Integrative Health Blog

Sugar, Carbs and the New Dietary Guidelines

Posted by NIHA Staff on Mon, Feb 23, 2015

223eve_sugarcube-1Every 5 years the U.S. government revises our national dietary guidelines. This past week the nutrition advisory panel that helps to formulate those guidelines came out with new recommendations.

Among them was their new sugar consumption guideline. They now advocate consuming no more than 12 added teaspoons of sugar/day, or roughly 10% of the diet due to the link between sugar, obesity and chronic disease like heart disease. While this recommendation is certainly a step in the right direction, the American Heart Association has a tighter restriction, and advises no more than 6 teaspoons of sugar/day for women and no more than 9 added teaspoons of sugar/day for men.

Read the full article here:

How Much Sugar Are You Consuming? 

Processed foods generally contain high levels of sugar and it’s estimated that Americans, due to high consumption of processed foods, consume in excess of 22 teaspoons of sugar per day!

Real food is always the winner over processed food when it comes to nutrient value and density. 

Among all the “real” food choices though, there are things to consider when planning your next breakfast, lunch or dinner fare such as:

-   Which foods will give me the most energy?

-   Will I be hungry in an hour if I choose to eat this now?

-   Is this really enough food for lunch? (always the culprit when dieting!)

-   Do I see carbohydrates, protein AND good fats on my plate?


I have written in previous articles about pre-diabetes, weight loss and Type II diabetes - all conditions that can be made better or worse depending on the types of foods that we choose to eat. Carbohydrates and sugars are of primary concern for diabetics or those with prediabetes or high blood sugar numbers.Excess carbohydrates and sugars contribute to weight gain, yes, but they also contribute to silent inflammation in the body which can pave the way for other chronic diseases to develop like arthritis and heart disease. 

My passion includes educating people on the benefits of a low carb lifestyle for weight loss, improved blood sugar control,  and disease prevention. As a nurse and a health coach I know that the connection between the foods we eat and the health we enjoy is very real.


Topics: carbohydrates, sugar