The World Health Organisation (WHO) recently issued new guidelines recommending we reduce the amount of added sugar in our diet.

The recommendations include:

  • reducing the intake of free sugars throughout the life-course
  • reducing the intake of free sugars to less than 10% of total energy intake for both adults and children

WHO also suggests a further reduction of the intake of free sugars to below 5% of total energy intake as a conditional recommendation.

What does this actually mean? Generally, the recommendations for added sugars are:

 

Children <4 years of age

  • 16 grams sugar (4 teaspoons)

Children 4-8 years of age

  • 12 grams sugar (3 teaspoons)

Pre-teens and teenagers

  • 20-32 grams sugar (5-8 teaspoons)

Adults

  • 55-70 grams sugar (14-18 teaspoons)

A 375ml can of soft drink contains more than the daily allowance of added sugar for children and teenagers.

A 600ml bottle of soft drink contains more than the daily allowance of added sugar for most adults.