Saturday, February 22, 2014

Mice and Sugar, What Could Be Better?

For the rodents on the sweetened diet, sugar accounted for 25 percent of their total calorie intake. Up to a quarter of Americans consume that proportion of sugar as part of their diets. Previous studies that found harmful effects of sugar consumption tended to use unusually high amounts.
“[Our findings] set a new standard for caution even at low doses of added sugar,” senior author and biologist Wayne K. Potts said.
About 80 percent of substances that are toxic in mice are toxic for people as well, said Potts, so it is likely that the effects of extra sugar could be similar in humans.
The researchers first fed 156 animals either sweetened or normal diets for 26 weeks. They then used a novel lab setup: room-sized mouse barns where the animals could roam free instead of being confined in cages. The goal was to mimic the natural environment.
For me this is a pretty good example of confirmation bias - since I'm already a believer that sugar will kill you (at a toxic dose, it will, although the amount that makes sugar toxic is not not known for sure).  But you have to ask yourself - if sugary food can kill mice in just 26 weeks, who could possibly argue with science?
It is interesting to see the flurry of furry mice being exposed to sugar now, vice fat, since hating fat has become slightly passé.

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