Sugar consumption has increased 50% since 1970s in the American Diet. This is one reason why diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease has also increased. A study done by the University of Utah show that sugar is toxic to mice even in “safe” doses.
This study was an animal trial in which mice were given one of two diets. Both diets were complete and nutritious. One group of mice was given an added concentration of sugar (mixture of fructose and glucose) equivalent to adding three cans of soda pop to a healthy diet in humans. The control group of mice was given the same meal but instead of sugar cornstarch was used as added carbohydrate.
Researchers found that female mice consuming the added sugar had a two fold increase in mortality. Male mice on the added sugar produced 25% less offspring (this was measured by DNA testing). Metabolic differences between the diets were minor. Cholesterol was slighter higher in sugar fed mice, and the ability to clear glucose from blood was impaired in female mice.
One thing to keep in mind is that this study was done on mice. That doesn’t necessarily mean it can translate directly to humans. However, this does lead one to wonder how sugar affects health in humans. The proportion of sugar given to the mice, if translated to a human diet, was still within the current guidelines. It may be worth it to try decreasing the amount of processed sugar in your diet. This can be done by drinking water instead of juice/soda, or if your craving something sweet, try whole fruits instead of candy.