You may have seen the news recently that sugar may be making you dumb as well as fat. Of course we expect a sugar rush from the usual suspects, but added sugars lurk in many packaged and restaurant foods, even in those that don’t taste sweet. This means your daily sugar intake may be higher than you ever imagined—filling you with empty calories that spike your blood sugar, pack on pounds, and increase your risk for high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. The American Heart Association says that adult women consume no more than six teaspoons of added sugar a day; men should have no more than nine teaspoons. So when I took a look at some common foods and compared them to the 10 grams sugar in a single glazed Krispy Kreme doughnut—the equivalent of two teaspoons—I was more than a little shocked...
Starbucks Java Chip Frapuccino (Grande, 16 oz.): 66 grams
No one's claiming this is a superfood, but 66 grams of sugar? Wow. You’d be far better off getting an iced coffee and sprinkling in a packet of sugar.
99% Fat-Free Strawberry Banana Yogurt (6 oz. serving): 27 grams
Don't be fooled by reduced- or low-fat labels, which may pack extra sugar. Try swapping nonfat fruit-flavored yogurt for nonfat Greek yogurt with a handful of your favorite berries mixed in. The latter is also higher in protein, which keeps you feeling full for longer.
Canned peaches (1/2 cup): 23 grams
You think you’re picking wisely by having fruit for dessert, but the syrups in canned goods can detract from the health perks. Pick whole, natural fruit instead.
Baked Beans (1/2 cup serving): 14 grams
At least canned foods give you a heads-up on their food labels. It’s a good idea to get in the habit of checking the sugar content of your supermarket staples and trying to cut back when you can.
Oat and Honey Granola Bar (2 bar serving): 12 grams
Granola bars scream healthy, but many of them boast a surprising amount of sugar. Granted, they’re healthier than, say, the 30 grams a Snickers bar packs, but still may not be the healthiest snack choice around.