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Happy Friday!

Of course I know that sugar is bad for you. I just hadn’t realised quite how bad it was until I heard the Freakonomics podcast on sugar, which goes into detail about how it affects your body medically, how it is as addictive as alcohol and how sugar is one of the worst crops environmentally.

I ended up listening to the podcast three times to make sure the information was really going to stick with me.

In the discussion, Robert Lustig, the American paediatric endocrinologist who has written a book on the subject of sugar, suggests that it should be considered an addictive substance, maybe even a toxic substance. Hearing Dr Lustig and other guests explain the ramifications of having high levels of sugar in our diets was fascinating, and convinced me that sugar usage in the food industry definitely needs to be re-evaluated.

Easy to say, much harder to do. Reducing daily sugar intake sounds incredibly logical, even essential, given the health risks (diabetes, heart disease, depression), as well as the growing environmental impact of sugar farming. The whole idea becomes a lot trickier however when it’s translated into our everyday and we have to cut way back on baking and sweet treats, stop buying jarred sauces and condiments, avoid most supermarket bread, and most importantly, put back the 6 pack of soda.

The one thing missing from the podcast, perhaps, was a short section on sugar alternatives and whether any of them are any healthier and/or more sustainable.

At the end, the interviewer Stephen J. Dubner, makes sure to ask the guests how often they eat sugar and would they suggest cutting it completely. You’ll have to listen to see what they say!

You can also read more about the dangers of sugar in this article by Dr Robert Lustig for the Guardian and in his book Fat Chance: The Truth about Sugar, Obesity and Disease.

Now, clearly I should be experiencing cognitive dissonance because, for as much as I was persuaded by the arguments against eating sugar, I also couldn’t stop reading baking blogs.

Soooo… here are some of my current favourite sites to stare at and drool over, just so we can all torture ourselves together:

  1. One of the very best vegan blogs out there- The Minimalist Baker
  2. One of my favourite vegan blogs with one of the best blog names- Oh, Ladycakes
  3. The classic and always enjoyable Joy the Baker
  4. Sprinkles Bakes for the crazy cake decorating ideas
  5. A new discovery- Comme Un Lait Fraise (aka Like Strawberry Milk)- which has some great photos

As it’s September, which always feels like the beginning of a new year because of school starting, here are some lists of new music, new podcasts and new TV for you to discover and share over the next few months.

Some weekend reading: Rebecca Traister on Hillary Clinton and her new book for The Cut.

And a weekend recipe to try: Incredible looking vegan snickers cheesecake bars from Pickles and Honey. Very excited about trying these!

Have a lovely weekend!

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