I was excited to see a special report on sugar and illness on the news last night. It is about time! Health enthusiasts have known this for decades. And not just about Diabetes either.
Sugar Blues came out in the 70’s or 80’s. And of course a lot of people pooh-poohed it. They didn’t want to know. But the “What-you-don’t-know-won’t-hurt-you mentality doesn’t change cause and effect. And we have seen the effects in our society–an epidemic of obesity, Diabetes, heart disease and cancer. (The auto-immune diseases have come more from the sugar substitutes.)
Thank God, finally science has caught up. Two different doctors doing research on it have labeled it a “toxin” –good for them.
I was trying to remember how long I have known about this, and then I realized that I wrote Tommy Tortoise Gets the Sugar Blues 36 years ago. It is a children’s picture book, I just published this year, about an animated tortoise who learns in school, from his caring teacher Mr Toad, that sugar causes cavities.
Tommy is sick, not wanting to know this, because he loves sweets. His life is ruined. Then he realizes that he has no teeth, so surely this doesn’t apply to him, which he happily shares with his mother. Feeling exempt from consequences, he revels in his new freedom, and loads up on his favorite food–sugar.
Yes, he has symptoms of irritability, difficulty focusing and paying attention, being especially tired, but he is too young to connect the dots, and consoles himself with eating sweets. Trying to hide any mishaps or problems from his mother, who is noticing anyway.
He gets sick and Dr. Owl comes to pay a visit, and finishes Tommy’s education about sugar (the cover picture). He also shares with him that treats don’t have to be bad for you, and brings him some to try. (Recipe is in the book–you can buy it at http://createspace.com/3731716).
The University School of Health, where I went to graduate school, was doing research on this forty years ago, but as typical for humans, we usually have to experience the pain of consequences before we learn. We are like Tommy, we don’t want to give up something we like, even if we find out it’s bad for us.
My daughter just called and told me that she gave the little boys chair to the baby who loves it. They were so excited about him getting books from the shelf and going and sitting in the chair, that they didn’t even mind giving it up. She said they probably thought they were going to get something better anyway.
Wouldn’t it be cool if we all were like that about giving up something we like! If we were so secure in God’s love, and so sure of His goodness, that we knew anything He asked us to give up wasn’t as good as what He will put in it’s place.