Timeless Nutrition Tip
A United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) sugar survey shows that sugar consumption has increased almost every year since 1982.
The sources of most of the sugar ingested came from cane and beet sugar, as well as corn syrup and corn sugar.
A large cause of the increase is due to the consumption of sugared soft drinks. The USDA advises people who eat a 2,000-calorie (per day) healthful diet to try to limit their sugar intake to about ten-teaspoons of added sugar daily. (The average American consumes around 20-teaspoons of added sugars daily, according to the USDA).
Calorie-dense foods, which are typically high in sugar and/or fat, contribute to obesity. Consider:
- Between 1976 and 1980 and 1988 to 1994, over-weight rates in teenage boys rose from 5-percent to 12-percent.
- In teenage girls over-weight rates rose from 7-percent to 11-percent, and in adults from 25-percent to 35-percent.
Sugar Content Variables
Baked Goods. Many baked products, beverages, and sweets are commercially sweetened and vary in amount and type of sugar. A beverage, for example, may contain sucrose or high fructose corn syrup or a combination of the two sweeteners. Thus, different brands of a single product may vary in content of glucose, fructose and sucrose.
Milk and Dairy. Sugar content of naturally aged cheeses may differ from processed cheeses because lactose continues to break down as cheese ages.
Fruits and Vegetables. Sugar content of fruits and vegetables varies depending upon cultivar, maturity, storage conditions and crop year. Total carbohydrate content includes other components such as dietary fiber, starch and other unaccounted for sugars and organic acids.