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Patient Education

Psssssssst—Secret Sugar

Spoon in a Bowl of SugarLurks in Every Pantry

Your sugar bowl sits on the table, and you lift its lid only to sweeten your morning coffee. You deserve a medal for exemplary nutritional behavior!

Are you sure? Most folks eat more sugar than they realize—150 pounds per year average. That’s 6 ounces—3/4 of a cup—every day.

Two-thirds of Americans are overweight, many of them children. Doctors predict that an epidemic of diabetes will follow the obesity epidemic.

Lose that sugar bowl and you still consume sugar in cakes, pies, and cookies. Ditch the desserts and your sugar intake remains high. What’s going on?

Here’s what—sugar is added to canned fruits, vegetables, soups, breakfast cereals, gravies, sauces, meats, salad dressings, rice and pasta mixes, condiments like mayonnaise, steak sauce, and ketchup, cough drops and syrups, and such “health foods” as granola bars, yogurt, and whole wheat bread.

Beverages add more sugar to your intake, be they sodas, fruit juices, sport drinks, smoothies, even vitamin drinks.

Read the labels on everything and learn sugar’s many aliases—brown sugar, raw sugar, cane sugar, corn syrup, molasses, sorghum, dextrose, glucose, and fructose. All can be harmful to your health.

As well as dental concerns such as cavities and tooth decay, sugar intake has also been linked to conditions like heart disease and diabetes. Coupled with low mineral levels, it may contribute to cancer and aging.

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