The American Health Association recommends a daily sugar intake of 25 grams per day for women and 37.5 for men—sounds fair, right? What’s not fair is that you’re unknowingly surpassing those values every day with foods that trick you into believing they’re sugar-free. Discover some of the “healthy” foods that add more sugar than you need.
Wait, what? How can this be unhealthy, you might wonder. Well, it’s not only made with oats, nuts and seeds. Look out for sugary additions like brown rice syrup, molasses, corn syrup, evaporated cane juice, or rice malt syrup; which won’t do you any good.
Thought this is a great post-workout refuel? Sorry to disappoint you, but this is an undercover sugar agent. Many ingredients used to add flavor also add tons of sugar—even more than your regular go-to candy bar.
Yogurt is thought of as a dairy good breakfast option because it provides tons of nutrients, but try to stay away from those that contain fruits or honey. Even their light versions sneak in extra sugar.
Don’t picture a world where your pizza or pasta won’t be served without tomato sauce just yet. Tomatoes are naturally sweet; it’s no wonder tomato sauce will also carry a sweet side, too: watch your serving or choose brands with a lower input.
We’ve all relied on canned or box soup for a quick lunch before, but they are as sugary as they are convenient. Choose the ones without or with as little sugar, cane sugar, evaporated cane juice or fructose corn syrup and you’ll be fine.
You would expect anything next to the word “salad” being a healthy choice, but this in not the case. All the effort you put into eating green goes to waste with this sugary liquid: try to prepare your own so as to avoid unnecessary additions of fructose corn syrup.
Regular oats are fine, but you will probably choose the more sugary versions at the supermarket. Check the label for ingredients like brown sugar or apple cinnamon which make your oats taste so much better but definitely increase your sugar intake, bite after bite.
Convenient? Yes. Healthy? Not as much. These friendly quick fixes sneak in a lot of sugar in the form of fruit juice concentrates, high fructose corn syrup or dextrose. Stay away from those that have an Asian touch with teriyaki, sesame or sweet-and-sour sauces because they’re extra sugary. No wonder they taste so good.
You do need an extra sugar kick after a hard workout to recover, but these drinks have way too much of it. If you didn’t work out for over an hour, you don’t really need these; if you did, try coconut water, which is packed with those electrolytes you lose while exercising.
Unless these are truly all natural—like you literally squeezing the juice out of your fruits—, stay away from fruit juices. Instead of using fruits, most of these drinks are prepared with sugary ingredients for extra flavor.