How much sugar do you consume? How much is too much sugar?

If you want to get clued up on the dangers of sugar, check out Robert Lustig, author of “Fat Chance”. Every personal trainer in London should study this expert’s work.

According to Robert Lustig (and mountains of supporting evidence) sugar, ie – sucrose and high fructose corn syrup, are the leading cause of obesity and type 2 diabetes across the world. He warns that sugar is found in the most unlikely places: “healthy” cereals, wholemeal bread, “health-food” cereal bars, organic low fat yoghurt, slimming drinks (and practically all mainstream diet food products), even baby food.

Yes! Not even baby food is free from excess sugar. This cruel trick is designed by Big Food to get as many people addicted to sugar from as early an age as possible. Lifelong customers of junk food are being created very early on in life. There’s an epidemic of obese 6 year olds, Robert Lustig points out.

Among the many problems with sugar is that it creates leptin-resistance in the body. Leptin is the ‘feel full’ hormone, which signals that you’ve eaten enough, and controls your energy balance. Sugar has the effect of suppressing this hormone, and as a result millions of people around the world over-eat without really knowing why.

Over time, the portion sizes of fizzy drinks and junk foods have grown and grown, and the amount of sugar in these portions has increased. You probably recall Jeremy Paxman interviewing a Coca Cola executive on Newsnight last year, a real eye-opener.

Robert Lustig concludes from all his research that sugar is a toxin, and needs be taxed and regulated in the same way as tobacco and alcohol, if we’re to reverse the obesity epidemic which is sweeping across the world.

Here’s a shocking statistic: there are now 371 million people in the world suffering from diabetes, the vast majority of whom suffer from type 2 diabetes, a wholly preventable (and reversible) disease caused by eating too much sugar and refined junk food.

Here’s another shocking statistics: in 2001 there were 6 million obese kids in the States. By 2013 this figure had risen to 20 million, a public health crisis that the junk food industry is trying hard to deny.

The junk food industry insists that there is no link between sugar consumption and obesity. Don’t believe them! They’re not interested in your health or well-being, they’re interested only in profits. Would a drug dealer advise his customers to stop taking drugs? No!

If you want to gain more insight into the effects of sugar, see Robert Lustig’s YouTube videos. There are three I recommend in particular:

Sugar: The Bitter Truth (University of California Television: UCTV). This 90 minute lecture has clocked up over 5 million views and over 41,000 likes.

Sugar: The Elephant in the Kitchen (155,000 views for this 22 minute video)

The 2013 Dolan Lecture: Robert Lustig: Healthy Wealthy and Wise? The Consequences of the American Diet (1 hour 40 minute lecture).

Here’s a quick action plan for you and everyone you care about: Go into the kitchen, grab one of those big black bin liners (ideally the thick plastic ones which don’t easily rip), and start filling it with all the crap in your cupboards: sugary breakfast cereals, cakes, biscuits, fizzy drinks, sugary cereal bars, sweets, and ready-meals. Then take it out to the trash and bin it.

Now go to the supermarket and buy salmon fillets, sirloin steaks, free range eggs, cans of tuna, sweet potatoes, bulgar wheat, lentils, kidney beans, oranges, spinach, broccoli, onions, carrots, and as many other vegetables as you can lay your hands on.

Dominic Londesborough is a personal trainer in London UK with over a decade of experience, who also provides online nutrition coaching to help people eat healthily and get their lives back.