From the FMS Global News Desk of Jeanne Hambleton

Released: 6/24/2014 6:00 PM EDT
Source Newsroom: Institute of Food Technologists (IFT)

Institute of Food Technologists 2014 Annual Meeting and Food Expo


Newswise — NEW ORLEANS— Sugar has been a part of the human diet since sugarcane was domesticated in 8000 B.C.,.

But today myths and misunderstandings about sugar and the role it plays in health abound. In the media, sugar has been linked to obesity, toxicity, addiction, and fatty liver disease, among a host of other health outcomes, but with little, no or poor research to back up such claims, according to a June 24 panel discussion at the 2014 Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Annual Meeting & Food Expo® in New Orleans.

Confusion exists not only among consumers, but among experts as well, with regard to the role sugar plays in the diet and what the dietary recommendations for sugar intake should be.

Government and health organizations’ recommendations for sugar intake have varied significantly based on different studies and different methodologies to evaluate those studies. “Sugars” include honey, sucrose (table sugar), high-fructose corn syrup, fruit juice concentrate and agave nectar.

For example, in 2002, the National Academy of Sciences recommended that added sugars provide no more than 25 percent of daily calories—the highest of recommended limitations on sugar.

In 2009, the American Heart Association recommended that, on average, women should consume no more than 100 calories a day as sugar; for men 150 calories a day.

In 2010, the European Food Safety Agency determined that there was not enough data to set a recommendation for sugar intake.

And now, in 2014, the World Health Organization is recommending that sugars not exceed 10 percent of daily calories and suggested a further reduction to less than 5 percent.

While sugar intakes in the U.S. have decreased over the past 10–15 years, obesity has continued to increase.

However, according to Roger Clemens, DrPH, CFS, Chief Scientific Officer of E.T. Horn and part-time faculty within the University of Southern California Regulatory Science Program, “The latest WHO recommendations are based mainly on efforts to reduce dental caries, not reduce weight. Moreover, efforts to reduce exposure to added sugar through taxation and production elimination have yielded inconsistent results.”

“Moving forward, it will be important to determine how we can get to the bottom of some of these issues surrounding sugar and health and develop dietary recommendations and policies that are evidence based and meaningful in terms of public health outcomes,” said Courtney Gaine, Ph.D. Senior Science Program Manger for the North American branch of the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), a nonprofit organization in Washington, DC.

ILSI North America has undertaken a project with the goal of reaching a better understanding of the interplay between sugar in the diet and health outcomes and to identify research gaps.

The questions ILSI plans to address with respect to sugar and health are:
• What is the long-term effect of a reduction in sugars intake on body weight and/or fatness in overweight/obese adults or in children?
• Do dietary sugars impact how the body accumulates fat differently than other energy-yielding nutrients?
• What is the effect of sugars intake on satiety and hunger mechanisms? Does intake of sugars affect hormones that control appetite and fullness? Is there a difference in satiety and appetite among different types of sugar (fructose, sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, added sugar vs sugar found naturally in foods)?
• Does the food source (food vs beverage) modify the effect of sugars intake a total calorie intake, and body weight and body composition?
• What are the mechanisms in the brain linking sugars consumption to a reward system/insulin and glycemic levels (“addictive behavior” or “sugar addiction”)? Does taste play a role in the process?

“Sugar intake has become a dominant health issue, but we should be cautious when making dietary recommendations when data are not available,” said Clemens.

About IFT
This year marks the 75th anniversary of the Institute of Food Technologists. Since its founding in 1939, IFT has been committed to advancing the science of food, both today and tomorrow. Our non-profit scientific society—more than 18,000 members from more than 100 countries—brings together food scientists, technologists and related professionals from academia, government and industry. For more information, please visit

My comment

If you link sugar with your weight and think you would like to know a little about losing weight complementary style you might enjoy reading this article. below.



Source National Center for Complementary & Alternative Medicine *(NSSAM)

More than two-thirds of adults and one-third of children in the United States are overweight or obese. Achieving a healthy weight, eating a healthy diet, and being physically active can help you control your cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar—and may also help you prevent weight-related diseases, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Although dietary supplements marketed for weight loss or appetite suppression are available in pharmacies, grocery stores, health food stores, and on the Internet, most of these products have not been proven effective and some have been proven to be dangerous. Here is what you need to know if you are considering a complementary health approach for losing weight.

  1. Ask yourself if a product sounds too good to be true. Be cautious if the claims for the product seem exaggerated or unrealistic and use phrases like “quick and effective” or “totally safe.” Be skeptical about information from personal “testimonials” about the product’s benefits. Keep in mind that testimonials, anecdotes, unsupported claims, and opinions are not the same as objective, evidence-based information.
  2. Be aware of the possibility of product contamination. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has found weight loss products sold as dietary supplements that contain hidden prescription drugs or other compounds. These tainted products can cause serious harm to unsuspecting consumers.
  3. There is no definitive scientific evidence to support the use of acai berry, bitter orange, and green tea supplements for weight loss. There is little reliable information about the safety of acai as a supplement, and there have been reports of serious side effects from taking bitter orange supplements and concentrated green tea extracts.
  4. Ephedra is dangerous, and the increased risk of heart problems and stroke far outweighs any potential benefits. In 2004, the FDA banned the U.S. sale of dietary supplements containing ephedra. The FDA found that these supplements had an unreasonable risk of injury or illness—particularly cardiovascular complications—and risk of death.
  5. There is some emerging evidence suggesting that some mind and body approaches are generally safe and may be useful as complements to other weight-loss interventions. Research in this area is in its early stages, but results of studies on yoga and mindful eating are promising.
  6. Make lifestyle changes that work for you, including a healthy eating plan and regular physical activity. The key to achieving a healthy weight (NHLBI) is making changes in your eating and physical activity habits that work for you and that you can maintain for the rest of your life.
  7. Talk with your health care provider. If your doctor does not ask you about healthy eating, physical activity, and weight management during your regular check-up, you can start the conversation. Your health care provider can assess your weight and health risks, determine whether you need to lose weight, and provide information that will help you make informed decisions about a weight-loss program. You may feel uncomfortable talking about your weight with your health care provider, but remember that he or she is there to help improve your health.

Me again

1.     If you are looking for a homebound exercise programme you can tap dance around your kitchen  in time with the radio and without holding a saucepan  full of hot water.

2.   You can make a point of running up and down the  stairs more times a day, adding one more trip each day.

3.  Or if the sun is shining start a regular routine of walking around the garden. Maybe 10 times first time, then 12 and 14 and so on.  You might pick up a weed or two as you dawdle past the  dandelions. Maybe even sing a little song to yourself to burn up a bit more energy.

It might be worth weighing yourself  before you start your home style routines  and after a couple of weeks find out if you are making progress  or need to do all three exercises. Good luck. Back soon. Jeanne




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