An Australian man, Damon Gameau who had healthy dietary habits decided for the purpose of an experiment to increase his sugar intake. If you are not eating sweets, that does not mean that you are not eating life-threatening amounts of sugar on a daily basis.
Here is his story:
Same as every single man in his 30s, I had really bad habits. I smoked a whole cigarette pack every day, and speaking of diet, I did not pay much attention to the food I ate.
But, similar to what happens to many men, I met a beautiful woman and to impress her, I was pretending to be interested in things I had no idea about. Healthy diet, kale and cucumber smoothies, avocado and breads with chia seeds – these became a crucial part of my life.
Before the time I started eating healthy, I consumed about 30 teaspoons of sugar a day. I later reduced this amount to almost a zero.
After two months people started noticing some positive changes in my appearance -- my skin became clearer, my under eye bags were gone, same as my belly.
Three years later, I got an offer to make a short movie, and taking into consideration that the damage caused by sugar was a top issue at that time, I came up with an idea to make a documentary that will include the same problem. People are usually divided when it comes to sugar. Some say that sugar is a poison and it should be eliminated from our diets, and others believe that it is an essential part of diet. This is why I decided to conduct a small experiment.
I started consuming 40 teaspoons of sugar additionally, through the food we all eat, juices, sweets and similar products. I organized a team of doctors that were supposed to follow any changes in my body within 60 days. There was nothing left of my healthy lifestyle, all in service of this documentary. I planned to document the results of my experiment and reveal them to the world in this documentary.
Before we started shooting, I cut off sweets from my diet. Did you know that barbecue sauce and sweet chili sauce have more sugar than chocolate syrup? So, the sugar I ate was mostly from products like grains, yoghurt and sport drinks. I did not change the rest of my habits in order to provide more accurate results.
At the beginning, not many people were interested in my documentary, but then something strange happened and it was chaos. In just 12 days, I gained 7 pounds, and in 18 days I was diagnosed with fatty liver.
Our liver converts excess sugar into fat, which is why many Americans have a fatty liver. This fact was the basis of our documentary.
I called my producer and told him the results, so the movie was given a different dimension. The movie was made to attract the attention of both children and elderly, and that was our main purpose – to raise people’s awareness and send a message to those who need it most.
By the end of the experiment I gained 18 pounds, I had a higher risk of developing diabetes type 2, I had a fatty liver, an increased risk of heart disease and I got an extra 4 inches of fat on my waist.
Sugar is one of the deadliest threats and it is a silent killer. It activates the same center in the brain as cocaine and sex, which is why people are addicted to unhealthy dietary habits. That Sugar Film was be released in Australian movie theaters in February 2015