A growing body of research is suggesting that our modern day sugar-saturated diet is one of the most lethal health concerns in America.

And the biggest part of the problem is that most of us have no idea how much sugar is in the food and drinks we consume. Why? Because food manufacturers have perfected the craft of deception. There are nearly 50 sneaky names for natural and artificial sugar — and those are just the ones we know about!

While consuming natural sugars in moderation, like those found in fruit, honey or natural maple syrup, is perfectly healthy, the American Heart Association recommends only consuming 6-9 teaspoons of sugar per day. This can be hard, as most processed foods & drinks contain gargantuan amounts of sugar.

Did you know that when you drink a 20 ounce soda, you are consuming 130% of the suggested daily sugar limit?

Plus, sugar is no longer just found in candy and soda. Hundreds of products, including bread, crackers, the vast majority of snack foods, yogurts, juice and even salad dressing is loaded with artificial sugar.

What can you do? Educate yourself using the information below and really start reading labels!

The tricky part is that added sugar is listed under a variety of different names that could easily be overlooked. Plus, even if you do a quick check to make sure sugar is not among the top three ingredients, many companies use up to four or five different types of added sugar in a single product, so these sneaky names will all end up lower on the ingredients list.

Picture courtesy of Appetite for Health

As much as you can, avoid food and drink products that list three or more of these sneaky names for sugar. Remember, most of these sugar additives are not naturally derived. They are pumping harmful toxins into your body.

When you’re cooking or baking, try using unrefined natural sweeteners like honey, maple syrup or stevia instead of refined white sugar. Avoid fast food and soda as much as possible, as these are the biggest culprits for artificial sugars.

And if you have a sweet tooth, eat some fresh fruit!

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