60 Minutes Asks, 'Is Sugar Toxic?' Sweetener's spate of bad publicity goes prime time By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Mar 31, 2012 11:29 AM CDT 20 comments Comments Sugar is generating some negative headlines. (Shutterstock) (Newser) – Crank up the sugar lobby. The sweetener will get the 60 Minutes treatment tomorrow night, with a spate of doctors arguing that it's essentially poison. One UC endocrinologist uses the word "toxic," and thinks the big debate between sugar and high-fructose corn syrup is a waste of breath. "They are basically equivalent," he says, according to CBS. "The problem is they're both bad. They're both equally toxic." He reiterates a call others have made that sugar be regulated like tobacco and alcohol. Americans consume about 130 pounds of "added sugars" a year, much of it in processed foods, according to the 60 Minutes piece, which includes worries that the excess is raising the risk not only of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes, but some forms of cancer as well. A member of the Sugar Association board says the science is "not completely clear" and that it's wrongheaded to single out one food. "The American consuming public is going to omit, eliminate sweeteners out of their diet."