Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Sugar and the Brain, 3

How much refined sugar do you ingest on a daily basis? Some would answer, “I don’t add sugar to anything.” Maybe not, but unfortunately sugar is included in almost all packaged foods (e.g., candy, yeast bread, many ready-to-eat breakfast foods, deserts, and sodas). Estimates are that one can of regular soda contains seven teaspoons (140 calories) of sugar. Data from 31,000 individuals, who participated in the latest National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, were reviewed by researchers at CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). Analysis by researchers revealed some startling results. Participants who consumed 17%-21% or more of their total daily caloric intake in sugar, had a 38% increased risk of dying from heart disease. Note: not an increased risk of developing heart disease but a 38% increased risk of dying from heart disease. And the risk increased as sugar consumption increased. Participants who consumed more than 21% of their daily caloric intake from sugar, doubled their risk of dying from heart disease compared to participants whose daily sugar consumption was 8% or lower than total daily calories. Back to my opening question: How much refined sugar do you ingest on a daily basis? 

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