Perhaps this is not the best day of the year for this topic….
A recent small study of 43 children is summarized by the NY Times: Cutting Sugar Improves Children’s Health in Just 10 Days
Obese children who cut back on their sugar intake see improvements in their blood pressure, cholesterol readings and other markers of health after just 10 days, a rigorous new study found.
The new research may help shed light on a question scientists have long debated: Is sugar itself harming health, or is the weight gain that comes from consuming sugary drinks and foods mainly what contributes to illness over the long term?
In the new study, which was financed by the National Institutes of Health and published Tuesday in the journal Obesity, scientists designed a clinical experiment to attempt to answer this question. They removed foods with added sugar from a group of children’s diets and replaced them with other types of carbohydrates so that the subjects’ weight and overall calorie intake remained roughly the same.
After 10 days, the children showed dramatic improvements, despite losing little or no weight. The findings add to the argument that all calories are not created equal, and they suggest that those from sugar are especially likely to contribute to Type 2 diabetes and other metabolic diseases, which are on the rise in children, said the study’s lead author, Dr. Robert Lustig, a pediatric endocrinologist at the Benioff Children’s Hospital of the University of California, San Francisco.
My take: For a long time, I have been telling patients that if they make only one change, I would start by eliminating sugar-sweetened beverages. While this is a small study, it reinforces the view that sugar intake needs to be limited.
This post included last year’s pumpkin (Halloween 2014): NASPGHAN Postgraduate Course 2014 -Liver Module – gutsandgrow
This year’s pumpkin: