Nutrition

5 ways you're getting extra sugar without knowing it

©iStockphoto.com/YelenaYemchuk Author: Canadian Living Credits: ©iStockphoto.com/YelenaYemchuk

Nutrition

5 ways you're getting extra sugar without knowing it

You might have heard the recent cautions from health experts that we’re eating too much sugar but brushed them off because you don’t have a sweet tooth. The truth is, even those who don’t eat sweets are getting way more than the recommended six teaspoons (25 grams) of sugar. That’s because sugar is hidden in nearly every processed food we eat. Chances are, if it comes in a package, it’s loaded with sugar. Here are five ways you could be getting sugar without knowing it.

1. Savoury sauces
Since pasta sauce and barbecue sauce are savoury, they don’t contain sugar, right? Wrong. These sauces are actually some of the worst offenders when it comes to our sugar consumption. A half-cup of pasta sauce has about 12 grams of sugar, while the same amount of ketchup has about 27 grams, and barbecue sauce can have a whopping 44 grams. Even salad dressing can have up to nine grams of sugar per serving.

2. Yogurt
Yogurt has long been heralded as a healthy snack, but it might not be as wholesome as you think. While yogurt has some naturally occurring sugar, it’s also a huge culprit for added sugars, especially if it’s flavoured or has fruit mixed in. A tiny 170-gram single serving cup can contain your full day’s sugar intake, so if you love yogurt, opt for plain varieties and mix in your own fruit for flavouring.

3. Real fruit juices or leather

You know that sodas and sweetened juices aren’t good for you, but you might think you’re being nutritious by buying the stuff made of 100 percent real fruit. Unfortunately, once fruit has been stripped of its fibre and turned into something else (like juice or fruit leather), your body no longer sees it as natural fruit. That’s why the World Health Organization’s recommendations say that the 24 grams of sugar found in the standard cup of apple juice count towards your 25-gram daily limit of added sugars.

4. Bread, pizza and crackers
Almost all bread you buy will have some sugar in it, because sugar activates the yeast to make the bread rise, but when you read the package of bread—or  frozen pizza or any other bread product—you might be shocked to learn just how much sugar is hiding inside. A single bun might have four or five grams of sugar, and it’s easy to get the same amount in a serving of crackers—though chances are you’ll eat more than one serving.

5. Cereal and granola bars
You might think that if you’re not eating candy-coloured sugary cereals you’re in the clear, but unfortunately you need to look a little harder at the label to tell which cereals are chock-full of sugar. For example, did you know that a bowl of muesli can contain a day’s worth of sugar, and twice the amount as a bowl of Fruit Loops? And cereal bars or granola bars aren’t much better, with even the healthier versions coming in at half your day’s sugar. Try to make your own granola bars or muesli so you know how much sugar goes into them.

Are you eating too much sugar? Check out these tips on how to do a sugar detox.
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Nutrition

5 ways you're getting extra sugar without knowing it

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