‘Sceptical nutritionist’ provides balance to discussion on sugar

Monday 3 October 2016

Dr. Bill Shrapnel, Australia’s self-proclaimed ‘sceptical nutritionist’, is in New Zealand this week to speak at the New Zealand Beverage Council’s annual conference in Taupo.

Dr. Shrapnel says that there is an increasing disconnect between what nutrition science has to say about sugar in our diets and “near-hysterical comments about sugar in mainstream and social media”.

“In the world of science, the low-fat diet has collapsed as the preferred model for healthy eating. Carbohydrate (refined starch – which has a similar effect to sugar), which was previously seen as the ideal replacement for fat, is suddenly less desirable than previously thought.

“This shift in the science has provided various players with opportunities to push their interests, and positioning sugar as ‘toxic’ (an absurd claim) is part of the strategy,” he says.

Dr. Shrapnel goes on to say that the failure of the ‘eat-less-fat’ message to successfully address the obesity epidemic has left public health nutritionists grasping at straws. “Having spent the last 20 years beating up the food industry over fat, left-leaning public health nutritionists have needed to identify a new dietary ‘villain’ to take the place of fat. Sugar is it.”

Dr. Shrapnel will join a diverse line-up of speakers over the course of the two-day conference. Topics to be discussed include intellectual property rights, packaging innovation, the challenges facing the bottled water industry, organics claims for beverages and the ‘science behind achieving everything’ by Auckland University’s ‘Nanogirl’ Dr Michelle Dickinson.

The ‘Partners in Progress’ conference will be held at the Wairakei Resort from 4 – 6 October in Taupo.

For more information, contact:

Emma Morrison
Senior Account Director
Wright Communications Limited

Mobile:  64 21 916 647

© The New Zealand Beverage Council (Inc.), 2016.

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