A new study involving obese children found impressive results in lowering blood pressure and cholesterol in as little as 10 days. Scientists behind the study said it showed that sugar was “metabolically harmful not because of its calories” but because it is sugar.  The study looked at the effect of restricting sugar on metabolic syndrome, a cluster of conditions that increase the risk of heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.  A total of 43 children ages nine to 18 took part in the study. All the children had a Latino or African-American background and higher risk for certain conditions associated with metabolic syndrome, such as high blood pressure and high blood glucose levels. The children were all obese and had at least one other chronic disorder, such as high blood pressure.  Over a period of nine days, the children followed a meal plan that included all snacks and drinks, but restricted sugar intake.  The diet overall had the same fat, protein, carbohydrate, and calorie levels as their previous diets at home.  Initial fasting blood levels, blood pressure, and glucose tolerance were assessed before the new meals were eaten. Overall, the total dietary sugar in the meal plan was reduced from 28 percent to 10 percent, and fructose from 12 percent to 4 percent of total calories. Dr Robert Lustig, journal Obesity, 10-2015