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The Need to Prevent Obesity by Reducing Daily Sugar Intake – American Heart Association

In the extremely busy life that we have now, it is difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle. This is a leading cause of modern-day health issues like obesity, depression, etc. We must focus on a healthy diet. One of the common problems people facing in the USA is obesity. Obesity is on its peak because of an unhealthy diet and lack of physical activity.

Use of high amounts of sugar leads one to many health problems which include diabetes and obesity. According to an estimate, about 19.5 teaspoons of sugar is consumed by a person living in the United States every single day. We need to know the amount of sugar that our daily products contain so that we must only consume an appropriate amount of sugar.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines published in 2015, all children and adults need to reduce their sugar intake to less than 10 percent of the total energy they intake in a day. If they manage to decrease it to about 5 percent, then it would lead to increased health benefits.

Did you know?

  1. The maximum amount of sugar that we should consume should not be more than 9 and 6 tablespoons for men and women respectively.
  2. Products like chocolate bars, soda, and cereals contain a high amount of sugar and must be avoided.
  3. Instead of artificial sugar, use of natural sugar products is much less harmful like fruits, etc.
  4. Having high sugar intake regularly leads to increased chances of diabetes, obesity and heart diseases.

Sugar is a carbohydrate that belongs to a class of sweet-tasting substances that are chemically related. It has 3 major types which include sucrose, fructose, and lactose. Glucose is essential for cells but having a high intake of sugar.

The daily intake of sugar

According to the American Heart Association (AHA), the recommended daily sugar intake should be 6 and 9 tablespoons for women and men respectively. Now if we consider that one tablespoon consists of 4g of sugar on average. It equals to about 24g and 36g of sugar form women and men respectively.

To better understand this, we look at some products that are commonly used. E.g. a 58 g of Milky way consists about 7 teaspoons of sugar and a 60 g bar of 3 Musketeers contains more than 8 teaspoons of sugar. Considering these numbers, we can see that consuming one bar of a milky way bar fulfills the daily requirement of sugar for a human body. Similarly, a 330ml can of Coca-Cola contains 7.25 teaspoons of sugar which itself is enough for one day of sugar consumption.

Fruits contain natural sugars which are much less harmful than the artificial sugar we consume so much. Even still, they contain less amount of sugars. E.g. A 100g serving of mango, banana or apple contains less than 3 tablespoons of sugar. This is comparatively less harmful and is also less in quantity.

Read also – Cheese Keeps a Check on Blood Sugar Levels, Researchers Say

The American heart association (AHA) asks to cut down the daily usage of a high quantity of sugar. They warn that it can lead to obesity. One of the major causes of obesity is carbonated soda. Another major disease lined to sugar is diabetes. Sugar does not directly lead to diabetes but people who consume more sugar are usually more overweight which eventually may lead to diabetes.

What to do now?

All comapnies should start adding labels on their products about the amount of artificial sugar they are mixing in it. As the natural sugar is not as harmful as the artificial one, so knowledge about the added sugar can help us choose better and healthier products. Many companies are starting to label their products according to the above-mentioned way. If we completely adopt this, then it would help us choose the right products.

 

Emma Colleen

Emma’s professional life has been mostly in hospital management, while studying international business in college. Of course, she now covers topics for us in health.

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