Did you know that the average United States individual consumes more than 126 grams of sugar daily, the equivalent of more than three 12 ounce cans of Coca Cola? This amount is double the recommended daily intake by the World Health Organization, which indicates that the suggested amount for someone of normal weight is about 50 grams of sugar. Could your efforts to reduce sugar from your food and drinks and drop unwanted pounds be compromised because you did not know you had been eating sugar in other forms?
Hidden sugar forms
Some commonly used sweeteners include corn syrup, cane sugar and fruit juice concentrate. However, there are lesser known ones, which include cane juice, honey and agave.
Even low-fat and fat-free foods have very high amounts of sugar. This is so as when fat is taken out of something, either concentrated sugar is left behind, or sugar is added to what remains to give it the flavor that’s missing as the fat is gone. Consuming products that boast “fruit” and “juice” or “no sugar added” on the labels are worse as they often contain highly concentrated fructose, which is worse than straight-up sugar. “Healthy foods” such as cereals and yoghurt contains much sugar as well, as a cup of fruit with yoghurt can contain more than 30 grams of sugar, the equivalent of 7-8 teaspoons of sugar.
And if you are keen to find out more than 40 other sneaky names for sugar, this infographic shows you some forms that could have been deceiving you all this while.
Dangers of consuming too much sugar
Sugar is highly addictive and research has shown that it is as addictive as cocaine, as brain scans show the pleasure and reward centers light up in the exact same way when people consume cocaine or sugar.
In addition, sugar can cause us to become enslaved to it, physically and emotionally. Physically, when sugar is consumed, blood sugar level rises and this causes insulin to be released; this is more commonly felt as the “sugar high” followed by a “sugar crash”. The cycle continues as the sugar crash causes greater cravings for more sugar. Emotionally, sugar can control our behavior, and we become energetic then lethargic. This affects the way we work and relate to others.
Moreover, apart from causing inflammation and obesity, sugar weakens the immune system, thereby putting us at risk for dozens of other health issues, such as high blood pressure and even the common cold and flu. Worse, sugar is linked to some deadly heath issues such as cancer and heart disease, as researchers have found that cancer cells thrive on sugar. It appears that it’s sugar, not cholesterol, that destroys the arteries.
If you have been swapping your bread for cereal, fruit and milk, and making a conscious effort to pick healthier snacks for your mid-day tea break at work, but still unable to see any weight losses or belly fat reduction, it could be time to check out the sugar contents in your new-found perceived healthy food swaps. For a more effective way of losing some weight or belly fat, try out the high fiber diet or check out some really easy ways to lose some weight by simply changing some of your habits. And to quell the mid-afternoon hunger, you can consider packing some superfruits or seeds.
Zensorium | 3 Outrageously Simple Ways to Lose Weight
Zensorium | 5 Health Benefits You Get From Eating Seeds
Zensorium | 5 Healthy Breakfast Food Swaps: Calories Slashing
Zensorium | 5 Superfruits That Boost Your Immune System
Zensorium | For Long-Lasting Weight Loss Results: Focus on Fiber
The Washington Post | Where people around the world eat the most sugar and fat
Popsugar | Look For These 46 Ways Added Sugar Can Appear on Your Food Label
Christian Broadcasting Network | The Danger of Sugars and Where They’re Hidden
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