Sugars are common components of our diets, found naturally in fruits, vegetables, milk and honey. They are added to a wide range of foods and drinks, such as fruit juices, jams and marmalades, breakfast bars and cereals, sauces, soft drinks, desserts, and other sweet treats.

In addition to providing sweetness, sugars are a major source of energy. Their overconsumption has been linked with obesity and dental caries, so they are best enjoyed in moderation.

For us all

For health professionals

What is glucose-fructose syrup? (Q&A)

05 April 2018

Glucose-Fructose Syrup is a liquid made of starch, used in the manufacturing of foods and drinks due to its taste and the ability to blend with other ingredients. Is it good or bad for our health?

Should we cut the carbs and opt for fats? 

06 October 2017

Recent media headlines claim that low-fat diets could increase your risk of early death by almost one quarter.  However, the coverage is based on a study that mainly looked at people in lower- and middle- income countries outside Europe, so it may not be relevant for the general European population.

Fructose and metabolic health

02 December 2014

Fructose has undergone a lot of scrutiny recently regarding its impact on metabolic indicators of health. We looked at how fructose is metabolised and the current evidence of how this affects health...


11 May 2014

Honey is a natural ingredient used for its sweetness, energy and potential health benefits.  This article explores how honey is made, describes its composition, and discusses research on its reported health effects.

Replacing sugars: Rationale, benefits and challenges

28 April 2014

Food and beverage companies are reformulating foods, i.e. changing the composition of processed foods, including the reduction of sugars. However food reformulation is no simple task...

Highlights from the 20th International Congress of Nutrition (ICN), Granada 2013

20 September 2013

The 20th edition of the International Congress of Nutrition took place in Granada, Spain, from 15th to the 20th September 2013. The European Food Information Council has interviewed a number of key scientists to create this podcast with conference highlights.

Addressing common questions about sugars

03 June 2013

Sugars are common components of modern-day diets. They are found in a wide range of foods and drinks, including fruits and fruit juices, honey, jams and marmalades, soft drinks, desserts...

Glucose and mental performance

30 April 2013

Glucose is a type of sugar which the brain depends on for fuel. Studies show that dips in glucose availability can have a negative impact on attention, memory and learning...

Sugars from a food technology perspective

06 March 2013

The word “sugar” brings to mind the white crystals that make our lives sweeter. However, sugars are not only used as sweeteners but have important technological functions in foods...

Fructose: Is public health action necessary?

07 November 2012

Public health policies should focus on promoting a healthy lifestyle that includes physical activity, fresh fruits and vegetables, and a moderate caloric intake, rather than targeting fructose in the diet...


31 July 2012

Carbohydrates are one of the three macronutrients in our diet (fat and protein being the others). They exist in many forms and are mainly found in starchy foods such as bread, pasta, and rice, as well as in some beverages, e.g. fruit juices and sugar-sweetened drinks.