Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Sugars and Nutrition Labels

I will confess that as a child, I did not know or understand anything about a nutrition label.  My dad tried teaching me when I was a preteen, but I shrugged him off, as any hormonal preteen does to their parents.  To be honest, I wish I hadn't.  However, I remember when I finally started reading nutrition labels before I bought items in the grocery store, I actually taught my parents something - buy "no salt added" if you are going to buy canned vegetables.  I wonder, though, how many people actually read and pay attention to labels, and how effective the new nutrition facts labels will be in 2018.  I think there is a typo on the new label, can you find it?

So what's different with the new label?  Not too much.  Some bigger font at the top, adding micrograms/milligrams, and having a line for added sugars.  That's the one that upsets me; there is still no guideline for TOTAL sugar intake.  The U.S. is still going by the 10% of your total caloric intake for the amount of added sugar you may have in your diet.  The guidelines for added sugar are all over the place, as Erickson and Slavin highlight in Table 1.  In 2015, the World Health Organization changed their added sugars guidelines to 5%.  What's right?  And why is there still no guideline around TOTAL sugar rather than just ADDED sugar?  Most arguments seem to be based on the argument that people are not eating enough fruits and vegetables, so having a TOTAL sugar guideline would even reduce the consumption even more.  However, when I was super diligent on counting my TOTAL sugar intake, the primary food sources were my two fruits per day, and I did not consume fruits that were high in sugar.

I only found two sources in which any country ever referenced a guideline for TOTAL sugar.  There could be others, so please feel free to leave a comment.  The United Kingdom's National Health Service states 90 grams of sugar per day in which 30 grams could be "free" sugars (aka, ADDED sugars).  The other article that I found was from a fellow blogger who wrote that Germany has a 90 grams per day recommendation as well.

Since removing sugar, in general, from my diet worked well last time, I plan on doing that again.  I do, though, travel for work, so I will be supplementing to help reduce the amount of sugar that is absorbed during those trips by using Plexus Block.  The Brown Seaweed blend targets two enzymes responsible for the digestive breakdown of carbs and sugars.  These two enzymes, alpha-amylase and alpha-glucosidase, are then inhibited in their ability to convert carbs and sugars into glucose (which then turns to fat if not used).  Plexus Block can block absorption of 48% of the carbs and sugars you consume.  Please also see this article.  I also think Sandi Busch provides a good overview of kidney bean extract, another key ingredient in Plexus Block, and how it blocks alpha-amylase.

I will keep you up-to-date on my journey back to health, I plan to fully use the tools that Plexus has given me.

**Please note, always talk with your primary care provider about the supplements you take.  The FDA does not evaluate these products.  These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.**

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