how much sugar sweet tea

how much sugar sweet tea

How Much Sugar Is in Sweet Tea?

Sweet tea is a popular beverage in the South but it’s not all sunshine and rainbows, as it typically contains quite a bit of sugar. But just how much sugar is typically in a cup or glass of sweet tea?

A Closer Look at Sweet Tea

Sweet tea is a beverage that consists of steeped tea sweetened with sugar. The amount of sugar added can vary significantly based on preference, though 8 to 10 teaspoons of sugar is typically used to make a gallon of sweet tea.

This means there’s typically 32-40 grams of sugar in a single 8 ounce cup of sweet tea. That’s more than twice the amount of sugar recommended for adults in a full day, according to the American Heart Association.

How Much Sugar Is Too Much?

The average adult should consume no more than 36 grams, or 9 teaspoons of added sugar per day. That means just one cup of sweet tea can account for more than half the American Heart Association’s recommendation. Therefore, consuming an entire gallon of sweet tea could exceed the AHA’s recommended sugar limit.

It’s important to take into account the sugar added to sweet tea in order to maintain a balanced diet. Even though sweet tea is often seen as a refreshing treat, it can contain an excessive amount of sugar.

Healthier Alternatives to Sweet Tea

There are often healthier alternatives to sugary drinks such as sweet tea. Here are some suggestions:

  • Unsweetened Tea: Plain tea can still be a refreshing drink while avoiding a large amount of sugar. Just be sure to check the label to make sure the tea is unflavored.
  • Flavored Water: Without adding any sugar, you can infuse plain water with fresh fruit or vegetables such as cucumber and strawberries.
  • Sugar Substitutes: If you’re looking for a sweet drink without the sugar you can use natural sweeteners such as agave, honey, or stevia.

No matter what drink you decide to go with, be sure to read labels and understand exactly how much sugar is in each serving. That way, you can make sure you’re not exceeding your daily recommended sugar limit.


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