Food

Do Some Drinks Contain An Unhealthy Amount of Sugar?

You have asked this question to a lot of people. You keep wondering if the sugars/sweeteners present in these beverages are a hazard to your health. Most of the time, your quest for this information ends up with more questions. Today, we are going to simplify things for you. We will look into different drinks by different brands and see how they stack up. Do they contain too much sugar?

How much sugar per day should you consume?

Let us first look at how much sugar the average person consumes. In Delhi, the average person consumes 23.2 grams of sugar per day according to an NMMB Urban study 2015-16. However, the ICMR( Indian Council of Medical Research) recommends a sugar intake of 30g/day. The maximum sugar intake during the day should not exceed 36 grams. India is not among the top 10 most sugar consuming countries. Although, sugar consumption is on the rise in the country. One of the accused of this rise is soft drinks. Let us have a look at these accusations by reviewing the sugar content in various drinks.

Soft drinks( Coca Cola/ Sprite/ Pepsi)

Drink sugar

A 600 mL serving of Coca Cola contains a whopping 64 grams of sugar. However, most people do not drink such a large amount in one go. A 100 mL serving has around 10.6 grams of sugar. Suppose you drink a glass of 250 mL in a day, then that is 26.5 grams of sugar. That means you can consume a maximum of 10 grams of sugar apart from the soft drink. It is practically impossible to have that kind of control to have an intake of a meagre 10 grams of sugar. Even if you limit your sugar consumption, it will still cross 20 grams and that means your total intake will cross 45 grams which can prove to be detrimental. So, it is recommended that one should limit their consumption of soft drinks as much as they can. Reducing the frequency of drinking is also a solution.

Energy drinks( Red Bull/ Rockstar/ Monster Energy Drink)

Energy drinks are a different category altogether because these drinks are consumed in large amounts in cans. Each serving of 100 mL contains around 13 grams of sugar. A typical energy drink can have 300 mL of beverage which in turn contains close to 39 grams of sugar. That is a lot! If you drink one can in a day, then you have already exceeded your daily quota of sugar. Adding the daily intake only worsens the equation. So, energy drinks are much worse off than soft drinks. There are many students and late-night workers who drink more than one can to stay up the night. The problem is much larger for such individuals who regularly consume these drinks high in sugar.

Other drinks( Lipton Ice Tea/ Mother Dairy Butter milk)

There are other drinks too which are available in the market and need a mention. The reason being their low sugar content. The two drinks mentioned above only have around 5 grams of sugar in 100 mL serving. That means an average of 250 mL serving will only have 12.5 grams of sugar. You can accommodate such a small amount anywhere in your daily intake. 

Apart from drinking these packaged beverages, the best option is to prepare your own drink at home. You can control the amount of sugar you want. Try keeping it below 8 grams for a 100 mL serving. Sugar is also called white poison. It has a lot of calories with no nutrient value. Some drinks which you can prepare are buttermilk, lassi, iced tea, cold coffee, masala chai, shikanje and many others. 

Written By,

Abdullah Shamsi

Student, NIFTEM

Wanna read more about ingredients added in our food? You can check out our post on the dangers of High Fructose Corn Syrup.

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Comments
  1. Very useful information! Had a little knowledge of these, earlier as well, but the article is quite satisfying!

    1. Thanks for enlightening us. I will try to implement these in my day to day life.

  2. Nice ! Thanks for sharing .

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