Too Many Names for Sugar: Which Ones to Avoid!

As I’ve mentioned before, added sugar is considered the most dangerous part of the Standard American Diet. It’s no longer just reserved for sweets anymore and instead found in soooo many different products including breads, crackers, snack foods, yogurts and even salad dressings.

The really tricky part though is that added sugar is listed under a variety of different names that could easily be overlooked. Plus, even if you do a quick check to make sure it’s not among the top three ingredients listed (and what the product contains the most of), you could miss the fact that many companies use three or four different types of added sugar in a single product, so they will all end up lower on the list. Sneaky, I know!

Below are all the names we found … I know it’s a lot to look out for when checking ingredient labels, but I promise this is an important one!

All the different names for sugar on 100 Days of Real Food

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Names for Added, Refined Sugar*

  1. Agave nectar
  2. Barbados sugar
  3. Barley malt
  4. Barley malt syrup
  5. Beet sugar
  6. Brown sugar
  7. Buttered syrup
  8. Cane juice
  9. Cane juice crystals
  10. Cane sugar
  11. Caramel
  12. Carob syrup
  13. Castor sugar
  14. Coconut palm sugar
  15. Coconut sugar
  16. Confectioner’s sugar
  17. Corn sweetener
  18. Corn syrup
  19. Corn syrup solids
  20. Date sugar
  21. Dehydrated cane juice
  22. Demerara sugar
  23. Dextrin
  24. Dextrose
  25. Evaporated cane juice
  26. Free-flowing brown sugars
  27. Fructose
  28. Fruit juice concentrate
  29. Glucose
  30. Glucose solids
  31. Golden sugar
  32. Golden syrup
  33. Grape sugar
  34. HFCS (High-Fructose Corn Syrup)
  35. Icing sugar
  36. Invert sugar
  37. Malt syrup
  38. Maltodextrin
  39. Maltol
  40. Maltose
  41. Mannose
  42. Molasses
  43. Muscovado
  44. Palm sugar
  45. Panocha
  46. Powdered sugar
  47. Raw sugar
  48. Refiner’s syrup
  49. Rice syrup
  50. Saccharose
  51. Sorghum syrup
  52. Sucrose
  53. Sugar (granulated)
  54. Sweet sorghum
  55. Syrup
  56. Treacle
  57. Turbinado sugar
  58. Yellow sugar

Also be on the lookout for Unrefined, Added Sugar…

  1. Honey
  2. Pure maple syrup

*Source: Sugar Science

Once again sugar itself is not the problem – it’s the quantity in which it’s being consumed. So if you’re going to indulge in some of these sweet ingredients just make sure you don’t exceed the recommended daily allowance for added sugar, which is 6 teaspoons (24 grams) for women, 9 teaspoons (36 grams) for men, and 3 teaspoons (12 grams) for children.

Did I miss any names for sugar on this list? If so, please share below in the comments!

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29 thoughts on “Too Many Names for Sugar: Which Ones to Avoid!”

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  1. Alcohol sugar should be added to this list.
    I was shocked to learn there was such an ingredient in my sugar free pancake syrup.

    1. Hi Ann, Alcohol sugar is not technically a sugar. It is an alcohol that is used in sugar free products as a replacement for sugar. So your sugar free pancake syrup is sugar free. Sugar alcohol is in those diabetic friendly foods,since not sugar diabetics can consume it. I believe that is why it was developed, more as a medical food replacement, but of course it has made its way into a lot of foods to make it sugar free, “health food washed”. However, it is not natural and has its own side effects, some of which are not pleasant if you consume much of it!

      1. Stevia is from a plant and doesn’t have any side effects. Sugar alcohols can cause digestive issues.

      2. “Not pleasant” – for me that meant an entire afternoon spent in the work bathroom when I accidentally ate 2 sugar-free mini peppermint patties!!

  2. I have understood date sugar (have to read the labels of course) was simply dried dates that were ground to a sugar consistency. A whole food. It will not dissolve in liquids of course, but not refined, if you get one that is organic, or labeled without all the additives. Is this true?

  3. Katherine Steiner

    I’m currently reading a book called ‘Ingredients: A Visual Exploration of 75 Food Additives and 25 Food Products’ by Dwight Eschliman that might be of interest to those interested in this blog post.

  4. The problem is more than added sugar: its the ‘simple’ sugars. These are currently listed on food labels. Whatever the source, they need to be assessed. If the food is ‘natural’, check a nutritional database. Unless you know what you put in your mouth, you can’t get basic control of your body.

  5. Thank you for the list. A good reminder of things to watch for on food labels. I don’t know if it technically is a “Sugar” but stevia is very sweet!

  6. I recently came across monk sugar? on a label. What is that? The item was tagged as not artificially sweetened.

  7. rebiana, erythritol A.K.A. Truvia is created by Coca Cola, and is actually from Corn…since it would be impossible to commercially farm enough from the fruit plants to sell en mass.