too much sugar in soda

I drink a cup of coffee most mornings - sometimes black, sometimes with a little sugar. Yesterday though, I added more sugar than normal - not a lot, and not on purpose, but wow - my coffee tasted so sweet. Too sweet, actually.

Then I read the label on the sugar canister: 1 tsp of sugar has 15 calories. And then I really started thinking...

If this 15-calorie cup of coffee is too sweet, and a can of Coke has 140 calories - what else can be in a Coke that's adding a hundred or so calories?

Let's read the label: carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, caramel color, phosphoric acid, natural flavors, caffeine. Hmmm - water, color, acid, caffeine.. is it possible all the calories are coming from HFCS (sugar)?

That's when I went to the interwebs, and found a whole bunch of people had already done the research - and shown the results in pictures - and the results are scary! Check out the pictures below..

Sugar adds up fast!

Jon wrote a post on the Dad Is Learning blog, where he measured out the actual sugar consumed from drinking three cans of Dr Pepper per day: cubes up a picture by size of Coke:

Maybe you'd prefer to see it in Spanish, from the Alimento y Buen Vivir blog:

Or by spoonful, from the Body and Soul website:

It's all in your point of view

All this is just soda - we didn't even get into fruit juice, breakfast cereals, muffins, yogurt, and just about everything else that's been prepackaged..

The amount of sugar we're asking our bodies to process is astounding. Of course we can always fall back on the old adage "everything is ok in moderation" - an adage that I really like, by the way - but then we have to define moderation. Look back at those two glasses full of sugar from one week's worth of Dr Pepper; I wouldn't put a bag of refined sugar in front of my kids and expect them to finish it by the end of the month. Would you?

Ask me if I want a Coke, and I'll usually answer yes.

Ask me if I want a glass of carbonated water and 15 spoonfuls of sugar, and I'll pass - every time.

Maybe changing our point of view is the way to cut back on the amount of sugar we eat. I know I can't un-see those pictures..!

- Chris Butterworth