If you’re still drinking full-fat Coca-Cola, a new study may be the final straw to switch you to the diet option.
Swiss scientists have warned that consuming foods and beverages with only moderate amounts of added sugar doubles fat production in the liver.
They found that drinking 80 grams of sugar – roughly two cans of Coca-Cola – every day caused the surge.
Coca-Cola contains fructose and sucrose, which promote liver lipogenesis – the synthesis of fatty acids in the liver – even in small amounts, according to the experts.
It is worrying that fat production in the liver continues even after you stop consuming sugar and that the risk of fatty liver disease and type 2 diabetes can increase.
Even moderate amounts of added fructose and sucrose double the body’s own fat production in the liver, researchers at the University of Zurich have shown
HOW MUCH SUGAR IS TOO MUCH?
The amount of sugar a person should be eating in a day depends on how old they are.
Children between the ages of four and six should be limited to a maximum of 19 g per day.
Seven to ten year olds shouldn’t weigh more than 24 g and children 11 years and over should weigh 30 g or less.
In the meantime, the NHS recommends that adults eat no more than 30 grams of free sugar per day.
Popular snacks are surprisingly high in sugar, and even a single can of Coca Cola (35 g sugar) or a Mars bar (33 g) contains more than the maximum amount of sugar a child should have over a day.
A bowl of Frosties contains 24g of sugar, which means that a 10-year-old who has Frosties for breakfast will likely have reached their limit for the day before they even leave the house.
Children who eat too much sugar risk damaging their teeth, gaining fat, becoming overweight, and developing type 2 diabetes, which increases the risk of heart disease and cancer.
“80 grams of sugar a day, which corresponds to about 0.8 liters of a normal soft drink, increases fat production in the liver,” said study author Philipp Gerber from the Department of Endocrinology, Diabetology and Clinical Nutrition at UZH.
“And the overactive fat production lasts longer, even if no more sugar is consumed.
Fructose, or fructose, is found in many sweetened beverages and is added in the form of high-fructose corn syrup, especially in the United States.
Fructose begins its journey around the body in the intestines and is delivered directly to the liver, where it is converted into fat.
It is found naturally in many plants and honey, but has become more common in the modern diet thanks to refined sugars and corn syrup.
The foods and beverages that are high in fructose today include apples, grapes, fruit juices, sugary beverages such as cola, candy, and fruit yogurt.
Coca Cola contains high fructose corn syrup, but diet sodas like Diet Coke and Sprite Zero do not and are instead sweetened with artificial substitutes.
The researchers wanted to know whether consuming too much sugar with regular consumption has other harmful effects – and if so, which sugar in particular.
It has also been debated whether fructose causes diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
The researchers recruited 94 healthy young men between the ages of 18 and 30 for the study.
Participants were divided into four groups, each of whom drank a different type of drink each day for seven weeks.
They either consumed a drink sweetened with fructose, glucose or sucrose (table sugar, a combination of fructose and glucose), while men in the fourth control group refrained from drinking sugary drinks.
Participants drank 2 deciliters (dl) of their drink (200 ml) with 13.3 g / dl sugar three times a day for seven weeks.
Therefore, 26.6 g of sugar were administered three times a day, which corresponds to a total of almost 80 g.
80 g corresponds to about 700 ml Coca Cola, a little more than two cans of Cola.
The researchers then used tracers – labeled substances that can be tracked as they move through the body – to analyze the effects of the sugary drinks on lipid metabolism.
Interestingly, the participants did not consume more calories overall than before the study, as the sugary drink increased the feeling of satiety and therefore they reduced their caloric intake from other sources.
The graphic summary shows the examination method. The participants received fructose, sucrose, glucose or avoided drinks containing sugar
However, the results showed that even moderate amounts lead to a change in the metabolism of the test participants.
“The body’s own fat production in the liver was twice as high in the fructose group as in the glucose group or the control group – and this was the case for more than twelve hours after the last meal or the last sugar consumption,” said Gerber.
Sucrose, or table sugar, is made commercially from sugar cane and sugar beets and is the sugar we most commonly consume.
Surprisingly, sucrose increased fat synthesis slightly more than the same amount of fructose, the researchers found.
Previously, it was thought that fructose was most likely to cause such changes.
“Our results are a critical step in researching the harmful effects of added sugars and will be of great importance for future dietary recommendations,” said Gerber.
The World Health Organization recommends limiting daily sugar consumption to around 50 grams, or even better, 25 grams.
In the meantime, the NHS recommends that adults consume no more than 30 grams of free sugar – sugar added to a food or drink – per day.
Popular treats hide a surprising amount of sugar – a can of Coca Cola (35g sugar) or a Mars bar (33g) contains more than the recommended maximum.
The study was published in the Journal of Hepatology.
How To Remove Fructose Sugar From Your Diet
Stop buying processed foods
Easy? Not exactly. But most foods that are packaged, packaged, or canned have added sugar. One helpful tip is to shop on the outside edges of your grocery store. There tend to be more fresh products with no added sugar.
Make your own sauces and dressings
It’s time consuming, but it’s worth it. The sauces and dressings you make at home can help remove a large amount of the added sugar that is in the pre-made ones.
Avoid flavored yogurt
Some of your favorite yogurts contain more sugar than a candy bar. This doesn’t help when you are trying to lose weight. Instead, buy plain yogurt and add honey or fresh fruit for more natural sweetness
Buy only fresh fruit
It’s best to avoid juices, and dried fruits are delicious but full of sugar. Make yourself at home by buying fresh fruit instead.
Cut out fizzy drinks
It should come as no surprise that these drinks are bad for you. If you don’t feel like you can do without your soda fix, try limiting yourself to a certain amount per week.
Eat dark chocolate for dessert
Do you have a sweet tooth? Still, treat yourself to something sweet by eating dark chocolate instead. It’s better for you and has great health benefits like lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of a heart attack.
Avoid mixed drinks
There is a lot of sugar in drinks like cola and rum or even gin and tonic. Avoid these sugars by ordering wine, blended spirits, or soda water.