Lehigh Valley

World Health Organization issues new sugar intake guidelines

World Health Organization issues new sugar intake guidelines

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - It's a sad day for the sweet tooth; the World Health Organization has drafted new proposals that say sugars should make up just five percent of your daily calorie intake.

The agency previously recommended a 10 percent sugar diet.

Under the new guideline, for an average 2,000 calorie diet, that equals out to just six ounces, or 25 grams a day.

It means an average person would use up nearly two days worth of sugar by drinking just one can of soda, which contains 40 grams of sugar.

"More and more of the food we eat is processed…and that's where we are seeing a larger intake of sugars in this country," said Jacqui Jarrett, Registered Dietitian.

The guideline applies to added sugars, and those in honeys, syrups, and juices.

It does not include the natural sugars in fruits.

Jarrett said foods with natural sugars are the better pick.

"More vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, antioxidants, all of those things," Jarrett said.

Jarrett said cutting out sugar won't be easy for most people.

But she hopes the new sugar guidelines, coupled with the Food and Drug Administration's proposed changes to food labels, will make people more aware of how much and what kind of sugar they're eating.

There's talk the new labels will segregate natural and processed sugars.

Jarrett said a high-sugar diet often correlates with obesity.

She said obesity increases a person's risk of developing serious chronic diseases like heart disease, hypertension and diabetes.

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