A year ago, a series of Cosmopolitan covers featuring obese women with the title “It’s Healthy!” sparked public debate.
If you go through this bold statement through the basic mechanics of real common sense, you will come to the expected conclusion that this is a rich lie. But if you want to get behind the legitimate argument of a nutrition and healthy eating professional, you’ll ask Czech pharmacists, dietitians and the author of the very personal health book, Margit Slimáková.
“I don’t like it, I think we’re exaggerating with the overcorrection,” says Slimáková on the cover of Cosmopolitan. “On the one hand, I try very hard to defend overweight people – I disagree that they are lazy and stupid. We also eat unhealthily under the influence of hormones, parameters genetics, stress and other environmental influences. At the same time, however, things have to be named honestly, and the truth is that obesity is a health issue.”
For some it’s easier to keep a slim line, for others it’s harder. “But we have to strive for a healthy organism – and such things undermine that effort,” says the dietitian. “It’s not about defaming anyone. It’s not about pretending there isn’t an obvious health issue.”
And if we admit that obesity is a health problem, we can freely move on to pouring clean (and especially dry) wine on the fact that sugar doesn’t make people Adonis either.
“Sugar is a problem in all its forms,” replies Margit Slimáková when asked if cane sugar is really healthier than white sugar.
“The vast majority of sugars, sweeteners and sweets contain the same thing: sucrose, glucose, fructose.” None of this contributes to human health. “Sugar is always a question of quantity,” adds the dietitian. “The more we attune ourselves, the more we learn to demand an abnormally sweet taste.”
In other words, we’re making a solid habit of staying in the sugar loaf kingdom.
The risks of sugar are obvious. First of all, these are dental caries – they are clearly caused by the consumption of sugar. Then there are the risks caused by insulin resistance. It’s a very insidious situation, especially because you don’t need to know about it for many years. Nothing hurts, and since the hormone level in surgeries isn’t routinely checked, you don’t even know it.
“So you’ve worked for many years to store fat in your adipose tissue with all kinds of snacks and treats — and it’s only a matter of time before your insulin stops working properly,” says Slimáková. “The whole cascade of building insulin resistance leads to metabolic syndrome, i.e. heart and vascular disease – but it’s already being said that Alzheimer’s is actually type 3 diabetes. “
So we have obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease – all of which are associated with insulin resistance today. Which in turn is linked to our sugar intake.
“Sugar itself as a sweetener bothers each of us,” says Margit Slimáková. That doesn’t mean that all carbs are completely bogus yet. “Carbohydrates in the form of oatmeal or yeast bread can be an integral part of a healthy diet — for some people,” he says.
It’s all about reducing the carbohydrate load that we consume in terrible amounts today – usually around 250-350 grams per day. “Every person does something a little different, but most of us will benefit from not overeating with these substances,” says Slimáková. In other words, whether you are Peter or Paul, when you spit out cookies and buns, it will only benefit you.
And sweet foods can be made without sugar after all – try apple strudel with raisins.
But where does the strange thing come from that not only do we not accompany the world sugar, but there are still many tendencies to include it in a diet that is supposedly not on the head at all?
According to Margit Slimáková, it has its roots in the 1970s, at a time of hysterical anti-fat campaigning. “At the time, there was discussion about whether the main cause of heart and vascular disease was fat or sugar,” he says. “But then the food industry and politics got involved and it was decided that fat was risky; the dangers of sugar were ignored or downplayed.”
Health became a matter of business and politics, detached from science and reality – and the era of the push for a low-fat, low-calorie diet that didn’t address sugar at all began. . “It wasn’t until later that better studies showed that fat wasn’t nearly as problematic as sugar.”
From this mindset, which has long been refuted, the so-called food pyramid still persists to this day, according to which it is right to fill the human body with a certain ratio of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, where – wonder of the world – carbohydrates are always the base.
“In my opinion, this is the biggest nutritional mistake we have,” says Slimáková, “the existence of the only correct nutrition expressed by the pyramid.” Carbohydrates are not an essential nutrient.
Alternative diets such as keto, paleo, or carnivore, which on the other hand have minimal carb intake, are hard to bite into the mainstream.
Margit Slimáková has two explanations for the continued emancipation of refuted opinions. “On the one hand, many people who recommended margarines, minimized sugar and pushed for fat reduction built a career here on this low-fat diet. Then there are the interest groups who have a business built on highly industrially processed products, generally based on sugars.
So how do you deal with sugar intake? The conversation with dietitian Margit Slimáková shows a pretty clear and solid defense. Eat real food, not highly processed foods full of carbohydrates and sugars.
If you are used to sweets, this will be a challenge: by continuing to eat sugar, you are subjected to a strategy in which kindness artificially increases your feeling of happiness. But look at it doing it for your tomorrow self. And for myself in five or thirty years.
Then you won’t have to rub sugar around your mouth saying obesity is “healthy”.