Truth on sugar
Amidst all the recent coverage on sugar in the media, I’ve been trying to work out what are the key numbers.
The most important single figure appears to be a recommendation by the World Health Organisation that consumers should ensure added sugars account for no more than 10% of the calories in their diet.
In the United States, the average was 15.7% from 1988 to 1994, rising to 16.8% from 1999 to 2004 and dropping to 14.9% between 2005 and 2010. That requires a further 33% reduction to meet the WHO target.
In the United Kingdom, the average has fallen some 12% in ten years to 12.3%. That means a further 19% reduction is required.
Of course: these are averages; added sugars are not the same as total sugars; calories are only one element of healthy diets; and healthier lifestyles would make a difference too. But the figures are all from public authorities and they deserve our attention.