Think Before I Drink

Posted 03/13/2018 | By HealthCorps

Learn about the importance of reducing sugar

(adapted from the HealthCorps curriculum)


How Your Sweet Tooth is Harming You

Did you know that Americans consume on average of 150-170 pounds of refined sugar every year? Added sugars are caloric sweeteners that are either added to foods during processing and preparation or consumed separately. While we consume so much sugar, we actually don’t need any added sugar! In fact, eating too much sugar can be harmful to our health. For example, sugar increases our risk for:

  • unwanted weight gain or obesity
  • type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic illnesses
  • cavities

For more information on the effects of sugar, check out this Ted-Ed video: Here

Be Smart About What You Drink    

If sugar is that harmful for us, how much sugar can we consume? Women should try to limit their consumption to 25 grams (about 6 teaspoons) per day, and men no more than 36 grams (about 9 teaspoons) per day. One way to reduce the amount of sugar you consume is by drinking less sugary drinks. Choosing not to have that soda or sweetened tea with your meal can have a bigger benefit to your health than you realize! Instead of a sugary drink, try choosing water instead. Water is an essential nutrient for our health, and it has absolutely no calories or sugar! In addition to water, here are some other drinks with less or no sugar you could try:

  • Water with cucumbers, lemon, berries, or mint
  • Unsweetened seltzer water/unflavored sparkling water
  • Unsweetened tea
  • Unsweetened coffee
  • Milk
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