Fresh UK guidelines caution on sugar

World Health Organisation say an adult should limit sugar intake from processed sources to six teaspoons equivalent per day

Juices and fizzy drinks were the largest sources of added sugar.

Juices and fizzy drinks were the largest sources of added sugar.

Fri, May 16, 2014, 01:00


The international health campaign against sugar continues with new UK guidelines advising that people should consume no more than a single glass of fruit juice a day.

The recommendations follow those from the World Health Organisation (WHO) who say an adult should limit sugar intake from processed sources to six teaspoons equivalent per day.

Fruit juices and fizzy drinks were targeted in the UK national diet and nutrition survey by Public Health England. It warned that parents and children are consuming unsafe quantities of sugar, in turn feeding into an obesity epidemic and rapid increase in diabetes.

The same risks exist here where the intake is well above WHO recommendations, said Dr Cliona Foley Nolan, director of human health and nutrition at Safe Food, the food safety promotion board.


Added sugar danger
Juices are often seen by parents as a healthy treat but

may contain multiples of the WHO advice, said UK officials. Children and teens in Britain were consuming 40 per cent more added sugar than the daily recommended allowance, the report found. Juices and fizzy drinks were the largest sources of added sugar. Added sugar is sugar added to foods, as opposed to sugars in fruit or unprocessed foods.

Added sugar should be no more than 11 per cent of daily calorific intake but all age categories in Britain exceed this, noted the report. Under-10s got 14.7 per cent of their calories from added sugar, while 11 to 18s reached 15.6 per cent. Adults too were above the recommendation with added sugar making up 12.1 per cent of calorie intake.

Last March the WHO issued draft guidelines that halved its recommended free sugar intake, taking it down from 10 per cent of daily energy intake to just 5 per cent. This equates to just six teaspoons of sugar a day for a normal weight adult.