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Sugar Coated

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Did you know that children between the ages of 2 and 18 must consume less than six teaspoons of added sugars each day to maintain a healthy heart, but that a 12-ounce can of Coca-Cola contains nearly ten teaspoons of sugar? Once it all adds up, the average teen consumes 28 teaspoons of added sugar per day. And did you know that the average American eats close to 90 pounds of added sugar in a year? The CDS Food and Agricultural Sciences program focuses on healthy eating, and this week we welcomed Wolfram Alderson from the Institute for Responsible Nutrition, which educates children about fructose, glucose, and the hidden sugars in our diet.

As part of Wolfram's presentation, student volunteers Natalia and Cash wore the sugar coat, a jacket with many pockets into which students put four-pound bags of sugar, soft drinks and candy. The whole thing weighs close to 90 pounds, vividly demonstrating what sugar can do to our bodies. 

Wolfram works with Dr. Robert Lustig, a pediatric endocrinologist at UCSF and founder of Responsible Nutrition who specializes in treating childhood obesity. Years ago, type 2 diabetes (which is directly related to dietary choices) was an adult disease, but now 60,000 children in the United States suffer from it. In addition, 75% of the U.S. food supply contains added sugar.

For more information about the sugar epidemic, see the documentary Sugar Coated, which is available on Vimeo, or the website


Further resources:

Doctor Sweetstuff

  1. Satirical Twitter account

Sweet Revenge Documentary

  1. English version (Code "ASCR" = $1 discount out of $3.99)
  2. Spanish version (Code "ASCRS" = $1 discount)