Too much sugar could triple heart disease, death risk

Well, it's no surprise Americans eat way too much sugar. But according to a new study, that sweet tooth is killing us.

"It found adults who got at least 25 percent of their daily calories from added sugar were almost three times more likely to die of heart problems than those who consumed less than 10 percent." (Via WCBS)

Research published Monday in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine found more than 70 percent of adults in the U.S. consume 15 percent of their daily calories from added sugars in foods and drinks.

That adds up to about 300 calories a day based on a 2,000-calorie diet, which is way more than medical experts recommend for a healthy diet.

WHNS points out the American Heart Association cautions women against consuming more than 100 calories a day from added sugars. And men shouldn't have more than 150 calories worth.

The Los Angeles Times reports the research defines added sugars as all sugars used in processed or prepared foods, such as sugar-sweetened beverages, grain-based desserts, fruit drinks, dairy desserts, candy, ready-to-eat cereals, and yeast breads, but not naturally occurring sugar, such as in fruits and fruit juices.

And researchers have determined all this sugar significantly increases the risk of death from heart disease.

A professor of health policy at the UC San Francisco School of Medicine wrote in a commentary about the study, "Too much sugar does not just make us fat; it can also make us sick."

The study used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a study updated every year by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that looks at the health and nutritional status of people in the U.S.

According to USA Today, researchers looked at information from more than 31,000 people who participated in the survey  over the years to get the results.

Although health experts say these findings are an important contribution to the growing body of research on sugar and chronic disease, they also say the study doesn't prove a cause-and-effect relationship between added sugar and heart disease.

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