The American Heart Association recommends eating no more than 36 grams of sugar a day and women 20 grams. You may be surprised how much sugar is in common foods you thought were healthy. So you have an idea, one tablespoon is equal to 4 grams of sugar. Beware of labels that say fat-free, 100% juice, or 25% less sugar. Here are some foods and beverages that are surprisingly high in sugar:
- JUICE. Drinking juice is a megadose of sugar without all the beneficial fiber obtained when eating the whole fruit and can lead to sugar spikes and weight gain. Some juices can have up to 34 grams of sugar, which is equivalent to drinking soda or eating 5 chocolate chip cookies. Eat the whole fruit instead!
- YOGURT. Some yogurt such as Yoplait Flavored, Dannon Fruit on the bottom, StoneyField Organic Vanilla have about 26 to 29 grams of sugar which is equal to eating a twinkie. Even Activia is high with 19 grams for a smaller container. If you are a yogurt eater, buy PLAIN Greek Yogurt as an alternative and add fresh fruit or raw honey to eat to cut out a majority of the sugar. Plain yogurt has about 9 grams.
- CEREAL. Some processed cereals are about 40% sugar. Cereals that are processed are digested quickly, which spikes insulin levels and leave you feeling hungry sooner. Try making your own cereal. Rolled oats and barley are low in sugar and you can add your favorite whole fruit to it.
- APPLE SAUCE. Apple sauce bought in the store is usually sweetened and contain about 19 grams of sugar. Make your own in a blender, add a little cinnamon and enjoy the natural sweetness.
- SPAGHETTI SAUCE. Spaghetti sauce can contain up to 14 grams or more when purchased at the store. Make your own sauce with fresh tomatoes and spices from the cupboard and leave out all the added sugar.
- MILK. Milk can contain about 12 grams of sugar. Try substitution with a carrageenan free Almond Milk which has half the amount of sugar as real milk and just as much calcium.
- CONDIMENTS & DRESSINGS. Condiments and said dressings are packed with sugar and high fructose corn syrup to make them taste sweeter. Read the label carefully and try to make your own. There are a few healthier alternatives on the shelf if you read the label carefully.