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Consuming too much sugar is as harmful as tobacco, warns leading health expert

Thursday December 15, 2016

Consuming too much sugar can be as damaging as smoking, warns a leading nutritionist and director at leading ethical vitamin company Viridian Nutrition.

Ben Brown, naturopath and author of The Digestive Health Solution says the challenges faced surrounding the regulation of sugar means it can be compared to tobacco.

He says there is unprecedented growing scientific opinion which accepts that high sugar intake is toxic and people should be restricting their intake of the sweet stuff.

The strong link between sugar and chronic diseases

For years, it was believed that fat was the real culprit behind chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease – in return, the food manufacturers responded by introducing low fat or fat-free alternative products changing the world’s eating habits.

Today it’s recognised that sugar is a significant contributory factor in the rising number of devastating diseases such as diabetes - Public Health England recently gave a forecast that the number of people with diabetes could top five million by 2035 if obesity rates continue to increase.

But the health risks of having a sweet tooth are not a limited to the consumption of food alone but also to drinking sugar in the form beverages such as energy drinks, fruit juices and soft drinks.  

Viridian Nutrition’s Technical Director Ben Brown comments:

“Large-scale studies of sugar-sweetened beverages have shown strong links to diseases you might expect, such as heart disease, obesity, and type-2 diabetes. In most cases increases in risk are similar magnitude to smoking or not exercising. But, most concerning, other and sometimes surprising diseases are now strongly associated with drinking sugar, such as gout, arthritis, autoimmune disease, fatty liver disease, depression, and dementia. It appears that sugar does actually rot your body, resulting in breakdown of organs and tissues and ultimately life-threatening diseases.”

Sugar is the new tobacco

He continues: “Sugar is the new tobacco, with comparable health effects and controversy surrounding its regulation. It is clear that too much is toxic, and that cutting down sugar intake is a major health priority for most people. The problem is that modern, processed foods are sugar-coated, both literally and figuratively, so cutting down on sugar is hard. That’s why a structured dietary “sugar detox” program that raises awareness of the problem while providing support tools and social motivation has the power to lift the lid on sugar and transform lives.”

Viridian Nutrition’s response to the chronic pandemic of sugar-related conditions is to
launch the unique 7 Day Sugar Detox Kit to help re-educate British taste buds and kick the sugar habit.

Developed as more than just a quick fix, Viridian Nutrition wants to encourage consumers during their detox journey to look more closely at the food and drinks labels
and see how processed foods - which are likely to contain hidden sugars - can sabotage healthy eating.

A structured dietary “sugar detox” programme

Cleverly designed to resemble a bag of sugar, the Viridian 7 Day Sugar Detox Kit helps
people to cut out a bag a sugar from their diet in 7 days – based on the average intake of added sugars of 344.4g per week for women and 478.8g for men. (Source: The Official Statistics National Diet and Nutrition Survey from Public Health England and Food Standards Agency)

The 7 Day Sugar Detox Programme:

  • Step-by-step guide
  • 7 day meal plan by superfood chef Oliver McCabe 
  • A week’s supply of nutritional supplement Chromium and Cinnamon Complex Veg Caps (Chromium has been shown to contribute to the maintenance of normal blood glucose levels.)

Additional free resources:
The free Viridian 7 Day Sugar Detox App allows users to identify their personal preferences, set their start date and track their progress. It also contains 7 days of detailed recipes, a shopping list and health store locator.

Taking part in the Viridian 7 Day Sugar Detox programme can lead to many positive
outcomes which may include weight-loss, improved energy levels, reduced sugar
cravings and a general feeling of wellbeing and vitality. The supplement itself
is gluten-free and suitable for vegans.

Sugar-detoxers are also being encouraged to use the hashtag #7daysugardetox on social

The kit is available at specialist health food stores retailing at £7.
For stockists visit:

For further information about the detox and the health effects of sugar visit:

Key sugar facts:
  • The World Health Organisation recommends that refined sugar contributes to less than 5 percent of a person’s total daily energy intake, which is about 6-7 teaspoons of sugar for adults or 3-4 teaspoons for children.
  • High sugar foods can lead to high blood sugar and increased insulin levels which consequently cause blood sugar crashes, brain fog, low mood, fatigue and increased hunger. 
  • Most people do not realise they are eating excess sugar because it is mostly ‘hidden sugars’ in common foods from cereals to salad dressings as well as to most processed foods.
  • A slice of pizza can contain nearly 1 teaspoon of sugar meanwhile 100g of blueberry yogurt has the equivalent of over 3 teaspoons, 1 serving of pasta sauce has nearly 3 teaspoons and a 330ml can of soda has nearly 9 teaspoons of sugar.


TAGS: Nutrition News and Viewssugar, sugar detox


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