May 2, 2017

Kellogg's Covers Up Health Crisis in Sugar

While I admit that I have not eaten Kellogg's cereals for over 50 years, this article about Kellogg was not a total surprise as they have been exposed before by sponsoring foods and having the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) promote some of their foods as healthy.

While Kellogg's is the world's leading cereal manufacturer, it has spent millions on research to counter claims that its sugar-laden products are fueling the obesity crisis.

Kellogg’s has been attacked for putting more sugar in some breakfast cereals than is found in cakes, donuts and ice cream. A bowl of Crunchy Nut cereal can contain more than half the recommended maximum intake of added sugar for a six-year-old.

Now an investigation has established that Kellogg’s helped fund a report, published in a medical journal in December, attacking the British government’s recommendations to cut sugar intake. It also funded studies suggesting eating cereals may help children stay at a healthy weight.
Simon Capewell, a founder of Action on Sugar and professor in public health and policy at Britain’s Liverpool University, called on Kellogg’s to publish a list of the scientists and research organizations to which it pays fees and research grants. Coca-Cola published such a list in 2015 after a row over how its research funding influenced public health debate.

They are funding scientists and organizations to undermine the established evidence that eating too much sugar is harmful,” Professor Capewell said.

One of the food-research organizations funded by Kellogg’s is the International Life Sciences Institute. Last year it funded­ research in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine that said the advice to cut sugar by Public Health England and other bodies such as the World Health Organization could not be trusted.

The study, which claimed official guidance to cut sugar was based on “low-quality evidence”, stated it had been funded by an ILSI technical committee. Only by searching elsewhere for a list of committee members did it become clear that this comprised 15 food firms, including Kellogg’s, Coca-Cola and Tate & Lyle.

In 2013, Kellogg’s funded British research that concluded “regular consumption of breakfast cereals” might help children stay slimmer.
The study, published in the journal Obesity Facts, relied on evidence from 14 studies. Seven were funded by Kellogg’s and five were funded by the cereal company General Mills. Margaret Ashwell, a consultant to the food industry and one of the auth­ors of the study, said all interests had been correctly disclosed.

Terence Kealey, a former vice-chancellor at Buckingham University and author of Breakfast Is a Dangerous Meal, warned last month that the scientific community had “fooled itself” about the benefits of breakfast.

Kellogg has said it was committed to “slowly reducing sugar”. A spokesperson said: “As a low-calorie, grain-based food choice we believe cereals have a role to play in tackling obesity. We follow appropriate guidelines for transparency and disclosure.”

If only this were, correct!

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