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Winning the Low Sugar Challenge
Transcript of Winning the Low Sugar Challenge
You Can Do It!
What Are Added Sugars?
Why Avoid Added Sugars?
of added sugars has been linked to
intake of essential
(NCHS Data Brief No. 122 May 2013).
Increased body weight
increases risk for
which can lead to
diabetes, heart disease
of added sugars is linked to
reduced risk of CVD
in adults, and moderate evidence shows a
reduced risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and some types of cancer
in adults in cohort studies and clinical trials
the risk of
The NCHS Data Brief No. 122 can be found at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db122.htm
The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans can be found at: http://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/
The Elephant in the Room
Video by Nicole Avena, animation by STK Films.
How Much Sugar Do We Consume?
Average: 21 teaspoons
Average: 15 teaspoons
Chart found in NCHS Data Brief No. 122 at: http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db122.htm
Chart found in The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans at: http://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/
What is a reasonable intake of added sugar?
10 percent of total calories daily
Daily Added Sugar Limits:
Women: 6 tsp. (25g)
Men: 9 tsp. (38g)
Children: 3-6 tsp. (12-25g)
Recommended by the American Heart Association
Chart found on the The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans Website: http://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/
A healthy eating pattern you can follow every day to maintain a healthy body weight and lifestyle.
Finding Sugar on the Nutrition Facts Label
Image found at the State of Alaska Public Health website: http://dhss.alaska.gov/dph/PlayEveryDay/pages/How-to-Find-the-Added-Sugars.aspx
Recognizing Sugar by Many Other Names
Image found at http://revyourbev.com/the-issues/
Which one is the
best for me?
Image found at Phonesta.com: http://www.photonesta.com/how-many-teaspoons-in-1-gram-of-sugar.html
Making Sense of the Numbers
Recognizing Added Sugars in Food
Image found at Consumer Reports Website: http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/2012/05/where-sugar-hides-and-how-to-eat-less/index.htm
Video by Consumer Reports
Strategies to Reduce Sugar Intake
Get a nutrition
that measures sugar intake
Use more spices and seasonings
instead of sugar (or salt). Try some new recipes!
Feed cravings with fruit
Include more nutrient dense foods
More vegetables, fruit, and lean protein
Cut out high calorie nutrient poor foods:
Less sweets and snacks
Read the label on the container
Rethink your Drink!
Video by Consumer Reports
by Amber Brown, MPH, RD
A collaboration with the Westat Fitness Center
Sugar in any form added to foods
Contributes to the sensory qualities of food
Adds more calories without beneficial nutrients
Occur naturally in foods with other nutrients
Lactose in milk products
Fructose in fruit
Naturally Occurring Sugars
Sugar by another name is still sweet.
Generally Recognized as Safe
Amber, Thea, Viji, Susie, Deirdre
This presentation was presented on June 2, 2014 for the Westat Fitness Center in collaboration with Registered Dietitian Nutritionists from the Dietary Assessment Team who specialize in nutrition research. My background is in public health nutrition and health promotion. This presentation also includes my notes and the URLs to the source information. We hope you enjoy these tips to kick start your No Sugar- Low Sugar Challenge! ~Amber
Added sugars include all sugars used as ingredients in processed and prepared foods such as breads, cakes, soft drinks, jams, chocolates, and ice cream, and sugars eaten separately or added to foods at the table (NCHS Data Brief No. 122 May 2013). Added sugars are generally used as a sweetener and they affect the texture and color of some foods. They also contribute excess calories with little to no nutrients.
Let’s address the elephant in the room: The effect of sugar on the brain.
Data from the 2005-2010 NHANES survey show the average intake of added sugars per day in Americans. Men consumed an average of 335 kilocalories (kcals) from added sugars compared with 239 kcals for women. (NCHS Data Brief No. 122 May 2013). If look at it in terms of teaspoons, that is about 21 tsp. a day for men and 15 for women.
They also compared the source of the kilocalories between foods and beverages in 2009-2010. 52% of added sugars came from foods and 48% came from beverages.
The highest segment of foods with added sugar is snacks and sweets and the highest segment of beverages is sugar sweetened beverages such as soft drinks. So what items should you focus on when you are trying reduce added sugar in your diet?
This chart shows the Average intakes of Added Sugars as a Percent of Calories per Day by Age and Sex in comparison to the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommendation for less than 10 percent of calories daily. The orange dots show the average intake for males and females of every age is higher than the recommendation. The calories increase between age 1 to 18 and then begin to decrease. The blue dashed line in the middle of the chart represents 10 percent of total calories. That is what we should strive for.
The yellow line shows the recommended amount for 9 teaspoons per day for men and 6 teaspoons for women. This is a little more than half of the average intake on the chart. Our calorie needs drop with age, so of course if you can consume less over time it will be beneficial.
Part of creating a healthy eating pattern is to understand what foods fit into it. Reading nutrition labels is THE BEST way to do that. Learning how to find sugar on the nutrition facts label will help you determine which foods to avoid.
The amount of sugar appears on the label under Carbohydrates as Sugars in grams. This includes sugar that naturally occurs in the food and sugar that was added to the food in its current state. When the new nutrition fact labels come out in the future, added sugar will be listed separately. In the meantime, you will have to read the ingredient list to find the added sugars. Ingredients are listed from most to least. If sugar is the first ingredient, then it is the main ingredient in the food. You want to skip a food like this. It will be difficult to avoid all added sugar, but as more informed consumers you can make better decisions.
When you are trying to cut back, it is important to recognize sugar by the many other names that appear on food labels. There are at least 61 different names you might see!
They come in different forms and they have different properties. There are too many to compare, but let’s just talk about honey versus plain white table sugar. Table sugar has 16 kcal per teaspoon and honey has 21. Honey has amino acids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Table sugar does not. Plus, honey has other health benefits that table sugar is not associated with. These things are all true.
If we just compare them on the basis of calories from added sugar, they are not different. You may prefer to eat honey instead of table sugar for the associated benefits. However, if you are looking to reduce your calories from added sugar, you need to reduce your intake of both.
That begs the question of sugar substitutes. There are many types out there. Compared to table sugar, an equivalent amount is generally many times sweeter than sugar. These generally do not contribute added calories and they are generally recognized as safe for most people. If you want to use these as a transition to less sugar that is possible, but there are some studies showing that some people do not have good results with these.
We know that some foods don’t have labels. If it doesn’t have package then you will have to use your sleuthing skills or use common sense. You can ask the person who prepared the food, look on the website for the nutrients, look it up on a food tracker, or compare it to similar food. If it tastes sweet, it is safe to assume there is sugar in it. You will not be able to tell if it’s added or not. This tends to be true for foods that are commercially made or covered in some type of sauce.
Remember the target amount for women 6 teaspoons or less and 9 teaspoons or less for men.
It is very important to remember that added sugars are in nearly all foods, especially processed foods.
Let’s look at some examples in this picture. We expect beverages with sugar added to have a lot of sugar. But the applesauce and the yogurt are examples that have both natural and added sugars which turn out to be a lot. When the labels do not clearly identify the added sugars for you, it is easier to reduce added sugars by reducing your overall intake of sugar in general.
Clearly, we have to be aware of where the sugar is coming from in order to reduce our intake.
There are lots of healthy helper gadgets out there. Trackers are great ways to get reminders and alerts and to monitor your progress. If that will help you stay on track, do it! The apps can help you identify the amount of total sugar in foods or even create a low sugar diet for you. Here’s a few that I found.
You know the saying, out of sight out of mind? Create a supportive nutrition environment for yourself. Dump out the candy bowl and put it a drawer. Don’t bring problem foods into the house. Put your better choices out in the open, like a fruit bowl on the counter. These types of actions will help you reach your goal.