Many popular drinks have added sugars or sweeteners. Drinks that seem healthy, like fruit juice or sports drinks, can still have a lot of added sugar. Extra sugar just adds calories and doesn’t have any nutrients or vitamins. Here are some common drinks and their amounts of added sugar.
- Juice drink (not 100% juice) 23 teaspoons (97 grams), 305 calories
- Soda 22 teaspoons (92 grams), 242 calories
- Energy 17 teaspoons (71 grams), 230 calories
- Sports 12 teaspoons (50 grams), 125 calories
- Chocolate milk 9 teaspoons (38 grams), 160 calories
Drinking one sugary drink a day can mean you’re getting double or triple the amount of added sugar that’s healthy for your body. Just one sugary drink a day can cause health problems like weight gain, obesity, tooth decay, heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Take a look at the label on your drink. How much sugar are you drinking? A teaspoon has 4 grams of sugar.
The American Heart Association recommends these daily maximums for added sugar intake:
- 6 teaspoons (24 grams)
- 3-6 teaspoons (12-24 grams)
- About 9 teaspoons (36 grams)
Sugar hides under all of these names:
- Barley malt
- Brown sugar
- Cane sugar
- Corn syrup or corn sweetener
- Evaporated cane juice
- Fruit juice concentrate
- High fructose corn syrup
- Maple syrup
- Raw sugar
Make healthier choices if sugar or one of these sweeteners is listed in the first three ingredients in your drink.