Sugar consumption alone does not appear to cause hyperactivity in children, although it obviously is not good for kids’ teeth and has been tied to the risk of diabetes. In fact, 17% of calories in the American diet come from added sugars. The gratuitous inclusion of sugar in the USDA Dietary Guidelines may be due to corporate influence (see here, here, here, here, here). Sugar and high fructose corn syrup are about equal in terms of nutritional value (which is about zero). However, high fructose corn syrup may contain mercury so sugar may be a relatively safer option. There actually are two sweeteners that have some nutrition (see also here).

The sugar in dark chocolate means cocoa powder is a better choice to reduce bad cholesterol and boost good cholesterol. Similarly, commercial cranberry juice and Cheerios have added sugar which detracts from their value as health-promoting foods. The addition of cinnamon to meats may actually blunt the blood sugar spike caused by sugary foods.

Topic summary contributed by Denise.
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