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The Case Against Sugar Paperback – 5 Jan 2017

4.7 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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  • Why We Get Fat: And What to Do about It (Vintage)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Portobello Books Ltd (5 Jan. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846276373
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846276378
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,509 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

'Hard-hitting and important... you will find yourself looking at the packet of golden caster sugar in your cupboard and the elderflower cordial in your fridge with new suspicion, if not loathing' -- Bee Wilson, Sunday Times

'Like a terrier with a bone, [Taubes] won't let purveyors of this bankrupt diet paradigm get away with a bit of pragmatic sugar reduction tokenism. In order to firmly hammer the nails in the coffin of the case of sugar, he sets out to nail the lie on which it is predicated: that the tidal wave of obesity and type 2 diabetes sweeping the western world is caused by overconsumption and sedentary behaviour... Taubes isn't the only person to challenge the facile idea that we get fat simply because we consume more calories than we expend, but his clear and persuasive argument that obesity is a hormonal disorder, switched on by sugar, is one that urgently needs wider airing' -- Observer

'A devastating critique of the way the sugar industry has shaped nutritional science in its favour for more than a century' -- Financial Times

'Compelling... Perhaps at long last, sugar is getting its just desserts' --Economist

'Taubes's writing is both inflammatory and copiously researched. It is also well-timed... Hard-charging (and I'll add game-changing' -- New York Times

'[A] blitz of a book... Mr Taubes's argument is so persuasive that, after reading The Case Against Sugar, this functioning chocoholic cut out the Snacking Bar and stopped eating cakes and white bread.. The Case Against Sugar should be a powerful weapon against future misinformation' -- Eugenia Bone, Wall Street Journal

'A book stuffed with scientific detail... as a rallying call for long-term change, it's very hard to ignore' -- Literary Review

'Gary Taubes is the best writer on nutrition science in the world. Anyone seeking to understand the role of sugar in our diets should read this book' --Ian Leslie, author of Curious

'Taubes's prose is perfectly judged, as compelling as a slow-motion car crash... Can Taubes's expertly written and disturbing book change [the] culture?... Full marks - and a big red lollipop - for making a valiant attempt' -- New Statesman

'An eye-opening read... Sobering [and] thought-provoking, not least for revealing how society has been led down a blind alley on matters of healthy eating' --Delicious Magazine

About the Author

GARY TAUBES is the co-founder of the Nutrition Science Initiative and the author of Why We Get Fat and The Diet Delusion. An award-winning science and health journalist, his writing has appeared in Discover, Science, the New York Times Magazine, the Atlantic, Nature and the British Journal of Medicine. He has received three Science in Society Journalism Awards from the National Association of Science Writers and is the recipient of a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator Award in Health Policy Research. He lives in Oakland, California.


Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I've read other stuff by Taubes, notably the Diet Delusion which was perhaps the best book I've ever read on why the general public is so confused over what they should eat to be healthy. They have been systematically lied to for decades by the food industry and scientists alike (John Yudkin a notable exception). The Case Against Sugar is not in the same category but still worth a read. In essence none of us should be blase about consuming the "white stuff"; increased consumption, especially in the 20th Century is almost certainly a principal cause of the significant increases in cases of type 2 diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease and perhaps even various cancers and dementia. I've looked at this from a variety of angles (especially the biochemistry) and am convinced that consuming refined sugar really isn't something we should do. And don't think you can exercise your way out of the problem. In essence stick to "natural sources" of sugar such as fruit and veg as these typically come prepackaged with water and fibre, thus slowing down the rate at which the liver/pancreas has to respond to increases in blood glucose levels. And never ever believe
the food industry cares a fig about your long term wellbeing. No surprise there I suppose.
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‘Medicine is mostly taught untethered from its history,’ asserts Gary Taubes at the beginning of this book. ‘Students are taught what to believe, but not always the evidence on which their beliefs are based.’
This book is a much needed history of sugar. I can think of nowhere else where failure to look at the evidence on which medical beliefs are based has had, and continues to have, such tragic consequences.

The leading authority who dominated the teaching about diabetes during the twentieth and into the twenty-first century was a dedicated doctor called Elliott Joslin. His textbook, ‘The Treatment of Diabetes Mellitus was first published in 1916. Revered as a bible, its most recent edition appeared in 2005, forty-three years after his death. Joslin argued that fats, and not sugar, were the cause of diabetes. This belief was supported by Harold Himsworth, a very influential diabetes researcher based in London, who in 1931 proposed that a diet rich in carbohydrate should be recommended to diabetics. Both Joslin and Himsworth pointed to Japan as a country where the diet was rich in carbohydrate and low in fat, and where there was very little diabetes. What both men ignored was that sugar consumption in Japan at that time was comparable to that in England and America in the nineteenth century, when diabetes was very rare. They both assumed that sugar and other carbohydrates were equivalent in their effects on the human body.

Sugar (sucrose) is formed in plants by the condensation of two simpler sugars – glucose and fructose. Glucose, the molecule into which starches are digested, is used to provide energy. Any surplus is converted, in the liver and muscles, to glycogen (‘animal starch’) for storage until needed.
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Gary Taubes is a clever,courageous and brilliant writer. Everything he has written is worthy of serious consideration. Why this man has not been awarded a Nobel Prize for his services to science is a scource of amazement to me. He should be recognised and acknowledged for the pure and unbiased scientist that he is. I will continue to read everything that he publishes.
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Again Gary Taubes exposes the global conspiracy to poison the human race in the name of profit and greed. Ignore the calories are calories falsehoods and read a considered, well investigated piece of scientific writing.
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A great book which goes through a wide range of research to show the link between sugar and common diseases. It would have been good to see more links between carbs and diseases too, with advice on what next...!
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Having also read Gary's "Why we Get Fat..." and "Diet Delusion" (entitled "Good Calories Bad Calories" in the States), ordering his latest book "The Case against Sugar" was a no brainer. The book fulfilled my expectations in the usual respects as many other reviewers will attest to the quality of his work. However Gary's closing commentary in his "Epilogue" chapter left me somewhat bewildered where a simple comparison is made between stopping smoking and stopping consuming sugar. This seemed to put the responsibility firmly in the lap of the 'consumer' where clearly, Gary's main objective has always appeared to me to be the exposure that we have all been subjected to of misinformation, lies and propaganda for the sake of money making industry giants. This is avidly demonstrated on the reverse of the front cover in the following extract...
"More than half a billion adults and 40 million children on the planet are obese.Diabetes is a worldwide epidemic. Evidence increasingly shows that these illnesses are linked to the other major Western diseases: hypertension, heart disease, even alzheimer's and cancer, and that, shockingly, sugar is likely the single root cause. Yet the nutritional advice we receive from public health bodies is muddled, out of date, and frequently contradictory, and in many quarters still promotes the unproven hypothesis that fats are the greatest evil."
The extract continues "With expert advice and compelling storytelling, Gary Taubes investigates......." - and I would never disagree! I just get the feeling that Gary's concluding statement was hurried and missing his main objective. People will only stop using sugar when they are properly informed of the way they have been totally misled.
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