See where they are hiding…..

Too much sugar: Obesity!

Too much salt: Speeds up aging process!

Dietary habits in childhood and adolescence are likely to influence eating patterns in later life.

Children are eating too much salt and sugar.

The sweet stuff is absolutely everywhere. For example, there is 13 grams of sugar for every 2 tablespoon of BBQ sauce. Equivalent to 3 sugar packets (5 g).       An 8 oz of soda is loaded with 30-35 g of sugar. Almost 6 -7 packets of sugar! Do you take 6 packets of sugar, for a cup of coffee?  You may opt for zero percent sugar in your yogurt. But what if it comes with 3 teaspoons of sugar?  Better be careful of these sneaky sugar bombs.

Convenience foods like soft drinks, cookies, lollies, cakes are high in sugar contents. So, arm yourself with the knowledge of where these sugars are hiding.

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Too much sugar will lead to obesity!

Common Foods Sugar in grams Sugar Packets 5 g
BBQ sauce 13 g Approx 3 packets
Fruit yogurt 19 g Approx 5 packets
Soda 8 oz 29 g Approx 7 packets
10 Gummy worms 44g Approx11 packets
Granola bars 12 g Approx 3 packets
Energy drinks 83 g Approx16 packets

World Health Organisation recommends 5% of your daily calorie from added sugar. That is 25 g of sugar for an average 2000 calorie meal plan. 

American Heart Association recommends for:

An adult women 5 teaspoons (20 g sugar)

An adult Men 9  teaspoons (36 g sugar)

Children 3 teaspoons (12 g sugar)

It is best to save sweets and desserts for special occasions. To satisfy a sugar craving, choose fresh fruits or fruit salad.

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Eating too much salt speeds up the aging process!

Crisps & chips, pizza, pickle, sauces, sausages, smoked fish, salted nuts, some breakfast cereals are the major culprits of high sodium.

I am sure, you are already aware of sodium that raise the blood pressure, which leads to heart attacks and strokes. But a scientist, recently, have linked high sodium to cellular ageing!  Yes, Scientist Dr Haidong Zhu, Georgia Regents University, said that even in young people the high sodium intake and obesity may act synergistically to accelerate cellular ageing!

Teenagers, often opt for convenience foods, high in sodium. People who eat high – sodium food tend to be heavier than those who eat less salt.

Children, preferring salty foods is a learned taste from parents. Children will not prefer salt in first place, if adults could control their sodium intake. Lowering the salt intake will reduce the risk of developing heart and renal disease.

1 teaspoon of salt (6 g) = 2,300 mg of sodium

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For an average healthy adult, American Heart Association recommends;      1,500 mg of sodium or less than 3/4th teaspoon of salt per day.

According to Food Standard Agency UK, for children, daily average maximum salt intake is:

Age 11-14 yrs, need 2300 mg sodium ( 6 g salt) per day

Age 7-10 yrs, need 2000 mg sodium (5 g salt) per day

Age 4-6 yrs, need 1200mg sodium (3g salt) per day

Age 1-3 yrs, need 800mg sodium (2 g salt) per day

Infants under 1 year should not be given salt because their kidneys are not matured

Common foods Sodium
Ketchup 1tbsp 190 mg
Cheese Krafts singles – 1 slice 200mg
Caesar dressing 2 tbsp 380mg
Ramen noodle soup 790mg
French fries 1 regular serving 200 mg
MSG 1 tsp 615 mg

It is obvious that prepacked foods are camouflaged by salt and sugar

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Read food labels, before purchasing the food and add less salt & sugar, while cooking.

Choose fresh / natural ingredients over processed foods.

Turn watching television into a cardio workout. Yes… you can always enjoy your stationary bicycle while watching TV!

References