The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Thinking outside the box (of sugar)

I have a lot of theories, most are hare-brained and unworthy of anyone's serious attention. But, on occasion, my hare-brained theories are found to have solid foundations and quite a bit of truth underlying them.

Then I wake up.

No, that's not so.

Let's go into a second theory about artificial sweeteners and the increasing rate of diabetes. My first theory on them can be found buried in this post wherein I opine that the body needs sugar (even that "empty calorie" kind) and stores any calories it can find if it deems it is being deprived of such.

My second theory on artificial sweeteners is that they are behind the increase in diabetes. The current conventional wisdom is that the increase is tied to our obesity epidemic. Maybe... refer back to my first theory... Or maybe its because there is a slowdown in the ability of the pancreas to produce insulin and that this slowdown is triggered by a lack of sufficient sugar intake.

You see, the human body is the product of millions of years of evolution. An evolution that included what I call "diets of opportunity." Humans adapted to their environments. That means they ate what was immediately available to them. There was no huge distribution of food, you ate the vegetation around you that your body could tolerate well and thrive on, you ate the meat of animals you could easily hunt, as long as these didn't kill you or make you ill. And you needed energy so you sought foods in your surroundings that could provide it quickly and efficiently.

At some point, maybe 50 or more years ago, some mad scientists came up with the idea of artificial sweeteners because sugar was deemed "bad" for you. 

I don't mean to say that diabetes started then. That disease/condition has been around since the beginning, I am sure. I am only saying that maybe, just maybe, the advent of artificial sweeteners was the beginning of the rapid increase in diabetes.

And someone ought to look into that possibility.


Inspector Clouseau said...

I'm going to have to give this one some further thought Douglas, but I am in general agreement with you. I pretty much agree that the body adapts to environmental forces.

I have always had an usual diet. When I was in high school, college, and graduate school, I always worked in hotels and restaurants. I always had an endless supply of food since I worked all of the time. Given the option, I always chose the protein (beef, fish, chicken, etc.), and rarely the veggies and complex carbohydrates. Additionally, I drank fruit juice (to the tune of 4,000 calories a day throughout most of my life).

The most I have ever weighed at 6'0" is 180 lbs, and most times, 175 lbs. I can eat at a buffet everyday of the week and never gain an ounce. I refuse to drink diet drinks.

Now, as I have gotten older, I have become a tad more sensible about my food choices. I have significantly reduced the amount of pork I eat. I hate fried foods, and I drink vegetable juices at every opportunity I get.

Still nothing has changed. I've always attributed my consistent weight, since roughly 1969 to burning off the calories consumed. Amt in is the same amt burned, I guess.

My Father is 92 years old, and on too many medications in my opinion. I recently managed to get him off of 3 medications, and he appears to be doing better. The human body is an amazing mechanism, if we allow it to perform as designed.

I'm obviously rambling, but there may be something to your theory.

Douglas said...

My impetus for the rant was years of observation concerning recommended diets. I suspect our genetic makeup has a lot to do with our metabolic needs. Toss in our personal environment (we tend to habituate the diets of our parents) and we generally follow the body shape of one (or both) of our parents. Someone with overweight parents will have a tough time maintaining a healthy weight, for example, while you and I do not seem to suffer that problem.