STRONG: Personal trainer Sharna Philp lost 30kg from increasing exercise and cutting sugar and carbs.
STRONG: Personal trainer Sharna Philp lost 30kg from increasing exercise and cutting sugar and carbs. Jordan Philp

Your daily sugar fix could be holding you back

PERSONAL trainer Sharna Philp says eating too much sugar caused a barrier between her and her weight loss goals.

Since cutting back on sugar and processed food, Sharna has lost 30kg and said she had more energy since giving up the sweet stuff.

"When I first started losing weight I didn't change my diet, I was just working out at the gym, but as soon as I started reducing my sugar and carb intake as well that's when I started noticing the difference," she said.

"I found I had more energy when I cut processed foods out of my diet."

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The healthy advice comes after the World Health Organisation updated their guidelines, advising people to only be eating a maximum of six teaspoons of sugar per day.

If you could cut back on sugar what would you do first?

This poll ended on 23 March 2016.

Current Results

Cut back on sugar from my coffee/tea


Read the labels and buy items with less sugar


Trade softdrink for soda water


Cut out sweets and trade them for fruit


None, I don't care if I'm eating too much sugar


This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

WHO department of nutrition and health development director Dr Francesco Branca said cutting sugar intake back to the recommended amount would go a long way to improve health.

"We have solid evidence that keeping intake of (sugar) to less than 10% of total energy intake reduces the risk of overweight, obesity and tooth decay," Dr Branca said.

"Making policy changes to support this will be key if countries are to live up to their commitments to reduce the burden of noncommunicable diseases."

Dr Branca said people should avoid processed food as much as possible, because it contained hidden sugars.

Associate professor Fiona Pelly, PhD candidate Sheri Cooper and Bachelor of nutrition and dietetics honours student Nina Meloncelli from the University of the Sunshine Coast's Fraser Coast campus have been studying the hidden sugars and fats in "healthy choice" children's' foods.

They found more than 60% of "healthy" foods fall into the same category as cakes and soft drinks, because of their high sugar content.

"We were trying to understand more about food such as cereals, yogurts, cheeses, savoury snacks and spreads, which are targeted at children and perhaps thought of as healthy options," Ms Meloncelli said.

"Of the 156 children's food products we analysed using two different methods, over 60 percent should be considered discretionary, meaning they really should only be eaten every now and then and in small amounts."

Ms Meloncelli said misleading packages could make it more difficult to avoid high sugar content.

"Nutrition content claims can be very misleading on product labels," She said.

"Parents have to first contend with packaged food specifically marketed to children and then navigate through an array of nutrition claims to determine which products are better.

"Statements such as 'made from real fruit' or 'contains wholegrains' can still be used even if the product contains plenty of the negative nutrients such as sugar."