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Sugar Backlash

Your past can come back to haunt you—at least when it comes to a sweet tooth.

Sugary diets lead to obesity

A dietary preference for sugary foods decades ago could be contributing to the present-day obesity crisis, says research published in the journal Economics and Human Biology. Investigators from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, used national obesity data collected since 1990 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and compared it with annual sugar consumption rates since 1970. They found evidence that dietary habits of children up to four decades ago—specifically, high intakes of added sugars—could be contributing to the ever-increasing rates of obesity today. The apparent temporal delay between high sugar consumption and obesity drives home the point that healthy eating habits need to be stressed from the get-go.

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Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD, is a James Beard Award–winning food journalist, dietitian and author of the cookbook Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sport + Adventure (VeloPress 2016). He has written for dozens of magazines, including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Shape, Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness.

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