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WHO new recommendation: Daily sugar intake should account for 5% of total calories

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According to new World Health Organization (WHO) guidance, people should halve the amount of sugar in their diet.

The recommended sugar intake will stay at below 10% of total calorie intake a day, with 5% the target, says the WHO.

The suggested limits apply to all sugars added to food, as well as sugar naturally present in honey, syrups, fruit juices and fruit concentrates.

The recommendation that sugar should account for no more than 10% of the calories in the diet, was passed in 2002.


It works out at about 50g a day for an adult of normal weight, said the WHO.

The WHO recommended sugar intake will stay at below 10 percent of total calorie intake a day, with 5 percent the target

The WHO recommended sugar intake will stay at below 10 percent of total calorie intake a day, with 5 percent the target

However, a number of experts now think 10% is too high, amid rising obesity levels around the world.

Announcing the new draft measures, the WHO said in a statement: “WHO’s current recommendation, from 2002, is that sugars should make up less than 10% of total energy intake per day.

“The new draft guideline also proposes that sugars should be less than 10% of total energy intake per day.

“It further suggests that a reduction to below 5% of total energy intake per day would have additional benefits.”

Dr. Francesco Branca, WHO’s nutrition director, told a news conference that the 10% target was a “strong recommendation” while the 5% target was “conditional”, based on current evidence.

“We should aim for 5% if we can,” he added.

The plans will now go for public consultation, with firm recommendations expected this summer.