Yesterday, the American Heart Association (AHA) released a scientific statement recommending the reduction of added sugar consumption indicating that there is a high correlation of metabolic abnormalities, adverse health conditions, and shortfalls in essential nutrients with excessive sugar intake. This marks the first time the AHA has recommended specific limits on the consumption of added sugars according to an article posted on the AHA’s website (Click here to read it.)
According the AHA, Americans are consuming on the average 22 teaspoons (approx 108 grams) of sugar per day, and it is recommending that women should have no more than 6 teaspoons (approximately 30 grams) of sugar and men no more than 9 teaspoons (approximately 44 grams) of sugar. The AHA also tries to make a distinction between naturally occurring sugars such as those found in fruits and vegetables with highly processed sugars such as refined sugars and syrups indicating the more highly processed sugars are linked to the rise of obesity, as well as high blood pressure, high triglyceride levels, in addition to higher risk for heart disease, stroke, and inflammation.
The biggest culprit for the high amounts of the processed sugar occurring in the American diet are soft drinks and other sugar sweetened beverages. To put this into perspective, a 12 ounce can of Coca-Cola possess 39 grams of sugar. This exceeds the daily recommendation for women and doesn’t leave much room for more sugar for men according to the AHA’s recommended sugar guidelines. A 20 ounce bottle of Coca-Cola has 69 grams of sugar, more than double the recommended sugar level for women and more than 20 grams more sugar than recommended for me.
Naturally, the Sugar Association, a trade-industry group for the manufacturers in the sugar industry have taken issue with the AHA’s report since it clearly labels sugar as a dangerous product that people should limit their consumption of. Their claim is that the AHA’s report lacks a “higher standard of evidence” and is misleading consumers. They also contend that the attempt to lay blame on sugar containing foods will fail in much the same way the efforts to lay blame on fat containing foods as a cause for obesity failed in the 1990’s. Keep in mind that the Sugar Association’s sole purpose is to promote the consumption of sugar so it’s response in opposition of the AHA’s report is entirely expected. Click here if you’d like to read the Sugar Association’s response to the AHA’s report.
Similarly, the American Beverage Association, a trade association for the soft drink manufacturers also takes issue with the AHA’s report, however, they don’t seem to feel quite as victimized by the AHA’s report as the Sugar Association does. They state that while soft drinks and other sugar sweetened beverages are a source of calories, they, “in and of themselves, are not a unique risk factor for obesity or other negative health outcomes – including heart disease.” They add that both obesity and heart disease are complex problems advocated calorie balance and that there is no single cause nor solution for each issue. They also add that they advocate the consumption of soft drinks and other sugar sweetened beverages in moderation as part of a healthy balanced lifestyle. The American Beverage Association’s response to the AHA’s report can be seen by clicking here. Their response is much classier than the Sugar Association’s response in that they are reiterating the AHA’s findings that no one source is likely the cause of the various diseases and they also advocate the enjoyment of their products in moderation.
Looking at the two responses, it is almost comical how the Sugar Association appears to have declared war on the AHA’s report and have attacked the report in attempt to discredit the report entirely. They clearly disagree with the findings of the AHA and won’t even acknowledge that sugar is a contributing factor in any way, shape, or form. They clearly must have hired the same lawyers as the tobacco industry. The American Beverage Association on the other hand, offer a far classier response. They just reiterate what the AHA have found and that no one product category is solely responsible for the health conditions stated in the report and that they too also advocate moderation of their products so that they can be incorporated into a healthy lifestyle. They aren’t arguing with the report, just essentially saying it’s possible their products may be contributing, but if you’re only enjoying the products from time to time, it shouldn’t be a serious problem.
In April, when I joined a testimonial case study group for Jorge Cruise’s Belly Fat Cure program, which advocates cutting sugar consumption down to no more than 15 grams of sugar a day, which is approximately 3 & 1/2 teaspoons of sugar. This is the recommended amount for both men and women, which is less than the AHA’s recommendation of 6 teaspoons for women and 9 teaspoons for men. Unlike the AHA’s report, Jorge’s program makes no distinction between natural sugars from fruits and vegetables and those of refined sugars. To successfully lose weight and restore optimum health to your body, sugar consumption needs to be dropped to no more than 15 grams of sugar per day, and optimally, it should be no more than 5 grams of sugar per meal assuming three meals a day. Once your goal weight is reached you can reintroduce some natural sugars, but again, you want to keep your intake around the 15 gram per day mark.
By following Jorge Cruise’s recommendation, I have effortlessly shed over 54 pounds in 16 weeks. It’s been an amazing program that has literally changed my life. I take issue with the Sugar Association’s response because their accusatory denials that their product is a contributing problem to the modern health issues of obesity, and heart disease, and attempts to discredit the information are not serving the public’s health overall. They need to take a page from the American Beverage Association where they acknowledge that it’s possible their products contribute to the problem and they may not, but a lifestyle using their products in moderation can be quite healthy.
The sugar industry has gotten too much of a free ride in that the public concern has been on the fat content of food products and despite the introduction of low fat products, the obesity issue in America has gotten worse, not better. Sugar on the other hand is perceived to be innocent maybe in part because refined sugar in its granulated form resembles snow. Snow is considered pure and natural and by association, people extend that same perception to sugar. Our society always associates the good guys with images of white where the bad guys often are associated with dark colors.
Thanks to Jorge Cruise who enlightened me on the dangers of sugar several months ago, my life has been completely different. I have been making considerably better food choices and have seen dramatic weight loss as a result. Making the changes wasn’t easy at first because it seemed like every product on the shelf in supermarkets is loaded with sugar. It’s a real eye opening experience to walk through a supermarket and look at the nutrition labels on products to see how much sugar is in a product. Now that the American Heart Association is shedding some light onto the dangers of sugar, it’s likely going to become a whole different ball game when product manufacturers will have to start highlighting how much sugar is in their products rather than hiding that information in the fine print of the nutritional label.
To the sugar industry, if you think the American Heart Association’s findings are damaging to the image of your products, just wait until Jorge Cruise releases his upcoming documentary, “Death By Sugar” as it’s likely to do to the sugar industry what “Super Size Me” did to the fast food industry. I feel fortunate that Jorge invited me to take part in a little experiment to see the effects of sugar on the blood stream first hand. The information is shocking to say the least. I will never look at sugar the same way again. I want to thank the AHA for making their statement about sugar and I think we’re going to see a revolution in America as people discover the dangers of sugar and start changing their diets to reflect a lower sugar content.
For those new to my blog site, below appears the trailer for Jorge Cruise’s “Death By Sugar” documentary. I’m also including a before and after photograph of my blood from the experiment detailed in the trailer. To learn more about Jorge Cruise’s Belly Fat Cure program visit JorgeCruise.com and download the free report. I am living proof that by cutting sugar intake down to 15 grams a day or less can result in dramatic weight loss. I am forever grateful to Jorge Cruise for teaching me about dangers of sugar so I could change my lifestyle before I ended up with the diseases associated with a sugar loaded lifestyle.