Well, Do You Know How Much Sugar You Consume Each Day?

Sugar, sugar, sugar. I know I have written several blogs on the harmful effects of sugar, but yet again it is in the news. One of the most recent articles that I read on the subject had a rather sensationalistic title of “Americans eat too much sugar, and it’s killing us.” While others take the same information and present it a little more analytically. Regardless, what a not so pleasant surprise though that our sugar addiction is killing us. I guess at least it is going to be a sweet death (insert sarcasm!).

JAMA Internal Medicine published a study that finds 71.4% of US adults get more than 10% of their calories from added sugar in food and drink. Added sugar was defined as all sugars in processed or prepared foods, and not natural sugars from fruits. This study looked at 11,733 participants and broke them up into 5 groups based on their consumption of sugar. The lowest group got 9.6% of their calories from added sugar while the highest group got 21.3% of their calories from added sugar. This high group of sugar eaters accounts for 10% of the people that participated.

I am just amazed at the amount of sugar that people are consuming on a daily basis, but then again sugar is in everything. From taco seasoning mixes, to breads, to the obvious sugary foods like desserts and candy bars. It is hard to get away from sugar when you live a busy life and need a few things to help you get meals on the table at night or for breakfast. However, you can slowly make better choices by reading labels and making sure that sugar content is low. Or, that at least it is true cane sugar that they are using, and not artificial sweeteners. Something else to consider is that usually it is a healthier product when sugar isn’t in the first 3 or 4 ingredients on the side of the box, but is lower down that ingredient list.

With Valentine’s Day this month, this sugar article could not come out at a better time. I wonder what the average intake of sugar is on Valentine’s Day, and the chocolate filled days that follow. Remember to just say no to sugar!