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The Back Story

It started with Sugar Addiction Awareness Day — a movement started by a coalition of clinicians and laypeople based on three cornerstones: (1) that sugar addiction is real, (2) that sugar addiction is a serious medical issue, and (3) that everyone must know about the reality of sugar addiction.

The press release is available, below, describes the first annual Sugar Addiction Awareness Day.

The Sugar Addiction Awareness Coalition is an all-volunteer effort unconnected with any commercial enterprise. This is the Beta version of our website and we welcome your feedback.

Please contact us at: hijillescher@gmail.com or 408.314.1655


Press Release, September 22, 2011


October 30 Marks First Annual “Sugar Addiction Awareness Day”

Leading health experts, concerned citizens seek to make Halloween healthy, raise awareness of sugar’s addictive qualities

San Jose, CA, September 22, 2011 –

Amid increasing concern about the health impacts of sugar overconsumption, and particularly the addictive qualities of sugar, the first annual Sugar Addiction Awareness Day (SAAD) is kicking off October 30, 2011. The effort, supported by many leading physicians, researchers, nutritionists, and obesity experts, promotes a fun but sugar-free Halloween and aims to raise awareness of the potentially dangerous, and addictive, effects of excessive sugar consumption, especially for young people.

“Halloween candy seems like an innocent treat, but the reality is that millions of Americans are hooked on refined sugars, and it starts in their youth,” Jill Escher, founder of SAAD and author of the book, Farewell, Club Perma-Chub: A Sugar Addict’s Guide to Easy Weight Loss. “Chronic sugar consumption is a big contributor to the sweeping epidemics of obesity, metabolic syndrome and diabetes we see today. I am excited to stand with many leading lights in supporting Sugar Addiction Awareness Day as a big step forward in helping people break the cycle of sugar dependence.”

Over two-thirds of adults in the United States are overweight, with over one-third obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Approximately one-third of U.S. children and teens are now overweight, with 17% obese. Rates of type 2 diabetes, a disease of uncontrolled blood sugars, are skyrocketing: according to the CDC, as many as 1 in 3 U.S. adults could have diabetes by 2050 if current trends continue.

A silent culprit here, says a growing chorus of experts, is an unwitting addiction to sugary foods and beverages and processed carbs, all of which can have a drug-like impact.

“Kids eat junk food because it tastes good and is readily available, but, in the process their brains develop changes to keep the behavior going, which eventually may result in being unable to stop eating the foods, i.e., an actual addiction,” says Robert Pretlow, M.D., an authority on childhood obesity. Research on rat models (Avena) and human brain scans (Gearhardt), for example, has demonstrated neurochemical changes and patterns indicative of addiction.

Many clinicians now see sugar dependence as a pervasive problem among their clientele. “Because of food manufacturing practices, people can no longer stop with one,” says Darlene Kvist, Licensed Nutritionist and host of the popular podcast, Dishing Up Nutrition. “Addiction to sugar and processed carbohydrates is rampant today. The true solution to the obesity crisis and sugar addiction is helping people learn to eat real food again.”

Obesity expert Zoe Harcombe, nutritionist and author of The Obesity Epidemic, says the time to kick sugar addiction is now. “The good news is that freedom from sugar addiction is worth every second of withdrawal thousands of times over.”

SAAD’s website provides ideas and inspiration for kicking the sugar habit at Halloween, and throughout the year–in the community, at school, at work, and at home. More information is available on www.sugaraddictionawarenessday.org.
About SAAD

Based in San Jose, CA, SAAD is an all-volunteer effort to spread the word about the reality of sugar addiction. Many notable individuals are supporting Sugar Addiction Awareness Day and offering to speak to the media about Sugar Addiction–what it is, its role in today’s public health crises, and routes to recovery.
Please contact jill.escher@gmail.com for the experts’ contact information.

Nicole Avena, Ph.D, University of Florida. Dr. Avena’s pioneering research, using rodent models, has demonstrated the addictive qualities of highly palatable refined foods.

Connie Bennett, author of Sugar Shock! How Sweets and Simple Carbs Can Derail Your Life–And How You Can Get Back on Track and founder of the Sugar Freedom Now course. Ms. Bennett is a former sugar addict who released her habit on doctor’s orders in 1998.

Jill Escher, founder of SAAD, author of Farewell, Club Perma-Chub: A Sugar Addict’s Guide to Easy Weight Loss, and a former sugar addict. Ms. Escher is located in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Zoe Harcombe, nutritionist, obesity expert, and author of Why Do You Overeat When All You Want Is to Be Slim? and The Obesity Epidemic, and host of the podcast “Diet and Health Today.” Ms. Harcombe is located in England.

Ashley Gearhardt, doctoral candidate, Clinical Psychology, and with the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale University. Gearhardt’s 2011 study revealing patterns of  drug-like addiction based on brain scans of people affected with compulsive overeating was widely reported.

Darlene Kvist, Licensed Nutritionist, host of the podcast “Dishing Up Nutrition.” Ms. Kvist and staff have helped thousands of clients control cravings, conquer sugar addiction, lose weight and regain their health through proper nutrition. Ms. Kvist is located in Minnesota.

Jimmy Moore, host of The Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb Show, one of the most popular health podcasts on iTunes. Mr. Moore has interviewed hundreds of health experts, has written two books relating to the subject, and himself found recovery from sugar addiction through a low-carb food plan. Mr. Moore is located in South Carolina.

Jeff O’Connell, editor, fitness expert, and author of the recently published Sugar Nation: The Hidden Truth Behind America’s Deadliest Epidemic and The Simple Way to Beat It. Mr. O’Connell is located in Idaho.

Fred Pescatore, M.D., weight loss physician and author of The Hamptons Diet and Feed Your Kids Well: How to Help Your Child Lose Weight and Get Healthy. Dr. Pescatore, who began his career working with Dr. Robert Atkins, has been helping patients recover from Sugar Addiction and find permanent weight loss for decades.  Dr. Pescatore is located in New York City.

Robert Pretlow, M.D., pediatrician, childhood obesity expert, director of Weigh2Rock.com, an online weight loss program for teens and tweens, and developer of an iPhone app based on the addiction model of obesity.  Dr. Pretlow is the author of Overweight: What Kids Say, and of a recent article in the journal Eating Disorders discussing links between childhood obesity and refined food addiction. He is located in the Seattle area.

Gary Taubes, award-winning journalist and best-selling author of Good Calories, Bad Calories and Why We Get Fat. Mr. Taubes is widely credited for writing groundbreaking pieces that have changed the way we understand today’s chronic diseases.  Mr. Taubes is located in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D., physician and author of Beat Sugar Addiction Now! and Real Cause, Real Cure. Dr. Teitelbaum specializes in helping patients recover from chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia and other conditions related at least in part to Sugar Addiction. Dr. Teitelbaum is located in Maryland.



Podcasts and articles about or featuring End Sugar Addiction founder Jill Escher

Livin la Vida Low Carb Show (podcast), with Jimmy Moore, http://livinlavidalowcarb.com/blog/the-llvlc-show-episode-550-jill-escher-tells-sugar-addicts-to-say-farewell-club-permachub/13424

Santa Cruz Weekly http://www.santacruz.com/news/2012/03/06/kicking_sugar_for_better_health

San Jose Mercury News: http://www.mercurynews.com/san-jose-neighborhoods/ci_19109391?nclick_check=1

Carbohydrates Can Kill podcast: http://www.carbohydratescankill.com/2931/72-sugar-addiction-awareness-day

Dishing Up Nutrition podcast (October 22 show, on Alzheimer’s): http://www.weightandwellness.com/dun_radio.html

Underground Wellness podcast: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/undergroundwellness/2011/11/04/overcoming-sugar-addiction-with-jill-escher

Super Human Radio: http://www.podfeed.net/episode/Super+Human+Radio+Show+SHR++846+-+Athletic+Intervention+PLUS+Make+November+National+Sugar+Awareness+Month/3202038

Gab With the Gurus:http://www.blogtalkradio.com/gabwiththegurus/2011/10/30/sugar-addiction-awareness-day-kicks-off-before-halloween

Get Better Wellness with Erin Chamerlik: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/getbetterwellness/2011/11/29/10-ways-to-beat-sugar-addiction-with-jill-escher-1

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