Why All Calories Are Not Created Equal: Dr. Robert Lustig on the Science of Sugar

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Dr. Robert Lustig has become famous for his youtube video Sugar: The Bitter Truth (below). The 90 minute video has been watched over 4 million times. He’s also the author of Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity and Disease. He’s also prominently featured in the new documentary Fed Up, a powerful film about America’s obesity epidemic directed by Stephanie Soechtig and co-produced by Katie Couric and Laurie David.

According to Dr. Lustig, it’s not calories alone, but sugar and refined carbohydrates (i.e. processed food) that is driving the obesity epidemic. Contrary to popular belief, “A calorie,” he says, “is not a calorie.” In the following conversation he describes the difference between ingesting 160 calories of almonds and 160 calories of soda. Plus, he discusses why there is no recommended daily allowance of sugar on nutrition labels and what exactly “made with whole grains” means on the back of your cereal box.