Free Hook

By Dean L. Jones

Food is the most common item used to celebrate anything.  This week, the owners of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Crème continued their 35-year celebration spreading their peace, love and ice crème campaign by offering Free Cone Day.  The free sugar was also provided to consumers of L.A.’s Sprinkles, who gave away free cupcakes to every customer at each store location to celebrate the chain’s 10th anniversary.

Another company giving away sugary desserts is KFC, offering a free red velvet cake with the purchase of a 10-piece (or larger) family meal item.  In all likelihood, there is no real consideration in any of these free giveaways as to the health dangers processed sugar places on the body.  In saying thank you to loyal (addicted) customers, such consumers should be mindful that too much sugar can make that free product pay dearly.

McDonald’s restaurants in Southern California have gone back to employing the addictive sugar by offering their own Bundt cakes and petite pastries, drizzled with cream cheese icing.  It is skeptically coincidental that McDonald’s would introduce new sugary-filled menu items when reported store sales are shown on the decline.  Hence, there is nothing better to attract customers with than sweet foodstuff, which is proven to hook eaters to make repetitive purchases.

Major food manufacturers are pressured to respond with appropriate action to outcries from public health advocates to minimize the exposure to this toxic substance called processed sugar.  Such as, this month Nestlé’s Nesquik product reduced processed sugar in its powder formulas by 15% in original chocolate powder and 27% in strawberry powder.  Now, their newly reformulated powders will have 10.6 grams of added sugar per two-tablespoon servings.  Although, please read the label as the amount for an 8-ounce serving is actually 22-grams of sugar (5½ teaspoons).

At this time of year with the heat rising, consuming too much processed sugar can easily dehydrate you if it gets to very high levels in your blood.  The general reason is that when the kidney organs start producing more urine to try to eliminate the processed sugar too much fluid is eliminated, resulting in possible dehydration.

Symptoms of dehydration include dry mouth, decreased urination, lethargy, low blood pressure, rapid pulse, loss of skin elasticity and shock.  Drinking small amounts of fluid may be sufficient if you have mild dehydration, but severe dehydration can cause seizures, brain damage and even death.

Our bodies are 75% water, making drinking more water to stay hydrated paramount.  Dehydration can be a sign of adrenal fatigue.  Some of the symptoms include cravings for sugar, cravings for salt on food when you eat, feel dehydrated and thirsty and require plenty of water, difficulty falling asleep at night, sleep lightly or wake early or often, difficulty relaxing, nervous, anxious or hyperactive, and general exhaustion.  That’s why, if at all possible live SugarAlert!
Dean Jones is an Ethics Advocate, Southland Partnership Corporation (a public benefit organization), contributing his view on certain aspects of foodstuff.