Via The Prince George Citizen, Helen Branswell of The Canadian Press writes: WHO urging people to limit sugar calories to below 10% or below 5% if possible. Excerpt:
The World Health Organization is again urging people to lower the amount of sugar they eat.
The Geneva-based global health agency says people should restrict their intake of sugar to no more than 10 per cent of their daily calorie intake, but getting it down below five per cent would be better.
The draft recommendations, which will likely be contentious, will be open for public comment for the rest of March.
Then the agency and scientific advisers will finalize the guidance.
The WHO has long urged people to limit sugar calories to below 10 per cent of their daily calories, but the five per cent target is new.
To put it into context, five per cent would be about six teaspoons of sugar a day; a can of sugar-sweetened soda contains about 10 teaspoons of sugar.
The recommendations relate to what are called free sugars — those added by manufacturers, cooks or consumers. And they abound in prepared foods. The WHO report notes that one tablespoon of ketchup contains about four grams or one teaspoon of sugar.
They relate to all monosaccharides — things like glucose and fructose — and disaccharides such as sucrose or table sugar, as well as sugars in honey, syrups, fruit juices and fruit concentrates.
The recommendations do not relate to "intrinsic" sugars — those built into whole foods such as fruits or vegetables.
The recommendations look at limiting sugar intake in relation to lowering the risk of obesity and dental decay, two conditions scientific studies suggest are linked to excess sugar consumption.
The report, from the WHO Department of Nutrition for Health and Development, says consideration was given to also looking at the evidence related to sugar intake and two other conditions — heart disease and diabetes. But in the end the focus remained on obesity and tooth decay.