Added Sugar in the Diet

Role of High Fructose Corn Syrup in our Sugar-Obsessed World

It is important to stay mindful of the calories that come from added sugars and sweeteners as they are a significant contibuter to the obesity epidemic.  With the addition of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) to our food supply 30+ years ago, we learned that something sweet and seemingly indulgent could come at a fraction of the cost of harvesting sugar cane (thanks in large part to government subsidies of the corn and soy industry, but that's a blog for another day).  And so HFCS began to sneak into hundreds of products in the marketplace.

The business of agriculture now produces approximately 17.5 billion (!) pounds of HFCS annually.  In fact the use of HFCS has become so insidious in food production you'll be hard pressed to find a loaf of bread or box of cereal without it listed as an ingredient.  While the message is getting out to the masses regarding sugar-sweetened beverages and sodas, I challenge you to begin to look at other sources of added sugar in the diet.  

Recommendations

The American Heart Association recommends no more than 6 teaspoons (27 grams) of added sugar daily for women and no more than 9 teaspoons (41 grams) of added sugar daily for men.  For the sake of comparison, the average American consumes 23 teaspoons (104 grams) of added sugar.  Check out this fantastic infographic from CSPI on added sugars!