Livi’s doctors tell you how much sugar you should not exceed each day and help you find easy ways to reduce your daily intake.
Is sugar consumption dangerous?
Having a healthy diet means above all having a balanced diet. Sugar is ubiquitous in the typical Western diet, so it’s hard to avoid it entirely. Many products such as sauces, soups, ready meals, and yogurts contain “hidden” sugars. Sugar is also found naturally in foods such as milk, fruit and vegetables, but this type of sugar is not a problem when consumed in reasonable amounts. It’s the added sugars or “free sugars” that you have to watch out for.
A diet rich in added sugars can be the cause of many chronic diseases such as obesity, cardiovascular disease or diabetes.
Why reduce sugar consumption? Fight against overweight and obesity.
Reducing sugar intake can help prevent obesity. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), obesity has tripled worldwide since 1975. Although a number of factors can lead to obesity, such as lack of physical activity or even psychological disorders, high sugar intake also plays a role. Sugar is high in calories and has no nutritional value. It can also have a long-term effect on the way our bodies produce insulin, one of the main hormones in our metabolism. This is because when you eat sugar, your body releases insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that your body uses to process sugar. This causes a rapid rise in blood sugar levels, called blood sugar.
When this process is frequent and habitual, it can result in consistently high insulin levels. This can lead to a condition known as insulin resistance, in which the body no longer responds to insulin as it should – the pancreas has to produce more and more, which can be a precursor to type 2 diabetes. This process can also lead to weight gain, especially around the abdomen (visceral fat). Abdominal fat is associated with an increased risk of diseases such as heart disease. If you think you are overweight or obese, a Livi doctor can advise you on healthy weight loss.
Avoid chronic inflammation
Sugar stimulates the production of fatty acids in the liver, which produces compounds that can cause inflammation. Inflammation is part of the body’s natural defense mechanisms. This is how the immune system recognizes and eliminates harmful stimuli and promotes healing. This is called acute inflammation, it can take the form of swelling, pain or a rash.
Silent (slow and prolonged) chronic inflammation occurs when this process continues in the body, after the external signs have disappeared. It has been associated with an increased risk of developing diseases, including cardiovascular disease. By reducing your sugar intake, you reduce the risk of your body developing this type of chronic inflammation and increase your chances of maintaining better long-term health.
have better skin
Therefore, eating too much sugar can lead to inflammation and insulin resistance, which can have a negative effect on our skin. A recent study shows that there is a link between insulin resistance and acne. According to this study, excess insulin can lead to the production of androgens (male hormones), which in turn can cause increased production of sebum (oily secretion) in the skin pores and trigger acne.
Being in a good mood
Cutting back on sugar might improve your mood. While a sugary treat can give you a quick boost when you’re feeling down, eating too much sugar can affect your mood in the long run. Foods high in sugar can lift your spirits or give you energy when you need it when you’re tired. But they can also cause blood sugar to drop when their effects wear off, leaving you with cravings. It can become a vicious cycle of lack of sugar that is difficult to break.
By replacing sugary, processed foods and snacks with whole foods and complex carbohydrates, you’re giving your body a long-lasting form of energy. This means fewer cravings, or ups and downs, throughout the day, and in turn, you may find that you’re more focused and in a better mood.
Reduce the risk of dental caries
Tooth decay affects 80% of the world’s population, and research shows that dietary sugar is the biggest risk factor for tooth decay. The researchers concluded that brushing your teeth can only partially reduce the impact of cavities and that reducing sugar remains the best way to reduce the risk of cavities, especially in children.
How much sugar to consume per day?
The WHO recommends that free sugars represent no more than 10% of daily energy intake, although ideally free sugars should be reduced to 5% of total energy intake.
This therefore means that:
- The adults you should not consume more than 30 g of free sugars per day (about 7 sugar cubes);
- Children from 7 to 10 years you should have no more than 24 g of free sugars per day (6 sugar cubes);
- Children from 4 to 6 years old You should have no more than 19 g of free sugars per day (5 sugar cubes).
There are no guidelines for children under 4 years of age, but it is recommendedavoid drinks and foods with added sugars.
Did you know
- A Coca-Cola bottle of 500 ml. contains the equivalent of 54 g of sugar or 13.4 teaspoons of sugar.
- A typical chocolate bar of 45 g contains approximately 6 teaspoons (24 g) of sugar.
- Y medium glass of white wine contains about 7.5 g of sugar, or just under 2 teaspoons of sugar.
- 100 ml sweet fruit juice they contain 9.8 g of sugar, or just under 2.5 teaspoons of sugar.
- Y yogurt with fruit contains about 16.6 g (per 100 g), or just over 4 teaspoons of sugar.
How to reduce the daily intake of sugar?
Always check nutrition labels on foods:
- High-sugar foods contain more than 22.5 g of total sugars per 100 g.
- Low-sugar foods contain 5 g or less of total sugars per 100 g.
Watch out for hidden sugars in savory or sweet sauces, salad dressings, ready meals, yogurts, takeouts, pizzas, and soups.
Beware of sugars with another name
Many food labels list added sugars in different ways, but they always have the same effects. The following terms suggest the presence of added sugars:
- crystals of juice, sugar or cane;
- Sweetie ;
- Dextrose or dextrin?
- Fructose concentrate or fruit juice;
- Sugar (palm, raw, beet, brown, invert);
- Syrup (corn, maple, rice, barley, malt);
Try some simple sugar swaps.
Here are some alternatives to reduce your daily sugar intake:
- Instead of sugary sodas, opt for water with a squeeze of lemon or a few slices of cucumber or strawberries for flavor.
- Replace sugary cereal with a bowl of sugar-free oatmeal with a handful of berries.
- If you’re used to flavored yogurts, plain Greek yogurt topped with fresh fruit is a great alternative.
Eat to keep blood sugar levels stable.
Eating regularly helps keep blood sugar levels stable:
- Choose complex carbohydrates instead of refined carbohydrates; These include foods like brown rice, whole wheat or sourdough bread, quinoa, and whole wheat pasta.
- Include some protein at every meal, such as lean meat, chicken, fish, eggs, tofu, or legumes like chickpeas and lentils.
Replace sugary snacks with healthier snacks.
Pack healthy snacks for when you get hungry between meals so you don’t crave chocolate or candy. Here are some suggestions:
- Nuts and seeds;
- Raw vegetable crudités with hummus;
- a handful of red berries;
- Apple slices with a teaspoon of nut butter;
- 2 oatmeal pancakes with hummus or nut butter;
- A small pot of white cheese;
- A natural yogurt with berries, nuts and seeds.