May 29th, 2014

10 Shocking Facts About Sugar From the Movie ‘Fed Up’

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Groovy Green Livin Fed Up

I just finished watching the movie Fed Up with my 13 year old.

It was eye-opening on many levels. As the credits were rolling I sat on the couch next to my son feeling angry, upset and fed up. But I also felt grateful that I was able to watch this incredible documentary with my son.

Take a peek at the preview:

Thanks to Fed Up there have been fantastic discussions in our home about the food we eat, obesity and the complexities of sugar. We now read food labels together at the market, scanning for forms of hidden sugar.

In a nutshell this film shows us how everything we thought we knew about food and exercise is dead wrong.

The movie, produced by Katie Couric, Laurie David (Oscar winning producer of An Inconvenient Truth) and Regina Scully, sets out to change the way we eat forever.

If we don’t change something soon then we are left with the fact that over 90% of all Americans will be overweight or obese in two decades. One in three kids are expected to have diabetes by mid-century. This is the first generation of children that are expected to lead shorter lives than their parents.

In 2010 flip cameras were sent out to a group of 6 kids so they could record candidly their struggles with obesity and food. The film follows these children and documents their uphill battle with the “diet and exercise” model for losing weight.

This is a heartbreaking tale of how easy it is for kids to become addicted to the wrong kind of foods at an early age.

If you thought you understood sugar before, Fed Up has new information that will forever change the way we think about sugar and food in general. 

  1.  80% of the 600,00 items sold in grocery stores have added sugar.
  2. From 1977 to 2000 it’s estimated that Americans have doubled their intake of sugar.
  3. A typical 20 ounce bottle of soda contains about 16 teaspoons of sugar from High Fructose Corn Syrup.
  4. In a recent study, 43 cocaine addicted laboratory rats were given the choice of cocaine or sugar water over a 15 day period. 40 out of 43 chose sugar.
  5. Low fat products AREN’T necessarily a healthier option and DON’T have less sugar.
  6. A calorie isn’t a calorie. For example a calorie from a candy bar is very different from a calorie in a piece of fruit or a vegetable.
  7. Sugar is sugar. It can be disguised in may ways on a food label, but it’s all sugar. Sugar is hiding everywhere: cane sugar, beet sugar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, glucose. There are over 50 names for sugar.
  8. Right now food labels list the amount of sugar in products in grams. This is basically useless since it’s very hard for us to visualize in grams. We need to fight to switch the measurement to teaspoons.
  9. In 1980 there were no cases of Type 2 Diabetes diagnosed (ages 8-19). In 2010 57,638 (ages 8-19) cases were diagnosed.  Low activity level, poor diet, and excess body weight around the waist increase your chance of getting Type 2 Diabetes.
  10. Since 1995 the government has paid over 8 billion dollars in subsidies for corn based sweeteners including High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and Crystalline Fructose which are added to our foods and beverages. Between 1970 and 1990 the consumption of HFCS increased by 1000%.

Our food system is a disaster and it isn’t going to fix itself. The problems we face are real and serious and we need to do something NOW. There’s no question that we all need to work together to save our kids. To save ourselves.

I’m angry. I’m Fed Up.

Go and see the movie, start cooking more home cooked meals, and join forces to help stop this epidemic.

The Fed Up Challenge

On May 12, the #FedUpMovie team went sugar free for 10 days. They used this action  as a first step in fighting the biggest public health crisis of our time. It’s not too late to take the pledge. Want to join in and go sugar free for 10 days? Check it out HERE.

If you’ve seen the movie I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Need more convincing to see this flick? Check out Mindful Momma’s Top Ten Reasons to See the Movie ‘Fed Up’ and Mommy Niri’s interview with Katie Couric, Laurie David, Stephanie Soechtig and Dr. Mark Hyman.

23 Responses to “10 Shocking Facts About Sugar From the Movie ‘Fed Up’”

  1. I’m FED UP to Lori! The fact that 80% of all packaged food contains sugar is really maddening. I bought dates the other day and didn’t realize until I got home that they had added sugar. Dates are sweet enough on their own – why do they need to add sugar????
    Micaela @MindfulMomma recently posted..What to Look For in a Probiotic SupplementMy Profile

  2. Lori, I’m so glad that you enjoyed (well, that’s not really the right word!) this film. Even as a full-time food organizer, I got a lot out of watching it too — and finished watching it even more fed up than I was before (didn’t know that was possible!).

    The kids’ stories are heartbreaking and I don’t think anyone could watch this film and come away still believing the myth that it’s the individual choice of kids and parents to make good decisions. Diet-related disease is an epidemic. It’s not individuals’ fault and it can’t be solved through individual behavior. We need to hold the food industry accountable for the lies it has perpetuated, for its incessant marketing to kids, and for the staggering damage it has caused. Together, we can!!!

    Also, since you’re interested in the sugar info, Dr. Robert Lustig (who was interviewed in the film) has an amazing video and book on the subject. Definitely recommend.
    The video is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM
    And the book is here: http://www.amazon.com/Fat-Chance-bitter-truth-about-ebook/dp/B0095ZMPTU/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1401383674&sr=1-1

  3. Sick to death of sugar.

  4. When I saw it in the movie theater I was the only one not drinking a soda… the irony was hard for me to miss! I thought it was a great movie, told me even more than I already knew about sugar and its effects. I feel like every family should see it.
    Leigh from Green-4-u.com recently posted..9 Ways To Not Go Broke At Whole FoodsMy Profile

  5. Very funny Leigh. I can’t imagine drinking a soda and watching the film! 16 teaspoons of sugar in that soda….

  6. I’m with you Jennifier. 80% of our products in the store contain added sugar. That’s crazy!

  7. I didn’t think it was possible to become more angry and more fed up, but like you Hanna the movie made me want to scream. It was heartbreaking listening to those kids talk about obesity and the changes they’re trying to make-but to no avail. You’re right, the food industry needs to be held accountable. It’s enough. Thanks for the links!

  8. Wow. Added sugar to dates?! That just doesn’t make sense. None of it makes sense. It’s time to do something about this!

  9. Terrible. It is amazing how vigilant we have to be with food labels. All the more reason to emphasize whole, unpackaged foods.
    Elizabeth recently posted..Getting ready for Zero Plastic Week: How do I shop for food???My Profile

  10. I haven’t seen the film, but I did the 21 Day Sugar Detox last fall and it has changed my life. We have cut out all the artificial sugar in our house and eat real food. It’s amazing!

  11. That’s incredible Holly. When you have a chance you should check out the film. It’s worth watching-even though you’re already avoiding processed sugar. I’m doing a 21 day cleanse right now and I feel wonderful. I would love for my kids to give it a try.

  12. #4 and # 9….wow! looking forward to watching this. We avoid the obvious sugars, and try to cook at home and eat “real” food… but I have a feeling there is more sugar in our diet than we realize!

  13. I’m looking forward to watching the film wit my family,so I hope the DVD is available soon.

  14. Hey Cathy, Perfect film to watch with your boys. So well done and so enlightening. I’m curious to hear what you think.

  15. […] A typical 20 ounce bottle of soda contains about 16 teaspoons of sugar from High Fructose Corn […]

  16. […] way back on sugar. Did you know that 80% of the 600,00 items sold in grocery stores have added sugar? Also, sugar can be addictive. In a study, 43 cocaine […]

  17. I work at a Food Pantry that receives discarded foods from Wal Mart, Kroger, HEB, etc including pastries and gooey desserts. After watching this movie I am going to lobby the director to throw out all those sweets instead of passing them on to the vulnerable clients.

  18. […] Since 1995 the government has paid over 8 billion dollars in subsidies for corn based sweeteners including High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and Crystalline Fructose which are added to our foods and beverages. Between 1970 and 1990 the consumption of HFCS increased by 1000%.(Sourced from http://groovygreenlivin.com/10-shocking-facts-about-sugar-from-the-movie-fed-up/) […]

  19. […] the increasing amounts of sugar in our daily diet means for America and for our […]

  20. […] Avoid processed sugar and processed foods-especially before bedtime. […]

  21. […] swallow: More than two-thirds (68.8 percent) of adults are considered to be overweight or obese and from 1977 to 2000 it’s estimated that Americans have doubled their intake of sugar. More often than not Americans are being force fed the message that it is their fault that they are […]

  22. As part of a college class, watching this movie was part of the required materials. Quite an eye opener! I had been trying to cut back on my sugar intake for months and after watching this move I am more motivated to do so. I wish all families could see this movie.

  23. […] when we know what to do? Well, as I learned more about how the food industry is fraught with misinformation, about government subsidies on unhealthy foods, about general nutrition, and about myself, I […]

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About Lori

I’m Lori Popkewitz Alper, a recovering attorney, writer, mom of three boys and the Founder of Groovy Green Livin. Join me as we work together to make the world a safer place for all.

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