A study reveals that consuming too much “free sugar” has 45 adverse health impacts.
According to a recent study, there are at least 45 good reasons to reduce added sugar intake.
Many studies have demonstrated the harmful effects of excessive sugar consumption on health, which has led to recommendations to keep “free” or added sugar consumption to less than 10% of a person’s daily calorie intake.
But, according to a study released on Wednesday in the journal The BMJ, researchers in China and the United States felt that the “quality of existing data needed to be extensively examined” before creating specific regulations for sugar restriction.
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High added sugar consumption was linked to significantly higher risks of 45 adverse health outcomes, including diabetes, gout, obesity, high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, cancer, asthma, tooth decay, depression, and early death, according to a large review of 73 meta-analyses that included 8,601 studies.
According to the US Food and Drug Administration, free sugars are those that are added when foods are processed, packaged as table sugar and other sweeteners, and naturally present in syrups, honey, fruit juice, vegetable juice, purees, pastes, and similar products where the cellular structure of the food has been broken down. Sugars that are present naturally in dairy products or in structurally entire fruits and vegetables are not included in this category.
A common food ingredient in processed goods is table sugar.
A common food ingredient in processed goods is table sugar.
According to the report, “sugar consumption and human health are currently the subject of a valuable overview of the science… Dr. Maya Adam, head of Health Media Innovation and clinical assistant professor of pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine, said that the study “confirms that eating too much sugar is likely to cause difficulties.” Adam wasn’t a part of the investigation.
“Studies like this are helpful in advising patients that seemingly small changes, like cutting out excess sugar like sugar-sweetened beverages, can have a marked and positive improvement to health,” said Dr. Leana Wen, a CNN Medical Analyst and professor of public health at George Washington University who wasn’t involved in the study.
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The people who consumed the most sugar-sweetened beverages had higher body weights than those who consumed the least, according to somewhat reliable data.
As a nutritionist who served on the 2010 and 2020 US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committees, Linda Van Horn of Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine said, “I can confirm that intake of dietary sugar in the US is more than twice the recommended amount (less than 10% of total daily caloric intake). And while the direct impact of sugar itself offers minimal, if any, nutritional benefits, it further replaces foods that do.” Van Horn didn’t take part in the investigation.
The relationship between sickness and sugar
Further research is needed, according to the study’s authors, as there has only been little and conflicting evidence linking free sugar to cancer. Yet, the study’s findings could be explained by the well-known effects of sugar on weight Excessive sugar intake has been linked to obesity, which is a significant risk factor for a number of malignancies. Cardiovascular illness is the same.
According to behavioral scientist Brooke Aggarwal, speaking to CNN in February, “added sugar intake can induce inflammation in the body, and this can cause stress on the heart and blood vessels, which can lead to elevated blood pressure.” The study excluded Aggarwal, an assistant professor of medical sciences in the cardiac department at Columbia University Irving Medical Center.
It has been discovered that highly processed foods, which can include a lot of free sugar, cause more inflammation, which is a risk factor for depression.
Adam stated to CNN in February that “whole food carbohydrates take longer to break down into simple sugars, and a part of them — the fiber — can’t be broken down at all.” This means that complete, undamaged grains don’t result in the same blood sugar rises that we get from eating simple sugars. Increases in blood sugar produce increases in insulin, which can destabilize blood glucose levels and, in the long term, be the root of health issues.
decrease in intake
In accordance with the research and current recommendations from the World Health Organization, World Cancer Research Fund, and American Institute for Cancer Research, people should keep their daily intake of free sugar to within 25 grams, or about 6 teaspoons. 2 12 chocolate chip cookies, 16 ounces of fruit punch, and roughly 1 12 tablespoons of honey all contain that much sugar. According to the Cleveland Clinic, there are roughly 15 to 30 grams of sugar in a doughnut.
Also, the authors advise limiting weekly intake of beverages with added sugar to no more than one serving (about 200 to 355 milliliters). That is comparable to a 12-ounce beverage, according to Aggarwal in an email.
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The authors believe that “a combination of comprehensive public health education and policy worldwide is urgently needed” to alter sugar consumption trends.
You can start making some adjustments on your own, though.
Read nutrition labels on all of your food purchases, including those you might not often consider to be sweet, such bread, breakfast cereals, yogurt, and sauces, to be conscious of what you’re putting in your body. According to Adam, these foods typically include a lot of added sugar, which adds up.
Instead of drinking sugary beverages, choose water that has been sweetened with fruit slices. For dessert, choose fresh or frozen fruit rather than cookies, cakes, or ice cream. One of the best strategies to lower sugar intake, according to Aggarwal, is to cook and bake more frequently at home.
Regularly getting adequate sleep of a high caliber would also be beneficial because, according to Aggarwal, “when we’re fatigued, we tend to eat things heavier in sugar.” You may train your taste buds to crave less sugar by gradually cutting back.
With less sugar in our diets, our lives will undoubtedly become sweeter, Adam added.