Added Sugar In Food Adds Up Quickly: What Wise Consumers Know

More than 75 percent of processed foods contain added sugar.

Careful label readers can discover packaged foods that are as wholesome as processed foods can be. They do not contain irritants such as food dyes, high fructose corn syrup, or MSG. Some brands use organic, antibiotic-free, and even GMO-free ingredients.

However, if you regularly eat food that comes out of a jar, can, wrapper, or box, and are not an informed reader of food labels, you may be ingesting more sugar than you realize. The only foods you can count on to be free from added sugar are fresh produce and animal products that have not been altered from their natural state.

How Added Sugar Adds Up

Even foods that appear to be healthy can hold a startling amount of sugar or fructose. For instance, someone might purchase a blackberry muffin instead of a sweet roll to enjoy with their coffee, not realizing the muffin may contain up to 30 grams of sugar — as much as some candy bars.

A growing pile of credible research suggests excess sugar consumption is associated with several chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. One recent study that focused on added sugar intake among adults in the United States found that:

  • Nearly three-quarters of adults ingest 10 percent or more of their calories each day from added sugar.
  • About 10 percent of U.S. adults, from 2005-2010, received 25 percent or more of their calories each day from added sugar.
  • Grain-based desserts, sugar-sweetened beverages, dairy desserts, fruits drinks, and candy are our most common sources of added sugar.

Reducing Added Sugar

American adults frequently eat 22 teaspoons of sugar per day, approximately 350 calories, from added sugar sources. What the American Heart Association, WHO, and many doctors and nutritionists recommend is much less — our daily added sugar intake should be approximately 10 percent of our total daily calories.

Seven Ways to Reduce Added Sugar Consumption:

  1. The most obvious way: add less sugar to your food and drinks.
  2. When possible, use fresh fruit instead of canned fruit.
  3. Replace grain-based simple carbs (bagels, pancakes, white breads) with fresh vegetables, high-quality proteins, healthy fats, and a low to moderate amount of complex carbohydrates (whole grains).
  4. Use the herb stevia to sweeten your food and drink.
  5. Replace processed or packaged foods with unprocessed whole foods.
  6. Add flavor to meals with spices rather than sugar.
  7. Read food labels: four grams of sugar is about one teaspoon. (Dr. Mercola recommends limiting daily sugar intake—from all sources—to 25 grams or fewer per day, or six teaspoons.)

Reading Food Labels for Sugar

On a food label, “reduced sugar” means the food has 25 percent less sugar than when in its original form. The phrase “low sugar” is unregulated, so on a package, it tells you nothing useful. Products with “no sugar added” are usually not sugar free; however, no sugar was added in as the food was processed. Foods that contain fructose often call it “sugar” on the nutrition label.

Sugar can be indicated on packaging as nectar, molasses, corn sweetener, evaporated cane juice, high fructose corn syrup, honey, syrup, or with several words that end in -ose (e.g., dextrose).

The FDA is currently considering new nutrition label guidelines and may decide to include added sugar content on them.

The Spectre of Resistance

It is estimated that 80 percent of adults in the United States have developed insulin resistance, which may lead to diabetes. If you fall into this category, even 25 grams of sugar each day may be too much until your insulin level is normalized. Consult with a doctor or nutritionist about your dietary needs.

Source: Mercola.com

Get a Free Diabetes Meal Plan

Get a free 7-Day Diabetes Meal Plan from Constance Brown-Riggs who is a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator and who is also a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Just enter in your email below to download your free Diabetes Meal Plan.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to InformationAboutDiabetes.com who may contact you with updates and information and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy.

More Articles

Doctors use regular assessments of their diabetic patients not only to monitor the progress of the disease but also as opportunities to counsel...

Every body needs insulin, an essential hormone produced by the pancreas that regulates blood sugar by converting glucose into energy. Diabetics...

People are not the only beings who suffer from diabetes. Any mammal with a pancreas can develop the disease through a lack of or impaired insulin...

When is diabetes not really diabetes? When it is Diabetes Insipidus. Diabetes Insipidus is a rare disorder not related to diabetes mellitus,...

When news stations feature stories about diabetes, they tend to include a shot of an overweight body, calling attention to the person's excess...

More Articles

The most well-known variations of diabetes are type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes....

Those who have not yet been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes can greatly reduce their susceptibility by doing one key...

There are those who have heard of the term "diabetes mellitus," but might not be familiar with it. Diabetes Mellitus is a condition in...

Not only is dry skin uncomfortable, but scratched or cracked skin is also susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections – common medical...

=It’s helpful to know the difference between a food’s total grams of carbohydrate, and net grams of carbohydrate since only net carbs affect blood...

Eating LCHF, or a Low Carb High Fat diet, is a bit mind-bending for those of us who have learned to consume low-fat and lean. In many respects, it...

A 1-minute quiz could predict whether or not you're at risk for prediabetes. More than 1 in 3 adults in the U.S. have prediabetes, which - left...

The human body needs chromium, a trace mineral, for several essential functions including the normalizing of...

Do not let pictures of yoga experts with their bodies twisted into bizarre, compact shapes fool you. Even people with stiff muscles, creaky joints...

It can be difficult enough to get on stage and make a roomful of strangers laugh, but for comedians suffering from type 1 or type 2 diabetes,...

Because beets have moderately high sugar content, it’s typically recommended that people watching their glucose levels limit beet consumption....

It would be interesting to know how many people with diabetes actually use blood glucose control solutions to regularly check the accuracy of...

Gestational diabetes is a condition characterized by abnormally high blood glucose levels during the condition...

How frustrating to wake up in the morning with elevated blood sugar when all you did was dream about eating a piece of cheesecake. A seemingly...

There is nothing close to a one-size-fits-all exercise program for those with diabetic peripheral neuropathy. The best general advice is to...