So I finallllly finished Sugar Blues and wow it’s an amazing book. To be honest, it was kind of boring at first when it was talking about the history of sucrose but as it started talking about how your body reacts to it, it’s mind blowing. This book was recommended to me when I was at my sister’s place and I had cooked lunch for a friend of hers. It was below zero that day and I offered her some green tea (sorry I don’t do black tea/chai) to warm her up from the harsh outside cold. I asked her the usual question, “How much sugar do you take?” and she replied with a negative, drinking her tea without any sweeteners. I found this to be a little out of the ordinary (usually people reply with something over 3 teaspoons!) but I didn’t inquire farther. Later on in our lunch date, we were talking about how I was studying nutrition and she brought up the fact that she doesn’t take sugar after she read Sugar Blues. At that point, I was taken aback. I knew too much sugar was bad for you, but eliminating it totally out of your diet was quite astonishing. She proceeded to tell us the positive results she saw with herself and it got me thinking. It wasn’t until I finished In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan until I seriously considered reading this book of hers. Pollan opened my eyes to a side of nutrition that isn’t taught at school and showed me a whole new world. All this calories counting, fat is bad, low carb diet, what is the answer to obesity was taking up too much of my time when it actually had a very simple answer. “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly Plants.” And when he talks about food, he means REAL food. I’m sorry, having monocalcium phosphate in my food sounds like I’m eating chemicals, not food.
So Sugar. Did you know that intially, “blood was used to clarify the juice of the sugar cane. Eventually that method was replaced and charred animal bones were used to bleach the sugar.” That’s pretty nasty. Actually, reallly nasty. I wonder what they bleach sugar with now because you know it naturally doesn’t come in white crystallized form. And in England in 1816 it was illegal for a brewer to have sugar in his possession because it meant that he might contaminate the drink with sugar.
Another interesting fact is that Russia, China and Formosa make their cigarettes out of air-dried tobacco like the American Indians did and there’s no correlation between smoking and lung cancer in those countries. Whereas in America, Britain and France, air-drying is not used. Instead flue curing is used which is a method to speed up the drying process and ferments the natural sugars of tobacco. In simple terms, this just means there’s unnatural sugar production with this process. They also add sugar during the blending process. Britain produces cigarettes that have the highest sugar content in the world. They too have the highest rate of lung cancer in the world. No wonder the American Indians didn’t have issues with lung cancer.
Anyho, I’ve decided to conduct an expirement and give Dufty benefit of the doubt. I’ve decided for the next two weeks to stay away from all processed food, including white flour, rice, and sugar starting Saturday as I need a day to shop and get myself started. I will have to raid Whole Foods and Wel-Farm tomorrow. I know that it’ll be hard, especially when I have to eat at someone’s house and not offend them plus cravings. This means no tapioca drinks either since theyre loaded with sugar. 😦 Dufty gives some suggestions at the end of his book, but they’re a little too gung ho for me. I’ll post some of things that I make and any changes that I see with myself. Two weeks might be too short to see any results, but I don’t even know if I can last a week. This might seem a little crazy, but it won’t hurt and I’m up for the challenge.
Now I can finally start Twinkie Deconstructed.
Oh and side note, if you decide to make the apple pie in my previous post, to avoid oven mess, place a rack below the pie pan and line the bottom rack with foil so it can catch all the drippings. Voila! Easy clean up. I wish I had thought of it before.