How much sugar do eleven plus children need? Our society has become addicted to sugar. About one hundred and fifty years ago sugar was virtually unknown in the West. Children today meet sugar in all sorts of ways – from little `lifesaving sweets’ to `must have’ biscuits.
There is a fairly general feeling that refined sugar is bad for the body. The only real contention is just how bad sugar is for us. Some medical authorise used to think that sugar caused diabetes and contributed towards coronary thrombosis and ulcers.
Some `experts’ also feel that the `sweet tooth’ so beloved by many of us is not a natural urge – it has come about through social convention.
There is a village in Ecuador called Villacabamba where people live for a long time. Of the eight hundred or so inhabitants nine were over one hundred and one was one hundred and forty two. Their diet has remarkably little fat and even less sugar. They eat a lot of vegetables and only eat a few grams of meat a week.
It would take a very brave mother to suggest, and implement, a simple diet with little fat and sugar in the build up to the eleven plus.
Some children may benefit from a reasonably well balanced diet; we sometimes see families where children arrive for their lessons with little cartons of fresh fruit and raw vegetables. We are more like to see sweets and coke.
Few mothers, however, in today’s world need to be reminded that eleven plus children, like so many of us, just need to eat sensibly and well.