50 Names for Sugar that Food Makers Use to Trick You

Did you know that the average American eats nearly 100 pounds of sugar per year?  For teenagers, the number climbs to nearly 150 pounds per year.

Why do we eat so much sugar?

Perhaps one of the reasons is that it is so prevalent in the food we eat.  Sugar is used to enhance the flavor of foods, add texture, and can also be used as a preservative in some foods.

Another reason we eat so much sugar could be that we’re just not aware of the many ways that food manufacturers sneak sugar into our diet.

Many years ago, you used to be able to look at the ingredient list and find out if a product contained sugar.

Today, it’s not that easy.  Food manufacturers are cleverly renaming sweeteners.  Because of this, it’s hard to know exactly what is in the food you eat..

50 Alternative Names for Sugar

1 – High Fructose Corn Syrup
2 – Sucrose
3 – Glucose
4 – Fructose
5 – Lactose
6 – Maltose
7 – Dextrose
8 – Honey
9 – Corn Syrup
10 – Invert Sugar
11 – Invert Sugar Syrup
12 – Molasses
13 – Brown Sugar

sugar blog

14 – Evaporated Cane Juice
15 – Sugar Cane Crystals
16 – Treacle
17 – Demerara Sugar
18 – Fruit Juice Crystals
19 – Dehydrated Fruit Juice
20 – Corn Sweetener
21 – Fruit Juice Concentrate (any fruit or even sugary vegetables such as beet juice!)
22 – Malt Syrup
23 – Raw Sugar
24 – Turbinado Sugar
25 – Syrup

26 – Muscovado Sugar
27 – Glucose Syrup
28 – Barbados Sugar
29 – Sorghum Syrup
30 -Refiner’s Syrup
31 – Beet Sugar
32 – Carob Syrup
33 – Table Sugar
34 – Malt
35 – Buttered Syrup
36 – Maple Syrup
37 – Rice Syrup
38 – Agave Nectar or Syrup

39 – Powdered Sugar
40 – Confectioner’s Sugar
41 – Corn Syrup Solids
42 – D-Mannose
43 – Sorbose
44 – Galactose
45 – Organic Raw Sugar
46 – Golden Sugar
47 – Date Sugar
48 – Castor Sugar
49 – Golden Syrup
50 – Raisin Syrup

Why Are There So Many Different Names for Sugar?

Food manufacturers are always thinking up new, even “healthy” sounding names for sugar.

One of the most clever names, in my opinion, is the sweetener Kashi uses in their GoLean Crunch Cereal: evaporated cane juice.  Since cane juice is pretty much just “sugar water” then evaporated sugar water leaves you with “sugar.”

No matter how organic or natural-sounding they try to make it, sugar is sugar and it can still cause damage to your teeth.

The Best Way to Find Out How Much Sugar Is In Food

Food manufacturers will undoubtedly come up with new names in the future for sugar.  The best way to see how much sugar is in something is by looking at the nutrition facts label on the back or side of the food item.  You can usually find this information under the Carbohydrates section (on U.S. food labels) and it will usually even say the word Sugars, followed by a certain number of grams.  No matter the exact sugar used, the overall number of grams is the key to finding out how much sugar is hiding in your food.


I’m sure I’ve missed some names…can you think of any other names for sugar?

If so, please leave them below in the comments so we’ll all know what to look out for in our food.

And while we’re on the subject, how do you feel about the way sugars are labeled in the foods you eat?…read more

Thanks for being our valued patients and friends!


Top image by Flickr user Tom Page used under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

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