Treat sugar like wine?

UCSF researchers offer one solution to obesity pandemic

A team of University of California, San Francisco researchers has released a report suggesting sugar should be regulated like alcohol or tobacco in order to curb the American obesity pandemic.

The report suggests that sugar contributes to noncommunicable diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer that account for 35 million deaths a year worldwide and 75 percent of U.S. health-care spending, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. The report, which was published in the Feb. 2 issue of Nature magazine, argues that sugar’s pervasiveness in the American diet, its toxicity and potential for abuse would justify regulation using the model of controlled access and taxation currently in place for tobacco and alcohol.

The study’s authors noted the public must stop considering sugar just “empty calories.” At the level of consumption common to many Americans, sugar can change the metabolism, raise blood pressure, alter the signaling or hormones and damage the liver