Letter to the Editor

Liquid sugar

Retired chief of cardiology of the Kaiser Richmond Medical Center, Richmond, Calif.November 20, 2013 

The Tribune Editorial Board missed the point in refuting state Sen. Bill Monning’s soda tax bill (SB 622). This legislation could have a definite positive impact on California’s obesity crisis.

Liquid sugar is the worst culprit in the battle against obesity. More than 40 percent of the additional calories we have been consuming come from sugary drinks. That’s enough to explain the obesity epidemic.

For 150,000 years, we quenched our thirst with water. That’s what our bodies expect. When we add 15 teaspoons of sugar, as we do when we drink a soda, we override our long-evolved system.

The sugar causes the pancreas and liver to overwork. The pancreas poops out. Diabetes follows with risks of amputation, blindness, dialysis, heart attacks and strokes.

The liver turns the sugar into unhealthy fats, some of which clog up the heart’s arteries causing heart attacks.

That’s why the American Heart Association reaffirmed its support for soda taxes: “Mexico’s effort provides an excellent starting point, but we need U.S. states and communities to enact the tax as well.”

The Tribune is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service