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The most effective way to reduce your sugar intake

Sucrose, glucose and fructose are found naturally in many foods but also added to processed products.

Of the three sugars, fructose has the sweetest taste but least impact on your blood sugar.

Glucose is used for energy right away or stored as glycogen. Fructose is converted by liver to glucose or stored as fat.

Fructose has been linked to several negative health effects, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, gout and fatty liver disease. Consuming fructose may also increase feelings of hunger and sugar cravings.


There is no need to avoid sugars that are naturally found in whole foods, such as fruits and vegetables. These foods also contain nutrients, fiber and water, which counter any of their negative effects.

The harmful health effects associated with sugar consumption are due to the high amount of added sugar in the typical Western diet.

A survey of over 15,000 Americans found that the average person consumed 82 grams of added sugars per day, or approximately 16% of their total calories — far more than the daily recommendation (22Trusted Source).

The World Health Organization recommends limiting added sugars to 5–10% of your daily calorie consumption. In other words, if you’re eating 2,000 calories per day, keep added sugars to less than 25–50 grams.

To put that into perspective, one 12-ounce (355 ml) can of soda contains about 30 grams of added sugar, which is enough to push you over your daily limit.

Sugars are not only added to foods that are obviously sweet like sodas, ice cream and candy, but also to foods you wouldn’t necessarily expect, such as condiments, sauces and frozen foods.

When buying processed foods, always read the ingredient list carefully to look for hidden sugars. Keep in mind that sugar can be listed by over 50 different names.

The most effective way to reduce your sugar intake is to eat mostly whole and unprocessed foods.


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