Quite a few people have mentioned Jamie Oliver’s latest TV programme to me called Sugar Rush in which the TV chef examines sugar’s contribution to health problems like Type 2 Diabetes and what can be done to help.
There was a lot of interesting information in the programme and quite a few shocking scenes as well, not least babies and young children in parts of Mexico being offered Coca Cola from a bottle in communities where it can be quite acceptable for an individual to drink as much as two litres of soda a day.The programme is certainly worth a watch as I do talk a lot on my Kinesiology training courses, about the harmful effects that too much sugar can have on the mind and body. However I do feel the programme could have gone much further by talking about the harmful effects of sugar-free, no added sugar and so-called ‘diet drinks’ as well.
As a parent I would far rather give my child (as a treat, and in a small quantity) a drink containing sugar, than a ‘diet’ drink containing aspartame for example, and I feel it is so important that people are informed about the chemicals they could potentially be consuming as well.
Aspartame is an artificial sweetener, an additive. It’s not a natural product, it’s a chemical. The molecule is made up of three components. One is called Phenylalanine, which is about 50% of the molecule and the other is Aspartic Acid, which is 40%. The other 10% is so-called Methyl Ester, which as soon as it’s swallowed becomes free methyl alcohol. Methanol. Wood alcohol, which is a poison.
I do appreciate that Jamie and his team can’t include everything to please everyone in films such as this, but many, many, many programmes have been made about the harmful effects of sugar and yet I am struggling to think of one documentary shown on mainstream TV about chemical sweeteners, which often get chosen by people who become mindful, fearful even, of consuming too much sugar.
You can find out more about Jamie’s Sugar Rush programme by clicking here:
You can find out more about aspartame by clicking here
… and in the meantime I think the most sensible advise (which Jamie does share) is to consume substances like sugar in moderation and remember if you don’t buy it and if it isn’t in your cupboards, you simply won’t be able to eat or drink it.