Sugar and heart health

Do you know where sugar lurks?

The risk of dying from heart disease begins to rise when calories from sugar make up more than 15 percent of the total calories.

The link between sugar and heart health is clear: The risk of dying from heart disease begins to rise when calories from sugar make up more than 15 percent of the total calories.

Sugar has recently been making headline news, thanks to a number of studies focusing on sugar and heart health.

Sugar has been linked to insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. A recent study reviewing data from 10,000 United States adults (April 2014, JAMA Internal Medicine) found that, compared to people whose sugar intake was less than 10 percent of their calories, those who reported between 10 and 25 percent of their calories coming from sugar had a significantly higher risk of dying from heart disease, and those who had 25 percent or more of their calories from sugar were almost 3 times as likely to die from heart disease.

The risk of death from heart disease actually began to rise when calories from sugar made up more than 15 percent of the total intake. For a person eating 2,000 calories, this would be the equivalent of just one 20-ounce Mountain Dew a day. Clearly there is a link between sugar and heart health, but even the experts disagree on how much sugar is recommended. Continue reading