One hundred and fifty-six pounds.

That’s how much added sugar Americans consume each year on a per capita basis, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

But how do we get all that sugar in our food even when we think we are making good choices?? I hear that daily when talking with my clients, “ I really do make good choices, but don’t understand how I just can’t drop the weight and feel energized!”

Sugars are great at playing hide and seek. It loves to hide in unsuspecting area like some types of crackers, yogurt, ketchup, salad dressing, bread ketchup, and even baby foods. Sugar even goes undercover by using a different name- high fructose corn syrup of HFCS. The use of HFCS has increased by 3.5% per year in the last decade, according to the World health Organization (WHO), which is twice the rate of refined and brown sugar.

Where is the s156# of sugar coming from?! The U.S. diet is the major source of “added sugar.” This added sugar is not including the sugar form natural sources like fructose from fruit, but this added sugar is from the hidden sugar we maybe missing in our food choices.

So what’s the big problem with a few added sugar molecules anyways?! After all sugar can be part of a healthy and balanced diet. The problem is the added calories the sugar sneaks in under the radar. Those extra calories can add up and lead us straight to bigger health concerns like diabetes and obesity.

Next time you are at the store, or even next time you open your pantry check out the sugar in your products. 10- 13gm is the cut off limit per serving. Just for fun pick up your yogurt and/or salad dressing to see if it fits this limit.


By Adrien Paczosa

Adrien Paczosa is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian practicing in Austin, Texas and the surrounding counties. Adrien is also a Certified Eating Disorders Registered Dietitian(CEDRD). Adrien began her path towards nutrition through her falling down. She has been a dancing since age 2 and in college was a Kilgore College Rangerette. During a practice, she took a fall and broke her foot, and that sparked the ideas of needing a new direction in her life. After graduating in 2003 from the University of Illinois - Chicago with a bachelor of science degree in Human Nutrition, Adrien began her career as a staff dietitian at the hospital in downtown Chicago. She was promoted to the hospital’s Director of Food Service and Nutrition and was responsible for all food preparation as well as patient nutritional care. While working at her clinical job, Adrien maintained her passion for movement by working as a personal trainer and nutrition coach in downtown Chicago. In 2006, Adrien returned to Texas to be close to family, friends, and warmer weather! She opened her private practice, I Live Well Nutritional Therapy in 2007 and has only continued to grown. To date, iLiveWell Nutrition Therapy has multiple locations, contracts with numerous corporations and treatment centers, and currently, five dietitians are employed under iLiveWell. “Creating better access to dietitians!” has been one of the driving forces of Adrien’s company.

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