There has been a common consensus over the side effects of higher sugar intake. Now, a study has confirmed that a higher intake of free sugar is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. According to a study, published in the journal BMC Medicine, an increased diet of free sugar is not good for health. Free sugar includes both added and those found naturally in honey or fruit juice.
Study supports global dietary recommendation
Globally, it is recommended to limit free sugar consumption to not more than 5 per cent of total daily energy consumption. The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Oxford. They analysed data from over 1.10 lakh individuals from the Biobank of the United Kingdom. All these individuals had completed at least two dietary assessments.
As part of the research, data of individuals were tracked for over 9 years. During this time, the total number cardiovascular diseases – this included both heart disease and stroke -, heart disease and stroke occurred in 4188m 3138 and 1124 participants respectively.
Carbohydrate intakes not harmful
The study also found the intake of carbohydrates was not harmful. However, they were not beneficial to cardiovascular health as well.
Several recent studies have indicated the quality of carbohydrates is more important when it comes to determining cardiovascular disease than quantity.
Reduce free sugar intake
Researchers found that higher free sugar intake was directly linked to the risk of heart disease. The free sugar included the ones from foods such as sugary drinks, fruit juice and sweets.
According to the researchers, the risk of total cardiovascular disease increased by seven per cent for each five per cent higher total energy from free sugars.
The team found that the risk of heart disease was six per cent higher and that of stroke was 10 per cent higher.