With Valentine’s day just around the corner, Aussies are being urged to take steps to protect their hearts.
Research from health app MyFitnessPal revealed that February ranked second behind January for the month with the highest sugar consumption.
On average, Aussies eat around 10,950 cubes of sugar each year – adding up to 2.5 times the recommended daily sugar intake.
Dr Ashish Misra from the Heart Research Institute said increasing excessive consumption could be having negative health implications, leading to obesity and heart disease.
“At the Heart Research Institute, we are using state-of-the-art technology to understand what happens to those sugars in the body, and the genetic and molecular pathways which lead to poor heart health,” Dr Misra said.
“This heart health month, I’d encourage anyone looking to make a positive change to their heart health to reduce their sugar intake.”
MyFitnessPal is now encouraging Australians to ditch sugary foods and instead opt for alternative, low-sugar options to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
Recent data shows around 64 per cent of Australians already want to cut back on sugar, with another 42 per cent wanting to reduce fat intake.
The globally celebrated “love day” usually involves romantic meals and boxes of sugar filled chocolates.
MyFitnessPal ambassador, author, nutritionist and fitness coach Luke Hines said opting to cook a homemade meal or share a fruit basket would have a better impact on your loved one’s heart.
“Making these small swaps can have a big impact on the health of your loved one’s heart,” he said.
In early February, the “Less Sweet, More Heart” installation was displayed in Australia as a reminder of the importance of reducing sugar intake.