doc­tor Michael Mosley and jour­nal­ist Mimi Spencer in the United King­dom in 2013.

Pro­po­nents have sworn the diet helped them lose weight faster and made their mind sharper.

Ms Hardy said Dr Mosley had re­searched well and rec­om­mended the 5:2 over other forms of fast­ing di­ets.

“It works be­cause it’s five full days of healthy eat­ing fol­lowed by two days of re­stricted calo­ries, it doesn’t mat­ter if they’re in a row or in-be­tween.”

“The whole the­ory is about chang­ing the mind­set and psy­cho­log­i­cal change, rather than fo­cus­ing on just weight loss,” she said.

“Over the seven day week di­eters nat­u­rally start fo­cus­ing on those two days of re­duced in­take which nat­u­rally pro­gresses into other days lead­ing peo­ple into be­com­ing more mind­ful about their choices.”

Re­viewed in 2015, the 5:2 diet was found to help women lose weight, but no faster than a con­ven­tional, calo­rie count­ing diet.

Noth­ing sweet about sugar says di­eti­cian and nu­tri­tion­ist Me­gan Hardy.

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