New guidelines from The American Heart Association are out now with its first ever statement on the issue of kids overconsuming sugar. They say children should limit their sugar intake to 25 grams a day. That’s just six teaspoons per day. The issue of concern is not with the natural sugar kids consume by eating fruits, bread, and many other natural sugar sourced items. The concern is the amount of added sugar that is added throughout the day. For instance, American kids and teens on average consume up to 90.5 grams of added sugars daily. That’s triple the amount recommended. Many kids are unaware of the extra sugar they are consuming through sodas, sports drinks, sweets, pizza, burgers, corn dogs, and cheeseburgers. A diet high in added sugar for children increases the chance that they’ll develop childhood obesity and or have high cholesterol that will result in other health issues in the future.
“We all consume extra added sugar without realizing it, parents need to help monitor their kids added sugar intake by limiting how many condiments such as ketchup their kids use, soda intake, not keeping sweets on hand in the home,” says Cassie McGrath a graduate student studying nutrition at California State University, Sacramento. “It’s all about creating healthier choices such as fruit smoothies, milk, and dark chocolate as healthy alternatives.
The city of Sacramento Unified School District has already taken precautions to help limit kids intake consuming unhealthy sugar and carbohydrates. They created nutritional menu plans that portions out how much sugar, and carbohydrates they can consume throughout the week. The goal is to teach kids how to consume added sugar in moderation, which could help the community health in the future.