Sugar regulations not so sweet

The U.S. should not regulate sugars like it does cigarettes and alcohol.

Daily Editorial Board

ItâÄôs no question that toxic sugars are harmful to the health of Americans; the question is how best to handle this problem as a nation. The Huffington  Post reported last week that three leading obesity researchers suggested the U.S. start regulating sugar like alcohol, but doing so is not the answer.
The researchers find that added sugars in any form, both sucrose and high-fructose corn syrup, are just as dangerous to our health as substances like alcohol or tobacco. While itâÄôs accepted for tobacco and alcohol to be regulated, this is a different case. Regulation of sugar brings up a host of different problems to take the place of the ones it solves and reduces our freedom of choice.
One of the leaders in the movement to regulate sugar, pediatric endocrinologist Robert Lustig, found that our bodies process toxic sugars similarly to the way we process alcohol. While this is alarming, there are much more efficient solutions.
First of all, Americans must assume the responsibility of making better decisions in their diets. We all have the freedom of choice, so instead of fast food or cheap processed foods, we should choose healthier meals that include fruits, vegetables and whole-grain foods.
To make those decisions easier, healthy foods should be less expensive. Some of our nationâÄôs health problems exist because people simply buy the cheapest option instead of the healthiest. The price of healthy and organic foods can be lowered through tax incentives or government support âÄî these measures will pay for themselves in health-care savings.
People should consider healthy options more seriously, because the risks of not paying attention to oneâÄôs diet are deadly with time.