May 23, 2014 / by Ann-Marie Giglio / No Comments

We’ve had some alarming news about sugar lately.  It is a much bigger health problem than previously thought.

According to a new government report published in the May issue of the National Center for Health Statistics Data Brief, young U.S. adults are consuming more added sugars in their food and drinks than older folks.  This puts them at greater risk for developing chronic conditions, conditions they will have to live with for the rest of their lives unless they change their habits..

Sugary sodas are most often blamed for added sugar in the American diet, but the new report showed that foods were the greater source. Only one-third of calories from added sugars came from beverages. The study showed that most of those calories were consumed at home as opposed to outside of the house.

Are you surprised?

We get all this sugar at the grocery store, and it’s not from bags of cane sugar.  Did you know that the food industry now has 56 different names for sugar?  56!  We’re used to seeing cane sugar, brown sugar, molasses, maple syrup, and honey. You may have noticed date sugar, sorghum, palm sugar, barely sugar, agave, beet root sugar, rice sugar syrup, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup–but how about these:  dextran, athyl maltol, treacle, panocha, lactose, sorbitol?

Start reading ingredient labels and you’ll notice them everywhere. It doesn’t sound like much, but if you use these products several times a day (flavored yogurt, granola, cereal, juice, bread, coffee flavorings, salad dressing, ketchup, nearly everything in a box, protein bars, gatorade, ready made frozen dinners, frozen vegetables with sauces, most frozen entrees, etc), and you do this 24/7, it definitely adds up. Throw in a soft drink or 2, and you’re on your way to the American average consumption of 150lbs of sugar per person per year!

Do your body a favor and start reading labels. Try to eliminate some added sugar each week. In a year,  you can make a huge difference.