By Lady Carla Cassata Davis, MPH
Serving sweets, which consist of refined carbohydrates, as a treat to children not only sends the wrong message, it does them a lot of harm; harm that can stay with them for a lifetime. The food a person becomes familiar with as a child forms the eating pattern they will follow as an adult.
Children who are given sweets/refined carbohydrates on a daily basis develop excess fat cells and eventually malfunctioning glands. As adults, these people have a difficult time controlling their weight and their craving for sweets; especially when the become depressed, lonely, or just wish to feel better. These sweets become a psychological comfort. Their unhealthy glands do not secrete sufficient hormones, which can lead to many illnesses, including obesity, diabetes, hypoglycemia, improper growth,hypertension, heart disease, depression, psychological problems, and infertility.
Food is defined as a substance that nourishes and promotes growth; material eaten to sustain life. Therefore, if a substance such as refined sugar or other refined carbohydrates is void of any nutrients or fibre, it can not and should not be classified as a food.
In fact, these substances have a drug like effect on the body. As any sweet lover knows, these cravings can become very habit forming; in other words, a real addiction. At first these refined carbohydrates stimulate and provide energy. that is what we all hear from influenced government representatives and industries that promote these so -called “fun” foods; better known as “junk” foods. However, this temporary fix soon leads to depleted adrenal and pancreas function. Children and teens are most affected by this damage. Sadly, teens with this condition are also much more susceptible to drug addiction, because of a drug (including tobacco and caffeine) gives that person a desperately needed, temporary lift. Eventually, as more nutrients are depleted, this hypoglycemic condition becomes even worse. Hence, serious drug addiction develops. This as we all know can lead to depression and then suicide or death from an over dose.
Juvenile delinquency is a common symptom of this sort of condition. Simply check the diet of any delinquent or youth or all those on a shooting rampage. A junk food high sugar diet is the one thing they all have in common. Cut out the sugar and I believe a high percent of crime could be prevented. Surprisingly, all the “experts” have yet to acknowledge this fact. Perhaps, it is because the sugar industry is one of the largest contributors of PAC money to Congress in the USA. In Australia, this industry is also very influential. Nevertheless, time has a way of revealing the truth.
Highly recommended reading for every parent and teacher: Food, Teens, and Behavior by Barbara Reed. The Natural Press. Dr. Reed had the most successful program of its kind and it should be implemented in every school.
To overcome any drug addiction, even alcoholism, one must first correct the body’s sugar/glucose metabolism. Parents who are trying to help their children overcome their drug addiction should be aware of this basic fact. This is done by first eliminating the cause (refined sugar/carbohydrates and other drugs including tobacco, etc.) and by rebuilding the endocrine (glandular) system with nourishing wholesome food and supplements.
Diabetes is another end result that occurs, from an abundant intake of refined sugar/carbohydrates along with a diet lacking in essential nutrients. Statistics show that this is a serious widespread problem in countries with high sugar consumption. As if this isn’t enough, sugar depletes the immune system and promotes bacteria. White T-cells actually become immobilized and stick together. The lymphatic system becomes congested. Sore throats are usually the first symptom. Then, the body produces more mucus in an effort to try and eliminate the bacteria. Much congestion builds up in the sinuses and respiratory system. If sugar consumption continues, eventually, plaque builds up in the arteries leading to atherosclerosis.
We all know that sugar breeds bacteria in the mouth, which causes dental decay. Eliminating sugar is a much more sensible way to prevent tooth decay than using fluoride, which is a toxic waste by-product of industry. Sugar also creates unfriendly bacteria in the intestine, greatly contributing to yeast infections.
It doesn’t stop there. Sugar can cause ulcers, and play havoc with one’s bone structure, which can be devastating to growing children. See Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Dr. Weston A. Price, DDS – Published by Keats Publishers.
As little as a quarter of a teaspoon of sugar in the stomach creates a highly acidic condition. In order to compensate for this, the body’s mineral reserves are called into action. Thus, calcium and other minerals are robbed from bones. (This also applies to other acid forming substances such as coffee and carbonated drinks).
Taking a lot of calcium alone is not the answer, since that will inhibit the absorption of magnesium. A magnesium deficiency sets the stage for kidney stones, nervous conditions, depression, heart disease, hypertension and high blood pressure. Taking in an equal amount or higher ratio of magnesium in relation to calcium (in foods or supplements) will enhance the absorption of calcium into the teeth and bones, where it belongs. Of course, various other nutrients come into play. For example chromium and protein can be very helpful in overcoming sugar cravings. Sugar robs the body of important B vitamins and contributes to many mental and physical ailments, including hair loss, wrinkled skin, dermatitis, and anaemia. Read Sugar Blues by Jim Duffy – Published by Warner Books.
Not too long ago, Harvard University conducted a study to find out what ages the body. Their findings revealed what most ages the body is the elevation of insulin, which is caused by the consumption of refined sugar/carbohydrates and drugs, including caffeine, nicotine, etc.
Last but not least, sugar is the most polluting crop in the world. The Everglades, in Florida, USA is the most threatened National Park in the USA, and it is from all the chemicals used on the production of sugar. Taxpayers had to fork out a large chunk of the $360 million clean-up costs, even through private sugar companies were to blame. Wild life in these areas is still threatened from toxic pollution crated from sugar production. In Hawaii, smoke from burning the sugar contributes to high incidences of asthma and other respiratory ailments. High rates of leukaemia among the children also exist.
Many food labels are deceiving. They say “natural,” yet the product may contain refined sugar. This ingredient is far from natural and should NOT be classified as such.
Read the small ingredients section listed on all food labels. Avoid products containing sugar, corn syrup, dextrose, sucrose, refined flour and even organic cane juice (another name for sugar). There are many good products on the market today that are made without refined sugar/carbohydrates, including cookies and cereal.
Above all, do not teach your children that sweets are treats. Mother Nature provides the real treats. They are wholesome nourishing foods, sweetened naturally by the Sun. It is called Manga in Polynesia.
Below are suggestions for more healthy, natural sweets.
• Organic, unsulfured dried fruits such as dates, figs, raisins, peaches, apricots, cherries, papaya/pawpaws, mangos, prunes, pears and apples, etc.
• Organic cherries, and berries of all kinds.
• Organic pomegranates, grapes, plumbs, grapefruits, tropical fruits mentioned above and bananas.
• Popsicles made from unsweetened fruit juice.
• Jello made from organic unsweetened fruit juice and unflavoured gelatin.
• Pureed fruit. Many different combinations can be made.
• Fruit cocktail – home made with various organic fruits and unsweetened juice.
• Melons or pawpaw/papaya with fresh lemon juice and mint.
• Unboiled honey or fruit sweetened natural ice cream or yoghurt from unhomogenized milk/cream.
• Date sugar, unsulphured molasses, rice syrup/malt made from whole brown rice and barley sprouts, stevia.
• Date/rice syrup sweetened carob/chocolate drops or candy.
• Fruit juice or rice sweetened chocolate.
• Organic fruit or granola bars with no refined sugar, corn syrup, dextrose, sucrose, or hydrogenated oil.
• Whole grain cookies or crackers that are lightly sweetened with fruit, unboiled honey or rice syrup , with no hydrogenated oil.
• Whole grain cakes, pies, cheese cakes or muffins that are fruit juice, unboiled honey or rice syrup sweetened.
• Natural, unboiled, unrefined honey. Other recommended reading : Get the Sugar Out by Ann Louise Gittlement.
Editor’s note: Lady Carla Cassata Davis is contributing a three part series of articles on sugar to The NZ Journal of Natural Medicine, beginning in issue 8.