1. The bitter sweet truth
In the UK, we consume over two million tonnes of sugar every year. Yet we often don’t know we’re eating it.
Most of us are aware that sweet stuff should be eaten in moderation. But some food and drinks contain a surprising amount of sugar, which means you could be consuming far much more than you should.
3. Manufacturers love sugar
Extra sugar is added to some products because it makes them taste better. When fat is removed from a processed meal, for example, sugar is often added to help disguise the blander taste.
Because of this, many foods we think of as wholesome – like yoghurt, granola bars, low-fat snacks and fruit-flavoured water – may actually contain much more sugar than we think
Like salt, these so called 'added sugars' help extend the shelf life of foods like bread, breakfast cereals and tinned fruit and vegetables.
This can result in us eating more sugar than our bodies can handle – because we don't always know when we're eating it.
4. The dangers of hidden sugar
If we consume more sugar than we need, our liver converts the excess into fat. Some of this fat is stored around the body.
This is why repeatedly eating too much sugar can lead to weight gain and even obesity, leading to an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and liver disease.
Tooth decay is also more likely, as bacteria in our mouths feast on the sugary foods we eat and produce acids that dissolve our tooth enamel.
5. Spotting high-sugar foods
Working out how much sugar is in your food or drink can be confusing, as it appears in many different guises, such as sucrose, glucose, fructose and honey.
Food manufacturers are not required by law to separate added sugars from naturally occurring sugars on a nutrition label, but you can find out how much total sugar is in a product by looking for the 'carbohydrates (of which sugars)' figure.
More than 15g of total sugars per 100g means it has a high sugar content, 5g of total sugars or less per 100g means it has a low sugar content.
6. Surprisingly sugary
How much sugar is packed in to these seemingly savoury foods?