Knowing what to think.


As I sit here eating an almond croissant (it’s my little brother’s birthday, so I bought pastries for breakfast), I’ve been thinking about Robert Lustig’s interview on ‘Here’s the Thing’, which I only just listened to this week.

I had, of course, heard of the issues with HFCS before, as it’s pretty much unavoidable as a topic (and foodstuff in some places), but didn’t really pay much attention out of arrogance (it’s an American problem!) and non-worry (I don’t drink soda!) and being overwhelmed (I can’t worry about everyone/everything!), though I’d occasionally read food labels to look for it.

But I was struck twice this week. I knew that low-fat foods get pumped full of sugar (or artificial sweeteners, which I avoid). I knew that British people, in general, have much bigger sweet teeth (tooths?) than I do (I read a sandwich label at Starbucks in Brum once and there was aspartame in the bread). But I didn’t know HFCS was even a thing there for some reason and that, although, because of lobbying strength and weird PR things like Pepsi funding children’s bariatric wards in hospitals, the ‘problem’ of this possibly poisonous ingredient might be worse in the States, it isn’t just an American concern.

I don’t have any grand conclusions, aside from that the croissant, from Harvest Loaf, was awfully delicious and that I’m not convinced that sugar is all bad and evil, despite Lustig’s conclusion that not a single biological process in the human body requires it. I do know that I feel terrible if I overdo it on sugary things, though, so I’ll probably save my other pastry for later.

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