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Mainstream Carbohydrate Recommendations--Nutrition Science or Food Lobbying?

by Amiee Aristotelous on July 02, 2020

If you go onto the USDA’s website and follow the MyPlate guidelines for foods and servings, when all is added up, the average person is advised to eat around 250 grams of carbohydrates per day, many of which come from processed foods. To put it into perspective, this amount of carbohydrates is equivalent to eating eight glazed donuts! One may say that carbohydrates from the recommended MyPlate foods are different than the ones found in donut. Unfortunately, your body is negatively affected by too many carbohydrates, whether they come from their suggested breads, pastas, rices, cereals….or from donuts.

Why is it so important that we reduce our average mainstream carbohydrate intake? According to the Center for Disease Control, more than thirty million Americans (around ten percent) are afflicted with diabetes and ninety to ninety-five percent of these people have type II diabetes, which is often caused by diets that include too much sugar, and carbohydrates turn into sugar. An added concern, type II diabetes is on the rise in groups where it used to be uncommon, such as children and adolescents.

If you are unaware of how type II diabetes develops, your pancreas makes the hormone, insulin and insulin is the regulating component that lets blood sugar into the cells to be used for energy. In the presence of type II diabetes, the insulin cannot make the cells respond which results in insulin resistance. The pancreas reacts by creating more insulin but will not be able to keep up, resulting in rising blood sugar which then establishes an environment for pre-diabetes and type II diabetes. Blood sugar levels that are too high are associated with a plethora of health issues including, but not limited to, excessive weight gain, heart disease, kidney disease, and vision loss.  Fortunately, millions of these blood sugar-related ailments can be prevented or even managed with proper nutrition. Unfortunately, the current USDA nutrition recommendations that are provided to the public may actually cause these conditions—not prevent them!

You may be wondering--why are we told, by trusted governmental sources, to eat these foods if they may lead us down a path of type II diabetes, weight gain, and heart disease? The United States Department of Agriculture plays a heavy role in determining these recommendations and then these same guidelines are incorporated in nutrition education curriculum which is taught to nutritionists, as well as some doctors. Essentially, as opposed to being based on scientific research and evidence, these recommendations are influenced by food producers, manufactures, and special interest groups. One of the USDA’s largest priorities is to strengthen and support food, agriculture, and farming industries so these guidelines may be disproportionately based on profit as opposed to the health of the general population.

Every year, the food industry donates millions of dollars to politicians who are in charge of making decisions regarding food regulation. This results in the industry’s ability to market foods that are laden with sugar, salt, calories, and unhealthy fats. For example, the United States Department of Health and Human Services, as well as the USDA vetoed their own expert panel’s suggestions to reduce processed meat and sugary beverage consumption in their 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines, despite substantial evidence that those items are harmful to public health. Through this orchestration of campaign funding and lobbying, the food industry has effectively squashed and avoided evidence‐based guidelines and taxation. Therefore, the industry has been somewhat allowed to market, formulate, and sell foods that are proven to be detrimental to health when consumed in excess. 

In addition to our own regulatory agencies who should be protecting our health by providing accurate information regarding nutrition, we have product powerhouses such as Coca-Cola who have donated millions of dollars to researchers whose intentions are to downplay the effects of sugary beverages on weight gain. Of course we may expect this sort of underhanded activity when it comes to a large corporation that is trying to market its products, but we don’t necessarily expect it from Harvard Scientists. Back in the 1960s, Harvard scientists were paid by the sugar industry to minimize the link between heart disease and sugar. They had to name a new supposed culprit to take sugar’s place and the scapegoat was fat. Unfortunately this faulty, money-based science has been the foundation for a variety of nutrition guidelines throughout the past five decades and has led the masses down a path of falsehoods when considering sugar, carbohydrate, and fat intake in their daily nutrition regimens.

One of the primary keys to weight loss and healthy blood sugar is to decrease carbohydrate intake because carbohydrates turn into sugar, and sugar turns into fat if not burned. Doctor’s Weight Loss products and meal plans are formulated to be lower in carbohydrates and sugar which is why our customers achieve dramatic results. The best part is, you won’t feel like you’re on a “diet” as our nutrition plans are delicious and allow you to eat several times per day--click here to check them out!

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