It has been estimated by the United States Department of Agriculture that the average American consumes between 130 and 170 pounds of sugar per year. At the turn of the 20th century the average consumption was recorded at 40 pounds per year. Now this begs the question whether the increase in diabetes, obesity and several other health problems over the last couple of decades is merely a coincidence? I don’t think so. The inconvenient truth is that something as innocent as a grain of sugar has been scientifically proven to be just as addictive as cocaine and food manufacturers are exploiting this legal drug.
The biggest culprits are soft drinks, which make up about 33% of overall sugar intake for the average American. People who argue that switching to energy drinks are healthier would be wrong, because energy drinks pretty much consist of water, sugar and artificial flavors. In fact, manufacturers are hiding sugar in products we never even thought contained sugar in the first place, such as almond milk, ketchup, barbecue sauce, salad dressings, packaged meats and too many more to list here.
In order to save money, food industries started to replace sugar with fructose corn syrup. Corn syrup, which looks like honey, is 24% water and 76% sugar. To make matters worse, 83% of teenagers go to a school where soft drinks, energy drinks and candy are actively promoted. The constant advertising on television, radio and the internet is astonishing. It shouldn’t be difficult to understand why so many people are struggling to lose weight. It’s in their faces constantly, they are tricked into thinking some things are healthy and they are consuming sugar without even knowing it.
There is no pretty way to say that a high intake can lead to death. According to a 15 year long Harvard study, the current levels of sugar intake doesn’t just add 10% of calories per day, but it also doubles your chances of dying from heart disease. As well, more than 10 million Americans suffer from some form of diabetes and about 4 million more are unaware they even have it. If it wasn’t for Mexico, America would be on top of the list for the country with the highest obesity rates, and everyone knows the consequences of being obese. Sugar ultimately creates an imbalance in the body that can lead to organ failure and several other pathological conditions.
And don’t get me started on artificial sweeteners as they are even worse!! I’ll cover more of that in another post.
But there are solutions. Ways you can have your cake and eat it without the health risks. Check out the section of this website called Sugars and Sweeteners for some great solutions.