Sugar, sugar

The American Heart Association released a new guideline on dietary sugar intake in August 2009. Since 1970 dietary sugar intake has increased by 19%, adding about 76 calories per day. Soft drinks and other sugar-sweetened beverages are the prime source of these added sugars. Excessive consumption of added sugars is contributing to the overconsumption of discretionary calories and contributing in part to the obesity epidemic we are facing. This amount of extra calories per day (76 calories) can lead to a gain of 3.4 kg (7.5 lbs.) of weight over 1 year if nothing else were to change. In view of these considerations, the American Heart Association recommends a reduction in the intake of added sugars.

A prudent upper limit of added sugar intake is half of the discretionary calorie allowance, which is no more than 100 calories per day for women and 150 calories per day for men. One 355 mL (12 ounce) can of pop is roughly 130 calories. So as it has been said, set your limit of one can per day and stay within it, or better yet, avoid sugar-added drinks altogether.

The guideline is available in Circulation 2009;120:1011-1020 or online at reprint/CIRCU LATIONAHA.109.192627.

—Ron Wilson, MD

Ron Wilson, MD, CCFP. Sugar, sugar. BCMJ, Vol. 51, No. 8, October, 2009, Page(s) 356 - News.

Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.

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