When the U.S. Food and Drug Administration proposed new guidelines for sugar intake last week, the relevant recommendations seemed fairly reasonable: Americans should only get about 10 percent of their daily calories from added sugar. That adds up to about 50 grams, or 12.5 teaspoons of daily sugar on top of what’s naturally found in the foods we feed.
Alarmingly, however, the average person may consume some 100 grams of total sugar daily, thanks in part to the continued popularity of portable and convenient “snack” foods that are usually packed with the stuff for flavoring intents. Constructing matters difficult, food labels don’t differentiate between naturally occurring and added sugars.
Consider this: One serving of Chobani’s strawberry Greek yogurt contains 15 grams of sugar, almost a third of the total daily recommended added sugar uptake, and we haven’t even counted what’s in your morning coffee beverage.( Not to single out Chobani. Fage, for example, fares no better .~ ATAGEND)
And that’s merely yogurt, a healthful food that also offers benefits like protein and probiotics. A can of soda has a whopping 39 grams of sugar( order a large fountain soda and you’re doomed) and a standard orange chicken dish from a Chinese take-out eatery is packed with around 88 grams. And who hasn’t excavate a spoon into a jar of Nutella on a particularly stressful day?
The FDA’s new guidelines are more realistic than the stringent recommendation offered by the World Health Organization, which suggests a five percentage cap on all sugars save those from make and milk. Diets high in added sugar make its contribution to obesity, diabetes and heart disease , and going low sugar can lower blood pressure and reduce bad cholesterol levels and the risk of heart attack.
Unfortunately, it’s ridiculously easy to consume 50 grams of sugar or more in merely one sitting or snack. Here are 8 foods and beverages with sugar contents equivalent to a day’s worth of the FDA’s recommendation for added sugar :
One pumpkin muffin from Panera.
A large Dunkaccino from Dunkin’ Donuts or a grande eggnog latte from Starbucks.
A 16 -ounce bottle of Coca-Cola.
Less than a half a beaker of raisins, which is just a little more than one of those snack-size boxes.
One 12 -ounce bottle of Tropicana cranberry cocktail juice.
A 15.2 -ounce bottle of Odwalla’s original superfood fruit smoothie blend.
One medium order of Pinkberry’s original yogurt.
The concept of added sugar is a complex one, especially because nutrition labels still don’t identify added sugar. The body requires sugar naturally found in carbohydrates, like apples and sweet potatoes, for energy. But added sugar used to sweeten foods isn’t as advantageous: It’s basically empty calories. Added sugar spikes insulin and blood sugar levels and is used up rapidly by the body. In some cases, added sugar signals to the brain that the body wants to eat more, and it often leads to even more sugar cravings. This is the sugar that they are able set a person’s health at risk.
Being mindful of total sugar is a good place to start — and harder than it seems. Sugar sneaks into a lot of foods and beverages, and cutting back can be difficult.
Note: The food and liquor calculations above are based on each product’s total sugar content( natural and added ), because, just like any consumer, we’re not able to tell the difference from nutrition information provided.
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