sugar-causes-weight-gain

Excess Sugar and Weight Gain in America

The consequences of excess sugar on your health

Picture this. Your favorite TV show is on. You’ve got a sweet tooth. You reach into the cupboard, grab the bag of sugar and a teaspoon, venture back to the couch, and dig in. After 22 excessively sweet teaspoons, you stop. Sound yummy? Probably makes your stomach hurt thinking about it.

Did you know that the average American consumes 22 tsps (88g) per day? That translates to an extra 350 calories per day! Tons of simple sugars are added into our foods and drinks to help with taste or texture of the food. You’re probably consuming more sugar than you thought possible and the health consequences are dangerous. Can you even imagine sitting down and eating 22 teaspoons of sugar?

Understanding Sugars

Sugar is a carbohydrate. There are good or naturally found sugars in fruits, vegetables, dairy, and whole grains – typically called complex carbohydrates. These are not dangerous to our health when consumed in a balanced diet. The bad sugars added to foods are simple carbohydrates, which are detrimental to our health.

How to spot the added sugars? Easy – check the ingredients. Words that end in “ose” are sugar. Sweeteners that contain simple sugar include, high fructose corn syrup, corn sweeteners, honey, molasses, and fruit juice concentrate.

Weight Loss Tip:
Try to avoid foods with added sugar – especially if sugar is one of the top 3 ingredients.


Daily Sugar Intake

The less added sugar we eat, the better. In the perfect world – you shouldn’t eat any added sugar.

The maximum daily amounts of added sugar you should consume

GenderTeaspoonsGrams
Men9 tsp36 g
Women6 tsp24g
Children3-4 tsp12-16g

1 teaspoon equals 4.2 grams of sugar.

Stay away from sugary drinks and cereals. They’re the most common sources of excess sugar. In fact sugary beverages are quickly becoming the #1 cause for weight gain in America.

 


The Dangers of Overconsumption 

There are no health benefits to the extra sugar. Added sugar is empty calories, with absolutely no nutrition.  Eating or drinking added sugar increases hunger and causes carb/sugar addiction. Studies have link excess sugar intake to the following health risks:

Health Risks in AdultsHealth Risks in Children
ObesityAttention problems
DiabetesInsomnia
Heart diseasesIncreased weight
Kidney diseaseTooth decay
Some cancers
Gout
Tooth decay

 

Hidden sugar in the American diet is a major culprit behind weight struggles. To avoid excess sugar in your diet, read the nutritional labels and then keep track of your daily intake with a food journal. You’ll probably be surprised at how much sugar you’ve unknowingly been consuming.

 

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