Mary Toscano Healthy Living

Mary Toscano Healthy Living > Sweet Fire > Reviews & Praise

Sweet Fire Video
Fabulous Fats
About Mary Toscano

Reviews & Praise for Sweet Fire


See Mary Toscano's
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Mary Toscano is featured in the July 2013 issue of Better Nutrition Magazine!
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Interviews with Mary Toscano

KION TV Interview: Wake Up Central Coast

Interview Date: November 19, 2013
Online Date: November 20, 2013
What: Megan Munro and Dave Alley of KION's Wake Up Central Coast interviewed author and speaker, Mary Toscano.
Where to Watch: Click here to view online.


Chelmsford TV Interview: Health Styles with Connie Mead

Interview Date: September, 2013
Online Date: October, 2013
What: Connie Mead, host of Chelmsford TV's Health Styles interviewed author and speaker, Mary Toscano.
Where to Watch: Click here to view online.


American Freedom Radio Interview with Steve St Clair
October 17, 2009

My Philosophy (1:35)
The Sugar Fat Connection (1:44)
Planning Ahead (1:34) interview with Sandy Brekenridge

Read Mary Toscano interview: Sweet Fire


Praise for the Sweet Fire Book

I have been teaching classes and leading monthly groups for my patients with diabetes and prediabetes for many years. My commitment is to read a book each month on the subject and share that with my patients. Sweet Fire is one of the most readable, understandable books that I've had the pleasure of reading in the past 4 years. I will be including this on my recommended reading list to all my patients. Blood sugar problems are the most common chronic disorder that I treat and everyone can benefit from Mary's sound advice and years of experience.

-- Bruce Eisendorf, M.D., Medical Director of Group Office Visits, Palo Alto Medical Foundation in Santa Cruz


Mary Toscano is gifted with being able to transform health topics into simple, visual formulas that are easy to understand by both young and older persons alike.

-- Kathy Cummins, Holistic Culinary Arts Instructor, Bauman College


OMG, the book is really, really awesome! I got through the whole book and I am seriously impressed. Fantastic work and this really, really comes across with lots of info, but not too overwhelming. This seems like the kind of book that people could have on their shelves for years. I am really, really impressed and I hope this becomes a classic! I know I'll be sending copies to parents and friends. :)

-- Steve A, Santa Cruz, CA


I love what Mary has done to turn a complicated subject into an easy learn.

-- David J. Getoff, CCN, CTN, FAAIM, Vice President, Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation


Praise for the Sweet Fire DVD

Blog Reviews

...If you find you have a sweet tooth, are struggling with sugar addiction, or want to understand more about simple and complex carbs this is a must watch DVD. In a classroom setting, with props, visuals, and active participants Mary Toscano takes you on a journey into the unknown world of sugar and the havoc it can wreak on the body. In her gentle, down to earth, and kind style, Toscano vividly teaches the viewer about the dangerous dance most of us unknowingly take part in with sugar. Sweet Fire educates, informs and opens the viewers' eyes to facts about sugar and how sugar impacts the body[... ] I’ve watched many DVD’s and listened to audio programs that provide great facts, figures, and information on certain problems but they end there; this is not so with Sweet Fire. Toscano gives you tools to begin breaking free from the sugar curse and ways to start getting healthy right away...

Read complete blog at

-- Barbara Cronin, In the Flow Writing,

... A highly informative and practical crash-course in what different foods do to your body, and how to pick the foods that promote good health...On film she comes across like that one biology teacher in high school that everyone loved: the one who could make the complexities of science accessible to even the most clueless jocks. It's actually entertaining to watch her talk about hydrogenated fats and essential fatty acids. I learned, and was reminded of, a whole heck of a lot of important info about eating healthfully.

Read complete blog at

-- Amy Tenderich,


Video Testimonials



Excerpt from DVD entitled

Children's Emotional Problems
ADD / ADHD and More

by David Getoff, Naturopath




My dearest Mary Toscano -- I wanted to thank you for the most amazing videos Sweet Fire and Fabulous Fats, which are making a great difference in my life, after years of not knowing what is really wrong with me with your videos, I have found out that am sugar sensitive (diabetes runs in the family) - which of course doctors have dismissed for years...You were clever enough to inform us about chromium picolinate being a co-enzyme for insulin which I have taken on board and using with amazing effect in curbing sugar cravings and sugar spikes, and short-term memory loss is getting better THANK YOU THANK YOU.
...please use whatever words you wish to describe my awe of your wonderful long-awaited and beautifully crafted work. Both the illustrations and songs were superb, and bringing many smiles whilst learning was/is a real pleasure. I for one am quite visual and have enjoyed immensely watching both your videos time and time again.Once again many thanks for being such an instrumental person in my life. Many many kind regards.

-- M Kanji, United Kingdom

I wanted to tell you how much your video, Sweet Fire, changed my life. Here I was going along, thinking I was eating healthy. WOW! How I was wrong. I'm a member of Curves and joined their weight management course. Curves played your video to us and now I feel armed to understand how to be truly healthy. I feel completely different about my choices in food. Actually, I feel completely different in how I think about food. I've lost 9 pounds in the last month and feel so much better. Amazing. Thank you for all you do, it made such a difference in my life. .

-- Heather M, Wimberley, TX

I watched Sweet Fire and I thought it was just awesome! I am currently studying toward a dip. Applied Clinical Nutrition. I come originally from a background of ill health, and am filled with a desire to educate the people of NZ toward better nutrition. We suffer the same dietary woes as the States, with obesity and diabetes becoming a bigger problem than cancer for our next generation of young folk. Again a big thank you! If you are ever in NZ please let me know so I can welcome you warmly to my great country!

-- Rose K, New Zealand

I purchased "Sweet Fire" last fall and have just finished reviewing it with my fiance for the 3rd time. We've decided to take our "sugar intake" awareness to the next level & will be watching your talk 4 more Wednesdays this month. We're both over 50, with full time jobs, several short & long-term goals that keep us busy, and a desire to continue living life to it's fullest. I'm a life coach for women and intend on sharing your work with them at my next class. I LOVE how you presented the information in the DVD and want to know when you're going to present the next segment "Fabulous Fats." There's a tremendous NEED for those fortunate enough to live in the US to take back their health.

-- Gloria L, Santa Cruz, CA

I watched Sweet Fire and I was very impressed. To be honest, I was a little leary at first, wondering what product you were endorsing or what powdered drink you might try and get me to buy. Once I saw Sweet Fire, however, I was very grateful for the information it presented. It was non-alarmist, and non-commercial, but it did awaken me to a greater sense of responsibility I need to take towards my own health and that of my little son. I love how you spoke of making little changes, of adding to your diet rather than taking away from it. It's much easier for me to conceptualizing adding an apple or a carrot to my meal rather than swearing off M&Ms forever. Thanks again for your DVD. I was surprised at how much I got out of it. It has truly made a difference in my food choices.

-- Kathleen A, Maui, Hawaii

For years now, I've felt that if only people could actually visualize the damage being done to our bodies, as we are eating "that piece of chocolate cake", people would be able to make better choices about what they eat. I also believe, (having raised three boys) that the reason why our school children have so many problems such as attention deficit disorder, is that they are too hyped up (or crashing) on sugar's vicious circle. It all seems so obvious. It all boils down to education, and getting the message to children, early on. Not only that, but then it needs to get to their parents too, which means a "life style" change. I've recommended your video to many people...I am convinced that your method of teaching nutrition should be a program that is adopted and taught in schools all over the U.S.

-- Roseanne P, Santa Cruz, CA

WOW!!! I knew I wasn’t doing myself any favors with my diet, but I didn’t realize that I have pretty much been committing suicide over the years. I will definitely be adding whole foods and better grains to my diet... Thank you so very much for taking the time and energy to educate young and old alike in an easy non threatening manner on something we all need to know!

-- Carrie A, Bradenton, FL

I am a board certified psychiatric clinical nurse specialist and a family nurse practitioner. My private practice is primarily psychiatry. I have purchased your Sweet Fire tape and was delighted with the content. I am using this for teaching with my patients especially those that are using antipsychotics, but not just them. They find it very easy to understand which helps me alot.

-- Geraldine K, Chicopee, MA

Mary, I have recommended your video to all of the patrons that come in the library! Everyone needs to watch this. You will never be able to sit down with a bag of chocolate bars or a bowl of ice cream without thinking about how your body will react to all of that sugar. It will definitely change the way you think about your foods choices. Thanks for such an informative video!

-- Mary S, AR

Since seeing Mary's video and understanding the relationship between sugar and carbohydrates, I've lost 20 lbs and lowered my cholesterol by 40 points.

-- Mike P, San Francisco, CA

My husband and I both watched your Sweet Fire video, and it is currently making the rounds of the admin team at Gateway [6th grade daughter's school]. My husband and I both enjoyed the video and found it to be very informative. You did a terrific job of making complex information easily understandable for the lay person. After watching the video we have changed the types of food we buy and eat, and are much less cavalier about candy and sweets which are such a prevalent part of our culture. Thank you so much!

-- Colleen S, Santa Cruz, CA

How many years have I heard DON'T EAT SUGAR!!!! I sort of knew why but I wasn't a chemistry major so I really didn't know why.. Your DVD told me WHY & HOW in the easiest laymen terms and in a way that I clearly could understand and see. Your liver, pancreas and kidney characters running around trying to make it all work really stuck with me. I never thought of my body working so hard all the time. It took time for me to also realize the tiredness, crabby depressed/high feeling was coming from overworking my system in a way that it could never catch up -- I was on a train heading straight to chronic illness. (read entire letter)

-- Francine L, Berkeley, CA

I just finished watching the DVD, and through much of it, my mouth kept dropping open! My 7-year old daughter has had Type I diabetes (insulin-dependent) for 6 years, and I thought I had assimilated everything I had to know about carbohydrates. ...I didn't know the half of it!. I realize since becoming a super-busy mom-at-home, I've become lax in some of our food choices. As soon as I finish this comment, I'm sitting down to make a list of people who also need to know this stuff! And then on to a new menu planning regimen..

Thank you for a wonderful presentation, so full of visuals that I've never seen in any book. The visuals and demonstrations make your presentation easy for kids to understand. I'd like to add this presentation to our homeschooling curriculum when the kids are a mite older (age 9 and on). Thank you again!

-- Lisa D, Augusta, ME

[Sweet Fire] was AWESOME on many levels. You are an excellent teacher! It got me all excited about sugar biochemistry and health... Not only did it really help me go farther with my knowledge, such as understanding how high blood sugar screws up your lipids, but I thought the way you communicated it with the sugar was just brilliant. I would think it would have a profound impact on people who don't even have a clue about the underlying biochemistry. It was also excellent how you started from basic principles and slowly worked into the more complex things...

-- John M, Cupertino, CA

. What separates this lesson from others is the way Mary clearly explains and demonstrates how your body processes food. Her lively and interactive style takes complex information and breaks it down to a level my 7th graders easily understand and can incorporate into their teenage lifestyles. Adults truly need to know the information presented here in order to pursue a more dynamic, youthful lifestyle.

-- Susan T, Santa Cruz, CA

The information presented here has been enormously useful to me in understanding what's really going on with my blood sugar. I was diagnosed as an insulin-dependent diabetic five years ago, and it's taken me a while for it all to sink in. I now understand the importance of keeping both my blood sugar under tight control as well as the desirability of minimizing my need for insulin. This presentation of key nutritional and physiological facts -- which everyone should understand -- are of great help to me. It is even more important that the at-risk population learn this material, too. Thank you!

-- David E, Westport, CT

The video is very informative, not only for people who suffer from diabetes, but for the general public. Most people have no clue as to how much sugar is in most foods and they don't know how to calculate the amounts. This video makes you really think about what you are eating! I really liked the demo where you measured the amount of sugar a person would consume in an average days worth of food. It also made you realize that there are many foods out there that seem "healthy" but in fact are not!! GREAT VIDEO!

-- Sandy O, Oakdale, CA

Mary Toscano clearly knows her topic intimately and provides thorough analysis and astonishing information about “hidden” sugars in our daily diets – she gives you information that you can apply right away to feel better and vastly improve your health. I thought I had a healthy diet but after seeing Mary’s presentation, I made some big changes !

-- Patty D, Santa Cruz,, CA

Dear Mary, I am the proud owner of your 'Sweet Fire' DVD. Thank you. Watching your video has already 'cured' my wife's irritable bowel problems as well as her hot flashes--- remarkable!

-- Peter V, Maplewood, NJ

As soon as I watched this video, my food choices changed. It's a window opening onto a new view -- a view of better health, both right now and for the long term.

-- Eric, Lowell, MA

Mary presents the information on sugar in a way that fully involves the viewer, making it fun and interesting.

-- Nandi, Santa Cruz, CA

Sweet Fire makes sugar and how the body processes it completely real and comprehensible. We've always known that sugar is not good for us in large quantities, but we never knew what really happens to our bodies when we over consume sugar. Nor did we realize how much sugar we were ingesting unknowingly. It adds up so fast! This video was a true eye opener and we recommend that everyone watch it, especially children. I am an educator and it astonishes me how much junk food parents are allowing their children eat. If everyone knew and practiced the basic information that Mary Toscano teaches in this video we would be healthier and happier people.

-- Todd and Heather W, Davenport, CA

Mary's clear, straight forward, and humorous style, combined with her warmth and wisdom, enabled me to take in what she was saying and make major changes in my life. Who knew that all organic fruit juice becomes just simple sugar!! Thank-you, Mary!

-- Sita P, Santa Cruz, CA

I just wanted to tell you about how impressed I was with your whole presentation... You had visual learning, kinesthetic learning, engaging and fun interpretations of a difficult subject! You made the effects of different sugars on the body easy to understand from many angles.

Mostly I feel so smart now :-) I know all about the organs that help the body use all the types of sugar as fuel. And now I'm trying not eating refined sugar by adding better things to my diet. Already I feel better. Yesterday was the first day in I don't know how long that I woke up after only the first two "snooze" sessions and I didn't feel so groggy. Thank you so much!

-- Rhianna A, Watsonville, CA


I personally suggest watching the video to learn more about the ill effects of sugar. People don't realize how what they eat can effect their long term health. It's interesting that when I was suffering from depression that I did not correlate that my moods stemmed from what I was eating. When I focused on changing my diet based on how I felt, weight loss was easy.

My husband Rob (engineer) and daughters Carrie (age 10) and Melissa (age 6) have all watched the video and learned a great deal about how food can effect their moods. Also, reading labels on food is more prevalent than before. I used to only look at fats and sugar, now I look at carbs as well.


-- Carolyn G, Sutton, MA

..Oddly enough, just the previous week someone sent me a copy of the New York Times article: "The Big Fat Lie", which I now read with interest. Needless to say having followed a vegetarian, low-fat--high carb diet for more than twenty-five years I found the central theme of your talk and the New York Times article quite disconcerting. It sounds like I have been blowing it for a quarter of a century!

For me the most enlightening part of your talk was gaining an understanding of the close relationship between carbohydrates and sugar ...

-- Tony N, Santa Cruz, CA

  1. Healthy foods give you vitamins and sugary foods take them away
  2. There are different types of sugar and they all turn to glucose
  3. Fiber slows down the rate the sugar enters the blood
  4. The blood sugar control team is: kidney/adrenals, liver and pancreas
  5. Insulin is the key that opens up the cell doors to let sugar in
  6. Glucagon is the opposite of insulin
  7. Sugar is always sugar no matter where you get it from
  8. Too much sugar can kill you, so can not enough
  9. How simple sugars hit your bloodstream like a huge box of peanuts being dropped on your head
  10. How a small cup of coffee can follow you the whole day

-- Gateway School 6th Grade, when asked for "10 things they learned"

...have been trying for years to understand the "poly" and "molly" sway of life and you have presented it in a very clear, easy to understand manner. Your visual aids were outstanding and you gave a very smooth presentation. I will be able to share this info with my clients on a deeper level now.

-- Denise W, Seaside, CA


... I just wanted to tell you how wonderful your presentation was. Cary and I both learned so much. He is actually at the gym right now and I am eating my brown rice and veggies .. so I guess actions speak even louder than words. Thank you again ...

-- Connie, Santa Cruz, CA

Since I heard your talk, I've been following a low-sugar low-glycemic diet that avoids hydrogenated fats and includes a lot of nut oils - combined with regular cardio workouts and weight-lifting schedule .. I've lost about ten pounds effortlessly and gained a lot of muscle mass, and I feel great! I don't think I've been sick for a whole year. This is how I'm going to live the rest of my life .. thank you for inspiring me to change how I think about eating!"

-- Jay K, Santa Cruz, CA


Thank you so much for this great video. I learned how much healthier it is to eat whole foods rather than processed foods; that it's important to check the grams of carbohydrates in foods; plus, I was made aware that the liver is a vulnerable organ and that I was taking it too much for granted over the years.

-- Judith T, Chelmsford, MA

.. the visual representations were excellent. I especially enjoyed your conversion of grams of sugar to actual teaspoons of sugar. It was a real eye-opener to see how much sugar is in the food we eat. Using the little girl to represent "the body" and asking her to process polysaccharides vs. monosaccharides, was extremely effective in getting the point across that the body cannot deal with sugar overload. .. I had no idea that the wheat berry was stripped of basically all of the important ingredients and basically just left the endosperm .. it was a great idea to look at common food labels, especially of so-called "healthy" foods. I was shocked that a cup of O.J. contains 7 teaspoons of sugar ...I appreciated your good advice at the end of the DVD, including how to modify your diet to try and avoid diabetes and other serious illnesses. I'm also going to visit the website that you mentioned to look up some stuff that I eat all the time.

-- Kim T, Sutton, MA


After I watched the Sweet Fire presentation by Mary Toscano, I divided the sugar grams contained in my "no fat" breakfast yogurt and realized that there are seven teaspoons of sugar in it! Mary's extensive research is presented in a fun and informative way that allowed me to painlessly eliminate frivolous sugar and improve my health. Thanks Mary!

-- Jean A, Aptos, CA


... I found when I cut out all white sugar/flour food, my cholesterol went way down. After watching the video, I now understand why.

-- Diana V, Santa Cruz, CA


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