We’ve known that getting too much sugar can be bad for us for years – but it’s now been suggested that a high sugar intake could well be associated with an elevated risk of mental health conditions like anxiety and depression in men.

Carried out by University College London’s Institute of Epidemiology and Health, the study found that men who consumed more than 67g of sugar a day had a 23 per cent increased risk of incident common mental disorders after five years when compared to those who consumed less than 39.5g.

Apparently, here in Britain adults consume around double the recommended intake of added sugar, with sweet foods and drinks contributing three-quarters of this intake.

Lead author of the report Anika Knüppel said: “There are numerous factors that influence chances for mood disorders, but having a diet high in sugary foods and drinks might be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. The study found no link between sugar intake and new mood disorders in women and it is unclear why. More research is needed to test the sugar-depression effect in large population samples.”

To reduce your sugar intake, try adding fresh fruit to your cereal or porridge instead of sugar, opt for plain yoghurt instead of sweetened, use spices in your cooking instead of sugar, or try making your own salad dressing.

When shopping, always read the labels so you know what’s in your food – and swap anything with high sugar content like Ketchup or mayonnaise with other options like hummus or plain mustard.

For more fitness nutritionist advice, get in touch with Rick Hay today.