Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Book - Suicide by Sugar: A Startling Look at Our #1 National Addiction

The title is catching, I'll give it that, however, Suicide by Sugar: A Startling Look at Our #1 National Addiction by Nancy Appleton, PhD did not quite live up to its title. The works I've read by Michael Pollan are far more gripping and vivid, causing a reader to recoil from any thought of sugar, especially HFCS. However, Appleton's book is informative, easy to read, and offers suggestions on reducing the sugar you consume. And given that, according to her research, the average American consumes 142 pounds of sugar a year, of which 74 pounds (more than half) is from added sugar, it is easy to understand that cutting back on sugar may be a good thing.

So, there you have it, this frugal blogger is trying to cut back on sugar. What does that have to do with being frugal? First, added sugars abound in processed foods, and processed foods cost a fair amount. Second, too much sugar translates into more pounds. Motivated by the fact we'll be purchasing our own health insurance in about a year (currently using COBRA), the fewer pounds we list on the application the lower our premium will be. And that can add up quickly.

Unlike Appleton, I do not plan to eliminate sugar completely from my diet. I'm taking a moderate approach. First, noting when sugar is in an item. Ketchup for example, one may not realize that it contains sugar. Second, opting to forego added sugar items. This means I'll use mustard (sugar free) instead of ketchup. Third, minimizing the number of processed, and thus sugar laden, items in my grocery cart. My goal? Increase healthy food consumption, decrease my grocery bill, drop the pounds put on after my children arrived (too many days of grabbing high energy food, meaning sugary carbs), and getting a lower health care premium next year.

Suggestions and motivation are welcomed!

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