The World Health Organization (WHO) says it would be “ideal” to restrict so-called free sugars to five per cent of calories per day or less — about 25g (fewer than six teaspoons) for a healthy adult. These are sugars that manufacturers, cooks and consumers add to food, as well as honey, syrup, fruit juices and fruit concentrates. The WHO definition excludes sugars that occur naturally in whole fruits, vegetables and dairy products.
This presents a problem for consumers considering the fact that nutrition facts labels tally the amount of carbohydrates in a serving and even mark the grams of sugar, but they don’t differentiate between how many grams are naturally occurring (as fructose, lactose or other forms) and how much has been added by the manufacturer. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is considering revising labels to reflect this. Still, it’s useful to know how much sugar you’re consuming. Can you tell?