Foods That Are High In Sugar

Sugar comes in many forms and is found in a variety of foods. The simple carbohydrates that sugar is are used by our bodies to fuel them. Although natural sugars in foods such as fruit and dairy products can be part of a healthy diet, too much added sugar can be harmful to health, especially for people with diabetes.

According to the American Heart Association, healthy should consume less than 36 grams of sugar per day for men and less than 25 grams per day for women.

Why you should eat less sugar

Added sugars add extra calories to foods without also adding nutrients. As a result, people trying to lose weight may want to avoid foods that are high in sugar. People with conditions that affect blood sugar control, such as diabetes, should avoid sugary foods.

A sugary diet can affect many different systems of the body, including:

Weight control

Adding sugar to foods and drinks increases their calorie density without also increasing their nutritional value. Sweetened foods make them easier to eat. This can make it difficult to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.


Added sugars in the diet are associated. With an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Sugar consumption can also disrupt blood sugar control for diabetes.

Oral Health

All forms of sugar allow bacteria to multiply and grow, which leads to tooth decay. Consuming foods and drinks that contain natural or added sugars increases your chances of developing tooth decay, especially if you don’t practice good oral hygiene.

Foods with sugar

Sugar comes in a variety of forms, from natural sugars to sweeteners such as cane sugar and corn syrup. Some of the highest amounts of sugar come from these foods.

1. sugar cane

Cane sugar is the most common form of sugar found in packaged foods, baked goods, and some soft drinks. Cane sugar is derived from the sugar cane plant and contains sucrose which breaks down into glucose and fructose in the body, triggering an insulin response.

2. Honey

Honey is often considered a healthy alternative to sugar cane because it is naturally harvested from beehives and has some nutritional value. A main sugar source is fructose, which is sweeter than sucrose or glucose found in honey.

  1. Agave

Some people have started substituting cane sugar for agave syrup because it is supposed to have a lower glycemic index and therefore less prone to insulin spikes. Aloe vera, like honey, contains a higher proportion of fructose than cane sugar.

  1. Corn syrup

Corn syrup, especially high-fructose corn syrup, has been linked to increased obesity in the United States. This may be because the fructose in corn syrup does not indicate satiety as an equal amount of calories when eaten in a different form.

5. Brown rice syrup

Brown rice syrup or malt syrup is made by breaking down the starches in cooked rice. Very little research has been done on the health effects of brown rice syrup, but it is sometimes used as an alternative to corn syrup for baking and canned foods.

  1. Dairy

Lactose is the natural form of sugar in dairy products. Many have lactose intolerance, which makes it difficult to digest milk sugars.

  1. Fruit

All fruits contain a certain amount of natural sugars, or fructose. Some fruits, such as bananas, contain more sugar than others, such as berries. Since the fructose in the fruit is accompanied by fiber, it slows down the body’s response to insulin, making it a healthy alternative to added sugars.

  1. Coconut sugar

This sweetener is derived from palm sap, the sap from the coconut tree. It has recently gained popularity as a healthy alternative to cane sugar, although there is not enough research to support this claim. Like all types of sugars, coconut sugar should be used in moderation.

Sugar-free alternatives

Sugar-free alternativesIf you want to reduce your sugar intake, look for “no added sugar” on food packaging. These products may still contain natural sugar in the foods used to make them, but they will not have added sugar for flavor. The following foods are great options for a low-sugar or sugar-free diet:


  1. Vegetables

Compared to fruits, most vegetables contain less sugar. The amount of sugar varies in different types of vegetables. Mushrooms, spinach, kale, bean sprouts, celery, broccoli, cucumber, cauliflower, radish, and asparagus are among the vegetables with the lowest sugar content.

  1. Meat

Seafood, pork, beef, and chicken are sugar-free. It is also an important source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids.

  1. Beans, nuts and lentils

If you don’t eat meat, soybeans, lentils, beans, nuts and seeds are sugar-free and high-protein foods.

  1. Grain

Brown rice, quinoa, and oatmeal are delicious, low-sugar foods that will help you meet your recommended daily fiber intake.

sugar increase

This is why the Healthy Eating Pyramid states that sugary drinks and sweets should be used in moderation, if at all, and the Healthy Eating Plate does not include foods with added sugars.

The average,, and children in America consume about 17 teaspoons of added sugar per day, or about 270 calories.While we sometimes add sugar or sweeteners like honey to foods or drinks, most added sugar comes from processed and processed foods. The main sources of added sugars in the American diet are sweet and sugary drinks, desserts, and snacks such as ice cream, cakes, and biscuits. Less obvious but important factors are breakfast cereals and yogurt.

  • The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025 recommends that all Americans ages 2 and older limit added sugars in the diet to less than 10% of total calories. For a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet, that means 200 calories or 50 grams of sugar per day (about 12 teaspoons of sugar). Young children and infants under two years of age should not be given solid foods or drinks containing added sugars. 
  • The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends Americans significantly reduce added sugar to help reduce epidemics of obesity and heart disease.

The AHA suggests a stricter limit for added sugar of no more than 100 calories per day (about 6 teaspoons or 24 grams) for most adult women and no more than 150 calories per day (about 9 teaspoons or 36 grams) of sugar) for most women. men .

The American Heart Association also recommends a daily minimum added sugars for children ages 2 to 18 of less than 6 teaspoons or 24 grams per day, and sugar-sweetened beverages should be no more than 8 ounces per week. [3] For more information, visit the Healthy Kids Sweet Enough No Added Sugars website.

The main sources of added sugar

Sugary Drinks

Sugary drinks are a major source of extra calories that can contribute to weight gain and provide no nutritional benefit. Studies show that liquid carbohydrates, such as sugary drinks, are less satiating than solid foods, causing people to continue feeling hungry after drinking them despite their higher calorie intake. They are under scrutiny for their contributions to type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic conditions. 

An average 20-ounce bottle of sugar-sweetened soda, lemonade, or iced tea contains about 65 grams of added sugar, mostly from high-fructose corn syrup. This is equivalent to 16 teaspoons of table sugar.

If you drink one 12-ounce can of sugar-sweetened soda every day and don’t cut calories anywhere else, you could gain up to 15 pounds in three years. 

Be sure to read the portion sizes of packaged drinks. Many are sold in 20-ounce cans, but what counts as a serving of this drink can vary between manufacturers. For example, a popular cola might list a full 20-ounce bottle as a serving containing 65 grams of added sugar. Another 20-ounce bottle of lemonade might seem a better option, offering only 27 grams of added sugar per serving, but the label says one bottle contains 2.5 servings! So, eating the entire bottle gives you approximately 68 grams of sugar.

To reduce some of the confusion, the updated Nutrition Facts label requires manufacturers to list serving sizes based on what people usually eat, rather than how much they should eat. A “typical” serving size of drinks is now considered 12 ounces (an increase from 8 ounces), so hopefully in the near future all drink labels will list the same standard serving size.

Cereals and other foods

Choosing minimally processed breakfast foods, like whole-grain toast with nut butter, or a bowl of aged or steel-cut oats, which don’t have long ingredient lists, is a great way to avoid added sugars. Unfortunately, many common breakfast foods, such as ready-to-eat breakfast cereals, breakfast cereals, flavored instant oatmeal, and pastries, can contain significant amounts of added sugars.

Some ingredient lists mask the amount of sugar in the product. To avoid using “sugar” as the first ingredient, food manufacturers may use multiple forms of sugar. Each with a different name, and list each one individually on the nutrient label. Your body metabolizes all added sugars in the same way that it doesn’t distinguish between “brown sugar,” “molasses,” “honey,” and other calorie sweeteners. 

Also watch out for foods that carry a ‘health aura’. For example, one popular cereal advertises that it contains whole grains, fiber, and several antioxidant vitamins such as C, E and beta-carotene. Consider serving sizes, too. This crunchy granola bar can contain 2 pieces per package; Only one provides 6 grams of added sugar, but if you eat the whole package, that number doubles to 12 grams. So you can see how quickly added sugars can build up!

Some tips for reducing added sugar consumption:

  • Choose plain, sugar-free yogurt and add fresh or frozen fruit or unsweetened applesauce and a pinch of cinnamon.
  • Choose cereals with 5% of the Daily Value or less in added sugars and add sliced ​​ripe bananas or berries.
  •  The Choose water, mineral water, herbal tea, coffee and other drinks without added sugar. Add a slice of orange, lemon, lime or cucumber to subtly enhance the flavor.
  • When you have a sweet craving, try one of these first: 1/4 cup unsweetened dried fruit; 1 cup of fresh, ripe fruit or 1 square ounce of 75% dark chocolate.
  • 1/4-1/3 cup of added sugar can be reduced in baking. Or reduce the sugar by replacing half the amount with unsweetened applesauce or mashed ripe bananas; For example, instead of 1 cup of sugar, use 1/2 cup of sugar and 1/2 cup of mashed fruit.
  • If you choose to indulge in a favorite treat that is high in sugar. Practice eating a smaller portion than usual. Enjoy it thoroughly by chewing it slowly and tasting it.
  • Your taste buds can adjust to the sweetness levels! As you are steadily reducing your total sugar intake. You may notice that cravings for sweets are reduced or that some foods now taste too sweet.
Alfie Theo
Alfie Theo
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