A new investigation reveals the sugar industry successfully blamed fat for heart disease using skewed science, when sugar is the main culprit. This corporate deceit triggered more than 50 years of a nutritional “low-fat” policy that helped make Americans the fattest and most chronically ill population on the planet, thanks to diets high in sugars and processed carbohydrates. The blood sugar instability this diet causes played a role in the rise of autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism.
Using tactics similar to those of the tobacco industry, the sugar industry funded research that downplayed the role of sugar consumption in raising levels of fat in the blood and did not disclose findings that linked sugar with heart disease.
The industry’s own animal studies showed high-sugar diets increased triglyceride levels, thus raising the risk of heart attack and stroke, and also increased the risk of bladder cancer. They pulled the plug on the study before it could be completed.
The same mechanisms that cause heart disease and other disorders also raise the risk of autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism. This is because a high-sugar diet causes chronic inflammation.
The Washington DC-based Sugar Association said the study was stopped because it was over budget and coincided with restructuring of the Sugar Research Foundation. It also said scientific recommendations to limit sugar to no more than 10 percent of daily calories are “out of bounds.”
Had the study been completed, it could have led to further research and policies that put the welfare of American citizens — not the sugar and processed food industries — first. This could have saved millions of Americans and their families from the heartbreak and devastation of sugar-related diseases such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and increased risk of autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism.
Additionally, healthy fats are vital to brain function; the brain is made predominantly of fat. People with Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism have an increased risk of brain degeneration and brain disorders and need to pay careful attention to brain nutrition.
Another telling example in a 2018 European study shows a significant correlation between the amount of processed foods people keep in their homes and obesity and related diseases. Though Americans and Europeans have, surprisingly, eaten roughly the same number of calories over the decades, significantly more Americans than Europeans are obese and ill thanks to corrupt marketing and nutritional policy.
While the policies of the last several decades have steadily made Americans fatter and sicker, including skyrocketing rates of Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, they have also been fuel for the multi-billion-dollar weight loss industry. Sugar content simply replaced fat calories in fat-free foods dominating the shelves.
The trouble with foods high in sugar and processed carbs (which are essentially sugar once ingested) is not only do they make people fatter, but they also trigger a hormonal cascade that increases sugar cravings while turning off the satiety hormones so that one feels constantly hungry. Diets have been shown to fail most people in sustained weight loss and even trigger eating disorders.
The low-fat, high-carb diet sends you on a downward spiral that ends with a foundation for chronic disease based on high inflammation, accelerated brain degeneration, and metabolic imbalances. This is a situation that primes the immune system to fall prey to an autoimmune disease such as Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism.
In functional medicine, we often see significantly ameliorated or even reversed simply by stabilizing blood sugar, eliminating inflammatory foods, addressing chronic infection, repairing gut health, and adopting a whole foods diet.
Ask my office for advice on the best diet for your Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism.