The Canadian Heart Foundation comes down hard on Sugar

In June this year that Canadian Heart & Stroke Foundation (the Canadian HSF) killed off its ‘Health Check Program.’  Just like the Australian Heart Foundation’s ‘Tick Program’, the HSF Check had been plumbing new lows in prostituting health advice to the interests of the food industry.

Perhaps it was when it took money to put a ‘Check’ on Slush Puppies or maybe it was when they endorsed a children’s snack that was 80% sugar.  Maybe it was just the combined weight of the evidence against sugar, so neatly summarised by the World Health Organisation in January.  But whatever the cause, eventually they did the right thing and said no to Food Industry money.

Now that the interests of their sponsors count for naught, they have released a powerful position statement on sugar.  In a single document they have catapulted themselves from handmaiden of the processed food industry to the world leader in health policy.  They have looked at the evidence and made a persuasive case for immediate action on sugar.

Pay attention Australian Heart Foundation they are making you look like the fools that you are.

In Canada In Australia
No less than 17 major studies are cited in support of a statement that sugar is associated with:

  • heart disease,
  • stroke,
  • obesity,
  • diabetes,
  • high blood cholesterol,
  • cancer and
  • tooth decay.
“sugar … [is] only important in relation to [tooth decay]. … There is no scientific consensus that sugar … causes heart disease.”
Sugar consumption (from all sources) should be no more than 10% (12 teaspoons per day – less than half current Canadian consumption) and preferably less than 5% (6 teaspoons).  “Rather than making choices based on sugar content alone see what else a food offers nutritionally.”
Food labelling needs to be significantly improved to show sugar content properly [sound of crickets]
The Government should:

  • act to reduce the amount of sugar in the food supply
  • tax soft drinks
  • support education programs aimed at reducing sugar
  • restrict marketing to children
  • avoid partnerships with producers of high sugar foods
  • Ban the sale of sugary drinks in hospitals and schools
  • Educate parents on how to avoid sugar in the lunch-box
[more crickets]
The Heart Foundation recommends people avoid packaged and prepared food. The Heart Foundation earns money from the sale of packaged food where sugar is a primary ingredient in the product.


Join the discussion 7 Comments

  • Michelle says:

    This is fantastic news!!!!

  • Nads says:

    What a cracker!

  • Mary Stirling says:

    Absolutely fantastic news. Thank goodness we are beginning to hear some sense from a Heart Foundation at last.!!! Lets hope Australia can follow the lead in the not too distant future!!!

  • stephanie says:

    yeah let’s see how long that takes- sugar is a massive industry here in Australia. We grow mountains of it, I bet the industry pressure would be huge.

  • […] government must be using a different definition of healthy to the World Health Organisation, the Canadian Heart Association and the British Medical Association, (to name just a few), because I doubt any of them would be […]

  • Jennifer Walker says:

    What a great step forward! Wake up call for the Australian Heart Foundation – start paying attention to the scientific research on the impact of sugar and stop counting your bottom line (profiting from processed foods!)

  • Pervez says:

    Outstanding !
    Finally at least one Heart Foundation got the cojones to tell it like it truly is !!
    Australian HF … Absolute waste of time

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