What is a safe amount of added sugar to have each day?
It isn’t the consumption of sugar that leads to weight gain and other health problems; it is the over-consumption of sugar and added sugar in particular. Added sugar is added to food during production. Sugar (fructose) from fruit is your best choice because fruit provides vitamins, minerals and fiber. Of course, as we’ve recommended in our other articles about nutrition, consuming a protein or fat with fruit is best to stabilize blood sugar levels and satisfy hunger cravings.
According to the American Heart Association, the maximum amount of added sugars you should eat in a day are:
Men: 150 calories per day (37.5 grams or 9 teaspoons)
Women: 100 calories per day (25 grams or 6 teaspoons)
To put that into perspective, one 12-oz can of Coke contains 140 calories from sugar, while a regular-sized Snickers bar contains 120 calories from sugar.
In contrast, the US dietary guidelines advise people to limit their intake to less than 10% of their daily calorie intake.
It is important to note that there is no need for added sugars in the diet. The less you eat, the healthier you will be. Most Americans are consuming well over 75 grams of sugar daily, even children. Again, if you want something sweet, reach for the fruit bowl and combine it with a little protein or fat.