By: Natosha Bratcher, Communications Intern
On Tuesday April 15, Wilmington residents at the Career Team Job Training and Vocational Rehabilitation Center located on the Riverfront in downtown Wilmington were educated on the affects of added sugar in their foods. Leah Brown RD, our Community Nutritionist, presented a class, “Rethink Your Drink,” that gave attendees a closer look at how the added sugar in their foods and diets, specifically drinks, can affect their overall health.
Leah instructed students on how adding extra, unnecessary sugar into their daily diets through unhealthy drinks like soda, juice and sweetened iced teas can lead to weight gain, diabetes and a multitude of other health problems.
Participants were asked to guess how many teaspoons of sugar were in various drinks and many were surprised at the high numbers. They then took part in a demonstration where they poured the teaspoons of sugar into plastic cups so they could visualize the amount. One student said after learning how much sugar was in 20 ounce bottle of soda, “I am never drinking soda again.”
The participants in the class gained a lot of knowledge and had many important takeaways. They learned that sugar should be limited to 10 teaspoons a day for adults and 8 teaspoons a day for children.
Participants discovered that sugar has other names like sucrose, dextrose, lactose, glycerol, xylitol, corn syrup and fructose corn syrup. So when reading the ingredients list, they should look out for those key terms. And if they see those key terms at the top of the ingredients list that means that sugar is a main ingredients, which is not good.
Participants also learned that foods that are low in fat and low in salt are not always healthier, because more sugar is often added to these foods to make them taste better. So participants should avoid those foods.
The class was an eye opening experience for many participants. Many already knew that soda, juice and sweetened ice teas were not good for them!
SNAP-Ed classes are offered multiple times throughout the month at community centers, churches, day care facilities, schools and other similar venues and targets SNAP recipients or SNAP eligible individuals.
For more information on SNAP-Ed classes or to schedule a session please click here.