Dr. Robert Lustig is waging a war on sugar. He calls sugar the culprit behind obesity, and wants the government to regulate sugar the way it does alcohol. But his ideas have stirred up controversy among his medical colleagues who say he has insufficient evidence linking sugar to obesity. Dr. Lustig joins us to talk about his new book, "Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease."
On the Prevalence of Sugar
"This is not just about high fructose corn syrup. The reason high fructose corn syrup is a problem is because it's cheap. And because it's cheap, it lowered prices on sugar, the entire world wide and that let it start being put into everything.
It started being put into hamburger buns, it started being put into hamburger meat. It started, you know, the barbecue sauce, the salad dressings, bottom line is, you can't find a processed food that doesn't have sugar. Eighty percent of all of the items in the American grocery store are now laced with added sugar, and that is very specifically because the food industry wants it to."
On How the Food Industry Has Changed the Food Supply
"Once fat was taken out of the diet, it was taken out for very [spurious] reasons, the food industry said 'Well, how are we going to make this stuff palatable? How's anyone going to eat it?' And so what they did was they substituted sugar for fat.
The perfect example is the chocolate milk that kids are drinking in the school today. I mean, which was worse, the fat or the sugar? I'll tell you -- categorically, no ifs and or buts, the sugar is way worse.