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The Hunt for Hidden Sugar

How Much of the Sweet Stuff is Hiding Your Foods?


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  • I try to stay away from sugar. I will put sugar in my coffee. If I have a crave for sugar I chew a piece of sugar free gum. - 4/27/2013 10:10:20 AM
  • BAM510
    I was very surprised you could not track sugar consumption on Sparkpeople. The Healthy Heart program I took told us up front to start tracking our sugar right away. At first I was totally shocked but now watch it very closely. Thanks for the article. - 4/25/2013 6:33:52 PM
  • These examples aren't very "hidden" to me. What I have recently found surprising are foods like ketchup, salad dressings, peanut butter, and even spaghetti sauce (really!) that are filled with sugar! I'd like more advice how to avoid truly hidden sugar. Currently, I look at labels. I started buying Trader Joe's spaghetti sauce because they don't add any sugar (or other chemicals/preservatives). You could also make your own. I make my own salad dressings using Greek yogurt, buttermilk, and ranch dressing spices, or oil and vinegar and spices. The one thing I'm struggling to give up - Nutella!!! I love it, but the first ingredient is sugar!! I've seen some recipes to make your own. I'll try it once I run out of my jar. - 9/14/2012 3:50:14 PM
    Like others have said, I don't think there's "hidden" sugar in the cakes, cookies, and candies shown in the chart. People may not be aware of how much sugar each contains but they know that they have sugar. An article like this could be much more helpful if it targeted foods that are considered healthy such as yogurts and whole grain cereals. They contain naturally occurring sugars but often have added sugars also.

    I'd like to see the SP Nutrition Tracker, or at least the daily reports, show how much sugar we are consuming. Since Sugars is a component in each nutrition information page I don't understand why its not available in the list of nutrients to track. - 9/5/2012 6:10:05 PM
  • WOW! I was expecting to read about food that have "hidden" sugar in them since the title of this article is The Hunt for Hidden Sugar. The author of this article seems to imply that we do not know that cakes and cookies are laden with sugar to begin with. Sugar is a primary ingredient in such items and the sugar is not hidden in them. Very disappointed with this article. - 9/5/2012 7:35:01 AM
  • Looking at the 1 fig newton, that seems out of whack. A single serving of regular fig newtons has 12 grams of sugar, less than 3 teaspoons. This serving size is 31 grams, which is more than one newton, probably around 2.5 newtons. This means one fig newton has a little more than one teaspoon of sugar. I am not saying they are good for you, just that this article is misleading here. See:
    =1&Product=4400002244 - 6/15/2012 7:47:14 AM
  • My new favorite sugar free syrupt is Mrs. Butterworth's! - 5/14/2012 3:22:14 PM
  • Yeah, these don't really seem like "hidden" sugars at all. Since when do people not now that cake, soda, and candy have sugar in them? Those are the obvious ones.

    I think some food items that would truly surprise people by their sugar content would be things like muffins, cereal, oatmeal, etc.

    There's also the hidden impact that certain high glycemic foods, while low in added sugars, have on blood sugar because of their high carbohydrate content... like whole grain wheat bread, brown and white rice, and pasta. Some people don't realize just how much of an impact these foods really have on blood sugar, as carbs are basically sugar in disguise. - 4/29/2012 7:29:33 PM
  • Did your doctor ever say to you, "I think you need a little more sugar in your diet?" I don't think so.
    We don't need ANY added sugar and it would be great if SP would make available the TOTAL grams of sugar we consume in a day - on our food tracker! - 4/24/2012 6:24:41 AM
  • I agree with those who think that 5 teaspoons of sugar a day are 5 teaspoons to much... - 3/14/2012 5:17:22 PM
  • This is a great article as many people are not aware of the effects sugar has on your body and how much is in almost everything we eat. On the hidden sugar chart however, those are foods you expect to find sugar in. I think it would have been most helpful to list foods that most people do not even think about having sugar or HFCS in them. Items such as condiments (mayo, ketchup, and relish), salad dressings and dips (even some hummus), regular peanut butter, coffee creamers, protein shakes, soups, crackers, oatmeal packets, breakfast bars and energy bars, and many more. Becoming aware of the hidden sugars and what to limit or avoid will help everyone greatly on reducing daily sugar intake.
    Thanks! - 3/14/2012 12:53:20 PM
  • One single Fig Newton has my recommended sugar intake for the day..... Thanks for opening my eyes to hidden sugar! - 3/14/2012 10:11:35 AM
  • I find the question of how much sugar I am consuming to be more complicated than I expected. I have completely cut out the foods listed in the table (cakes, cookies, pie, candy). But I don't really know how to track sugar in other foods I eat. Since I'm told not to worry about slowly absorbed sugars such as those in fruits and vegetables, perhaps I don't need to count those? (And, as others have commented, I should start looking out for truly "hidden" added sugars like those added to ketchup and pasta?)
    Or, I don't know, is it time to revisit the glycemic index and only choose foods that fall below a certain point on that index?
    So confusing. Another, detailed, article on this topic would be welcome. Thanks! - 3/14/2012 1:50:29 AM
  • I was also recently surprised and let down by how many grams of sugar are in a typical yogurt. For a friut choice (blueberry, strawberry, etc.) it's between 21 and 22 grams. That's over 5 teaspoons of sugar in one yogurt. Crazy! For something that is supposed to be good for you, this is so disappointing. I read labels on just about everything, but I never thought to check the sugars in yogurt. - 3/14/2012 12:31:43 AM
  • Hi!

    Could we have an article about hidden sugars in processed and unprocessed foods that are not sweet treats? Saavy dieters know about sugar in bread, cakes and cookies. What about the sugars in fresh vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, rice, peas, beets? What are substitutes for high-sugar vegetables? Are there fruits we should avoid because of high sugar content? Or more precisely, are there correct portion sizes for high-sugar products such as dried fruit? I have to admit, I was disappointed in this article. - 3/13/2012 5:56:51 PM

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