We know that eating too much sugar can be bad for you, but according to US research, you are three times more likely to die of heart disease if added sugar makes up a quarter or more of your daily calorie intake.1
The joint research study, which was carried out by several US Universities including Harvard and Atlanta, examined the higher risk that added sugar provided towards the development of cardiovascular disease.
By looking at the sugar intake of more than 31,000 adults in the US, the researchers were able to link this information to deaths and diseases many years later. While they could not follow the whole group, they did have information on the death and/or disease relating to 11,733 of the original group.
Following up on the group lasted for an average of just over 14 years, and the study found 831 people had died through cardiovascular disease. The results suggested that those who took 25% or more of their daily calories through added sugar were 2.75 times more likely to die from cardiovascular disease than somebody who took 10% of their calories the same way.
This medical study clearly confirms our current understanding that sugar is a contributing factor to cardiovascular disease. A low-fat, high-fibre diet that includes plenty of fruit and vegetables is most beneficial for us, while sugary foods should make up no more than 10% of our daily calorie intake.
1. Yang Q, Zhang Z, Gregg EW, et al. Added Sugar Intake and Cardiovascular Diseases Mortality Among US Adults. JAMA Internal Medicine. Published online February 3 2014