- Glass of apple juice contains as much sugar as three Krispy Kreme donuts
- A fat-free yogurt contains as much as three scoops of ice cream
- World Health Organisation recommends no more than five teaspoons a day
- Survey reveals 90% of mothers are unaware of these high levels of sugar
- A fifth confess their child doesn’t eat a balanced diet
Most of us have no idea a glass of seemingly healthy apple juice contains almost as much sugar as three Krispy Kreme donuts or a bar of Dairy Milk, a survey has found.
With almost seven teaspoons of sugar in a single serving, apple juice contains more than the recommended daily amount for adults who want to stay healthy.
According to the World Health Organisation, this should be six teaspoons of ‘added’ sugar – i.e. not that found naturally in products such as milk.
Similarly, a fat-free yogurt – a food also often marketed as a natural, healthy choice – contains five teaspoons of sugar – the same as in three scoops of ice cream.
The high levels of sugar found in everyday – often so-called ‘healthy items’ – were revealed as part of a survey by Bupa.
This asked 2,000 mothers if they were aware of the amount of sugar found in foods they may be giving their children.
In the poll, more than 90 per cent admitted they had no idea about the high levels of sugar in apple juice and fat-free yogurt.
Bupa states the average glass of concentrated apple juice contains nearly seven teaspoons on sugar.
One Krispy Kreme Original glazed donut, on the other hand, contains 10g of sugar – which equates to two teaspoons.
Nearly half of mothers (46 per cent) admitted they were worried their child might be addicted to sugar.
But despite their concerns, a fifth confessed their child does not eat a balanced diet.
And 60 per cent admitted they do not regularly look at the nutritional information on food.
Too much sugar in a child’s diet can cause permanent damage to their health, including increased risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. It can also cause tooth decay.
Despite this, 40 per cent of mothers said their children have sweets, fizzy drinks or chocolate at least once a day.
Doctors say keeping to a maximum of six teaspoons of sugar a day is key to avoiding obesity, heart disease and other serious illnesses because they fear sugar is as dangerous as tobacco.
Chief medical officer Sally Davies has already said a tax may be put on calorie-laden food and drink to curb soaring levels of obesity.
Until recently, it was thought that ‘bad drinks’ were those such as Coke and Pepsi, and fruit juice was a healthy alternative helping us get our ‘five a day’.
But increasingly experts are warning that fruit juices and are fuelling the obesity epidemic.
Low-fat foods have also come under fire from experts, after it was revealed they often contain more sugar than the full-fat alternative.
Earlier this year a study found manufacturers are making their ‘healthy’ options more palatable by replacing fat with sugar.
While most low-fat supermarket products contain a third fewer calories than their regular fat version, 10 per cent actually have more or the same calories, mainly due to added sugars.
Obesity specialist Dr Matthew Capehorn said weight-conscious shoppers should realise that choosing low-fat products made by brands including Weight Watchers could hamper their efforts to cut calories.
Nearly a quarter of mothers said they like putting sugary treats in their child’s lunchbox, with the top culprits being cakes, chocolate and fruit juice.
On top of this, nearly a third of mothers think that as they give their children healthy food, sugar isn’t an issue.
The news comes as NICE announce that schools and nurseries should run tooth brushing schemes to improve children’s teeth.
As many as one in eight children now suffer tooth decay by the age of three – although in some parts of England the rates are as high as a third.