The Sweetest Poison

The Sweetest Poison
When it comes to identifying the
most common poison that we
willingly use against ourselves, an
amazing feat resulting in millions of
deaths worldwide every year, there
really is no contest. The perpetrator
is as unlikely a candidate as any you
might wish to name, and its
unmasking is probably all the more
horrifying because this substance
has burrowed its way into our
civilization like a parasite, draped in
the false colors of comfort and familiarity. It’s whiter than heroin, sweeter than your
fiancée, more soluble than the National Debt, and more pernicious than nicotine
because, like a true demon, this little beauty comes in a million disguises and always
dresses like a friend.
Dr William Coda Martin was the first publicly to label sucrose a poison. Martin’s
definition came about after he determined the classical definition of a poison was
“…any substance applied to the body, which causes or may cause disease.” Refined
sugar, or sucrose, is manufactured from cane and beet extract, which has had its
proteins, vitamins and minerals removed to leave a white, crystalline substance
devoid of any nutritional content, only offering empty calories.
Sugars contained in natural, whole foods are easily metabolized by the body. Nature
has ensured that fructose, for instance, obtained when we consume fruits, has the
necessary vitamins and minerals accompanying it to allow this type of simple
monosaccharide sugar to be converted efficiently into glucose (blood sugar) and fully
metabolized by our bodies for energy. Vitamins and minerals, which accompany
fructose, are essential for these complete assimilation and conversion processes to
occur. Sucrose on the other hand, cannot metabolize completely in our bodies,
resulting in the formation of toxic metabolites such as pyruvic acid and abnormal,
unstable sugars containing five carbon atoms.
These toxic by-products interfere with the respiration of cells, preventing the latter
from acquiring sufficient oxygen to function correctly. These poisonous metabolites,
in their free-radical or oxidation format, are constantly seeking to stabilize
themselves by robbing our healthy cells of their available oxygen. This in turn
degrades the cell and the cell dies.
Extract from a report by Phillip Day as featured in Food Matters