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U.S. heart group recommends limits on added sugar intake
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People are recommended to limit their added sugar consumption by the American Heart Association in a statement as quoted by news agencies Tuesday.

The organization said on Monday most women should take in no more than 100 calories of added sugar per day, or six teaspoons, while for most men the recommendation is just 150 calories or nine teaspoons.

The recommendation is far below the 22 teaspoons or 355 calories of average sugar consumption by the Americans per day, according to data gathered during a national nutrition survey between 2001 and 2004.

Added sugars offer no nutritional value other than calories to the diet, and too much sugar intake not only makes people fat, but also increases their risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke, according to the statement.

The recommendation only applies to the added sugars, which are added to foods during manufacturing or by consumers, including sugar in soft drinks, candy, desserts and sweetened dairy products such as ice cream and yogurt. Sugar that occurs naturally in fruits, vegetables, dairy products and other foods is not included.

The organization particularly aimed at the soft drinks, which the organization said is the No. 1 source of added sugars in the U.S. diet. It said many studies have shown a correlation between higher intake of sweetened beverages and obesity.

For example, one 12-ounce (0.35 liter) can of regular soda contains roughly 130 calories, which already exceeds a woman's daily sugar budget.

The organization also suggested that if people want to eat more sweet treats, they need to increase their sugar budget by becoming more physically active.

(Agencies via Xinhua August 25, 2009)


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