Thanks to news reports last week, we now know that a single can of fizzy drink contains seven to nine teaspoonfuls of sugar.
We shouldn’t be surprised given we’re warned off such drinks from our first visit to the dentist, but facing the hard reality of what we’re putting in our bodies, and the damage it can do, is still hard to swallow.
Just to recap on the not-so-sugar-coated facts, obesity is reaching epidemic proportions in the UK, with a quarter of all adults and a fifth of children classified as such, and one third of UK adults also have pre-diabetes, or borderline diabetes.
The Government's Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition is now recommending that around 5% of people’s daily energy can come from free sugars - those added to food or contained in fruit juices, honey, syrups and sweetened drinks.
That would amount to 25 grams of sugar for women and 35 grams, or seven to eight teaspoonfuls, for men.
The recommended amount was previously 10%, so it’s quite a significant change in policy.
But it’s not simply a case of cutting out the usual suspects such as soft drinks, chocolate and cakes from your diet - there’s a whole heap of hidden sugar lurking in food these days.
“We are a country hooked on sugar, which has been added to our food to improve taste,” says Zoe Frith, in-house nutritionist for Prestige Purchasing.
“Most people are wise to the products that contain high sugar levels, however, may not be aware just how much they are consuming
“The biggest surprise for consumers is the hidden sugars in savoury products which can be unexpectedly high, such as canned goods, ready meals and sauces.
“We have got used to these sweetness levels in our food and as such are in a vicious circle – a sweet-tooth nation which would notice the difference if sugar levels were lowered.”