Unreal how much sugar we eat. This graph is very depressing because back in 1822, the average American consumed 45 grams of sugar, the amount found in one of today’s 12-ounce sodas, every 5 days. Today (2012), we consume 765 grams of sugar every 5 days. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 9.5 teaspoons per day. The average adult consumes 22 teaspoons per day and the average child consumes 32 teaspoons per day. This added sugar accounts for nearly 500 calories every day! Plus, refined sugar has no nutritional value. Refined sugar is linked to obesity, hypertension, high blood pressure, hypoglycemia, depression, headaches, fatigue, nervous tension, aching limbs, diabetes, acne, skin irritation, stiffening of arteries and violent behavior. Check out onlinenursingprograms.com for the full graph.
Here is a chart from Harvard University which shows how much sugar there is in everyday drinks.
How can we cut out sugar from our diets? Here are some tips to help lower your sugar intake:
1. Buy plain yogurt. The flavored or fruit yogurts contain about 20+ grams of sugar. You can add cinnamon and fresh fruit instead.
2. Avoid packaged foods
3. Switch to almond milk
4. Read labels
5. Limit sauces – most sauces, such as ketchup contain added sugar. One tablespoon of ketchup contains 1 teaspoon of sugar
6. Avoid items that are “fat free” such as fat free peanut butter, or fat free pretzels because sugar is added
7. Remove sweets from your home. If they aren’t within arms reach, you won’t be as tempted to eat them. If you want a dessert, go out on a date and split one.
8. Eat your fish! Wild caught salmon is full of omega 3 fatty acids, which helps prevent cravings for sugar
9. Don’t feel bad about saying “no” at birthday parties
10. Cut out drinking soda, sports drinks, and juices from your diet (this includes juice boxes for kids)
11. Sweeten desserts with raspberry or date syrup and use the fruit syrup on your waffles and pancakes too. Mix one cup of raspberries with one teaspoon of cinnamon and cook until thick. Do the same with the dates, but add a little water.