Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Probably most of my Sparkfriends have seen the news about the American Heart Association's new campaign to decrease U.S. sugar consumption:
"In a scientific statement issued Monday, the organization says most women should limit their sugar intake to 100 calories, or about six teaspoons, a day; for men, the recommendation is 150 calories, or nine teaspoons.
"The recommendations are likely to prove challenging for many consumers to meet. Just one 12-ounce can of cola has about 130 calories, or eight teaspoons of sugar.
"Data gathered during a national nutrition survey between 2001 and 2004 suggest that Americans consume on average 355 calories, or more than 22 teaspoons, of sugar a day."
Just last week my husband & I agreed that henceforth we will avoid desserts except on weekends--for the time being at least. Interestingly, this is harder for him to deal with than for me, even though I'm more of a chocolate fiend than he is. On Saturday he said rather huffily, "Well, if we're going to limit desserts to weekends, we should plan a really GREAT dessert!" I ended up making a fruit crisp using the last of the peaches & blueberries we had bought at a Michigan farmstand the previous Sunday. It was truly yummy.
And I just did some rather convoluted calculations revealing that since I ate just over 2 servings out of 10, my share of the 7/8 cup of sugar in the recipe came to about 9 teaspoons. Not bad for extra sugar eaten in the course of two days.
On no-dessert days, since I don't drink soda or fruit drinks (except for 100% juice in small quantities), my only added sugar is the 2-3 teaspoons of honey or agave nectar I put on my homemade muesli. However, the Heart Association says that the sugars in alcohol should be counted as well. Those don't show up in the SP nutrition tracker. I am limiting my alcohol carefully these days too, but it would be nice to know. Anyone know how to figure out alcohol sugars?