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Ready meals are latest sugar shocker

Ready meals are latest sugar shocker

A shocking new survey has revealed some supermarket ready meals contain as much as 13 teaspoons of sugar.

Sugar has been a buzzword in the news recently, with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver keen to see the government impose a tax on sweet drinks. But it's not just hiding in fizzy pop - research carried out by Britain's The Telegraph newspaper and campaign group Action on Sugar exposed some microwave meals contain almost twice as much sugar as a can of full-fat Coca-Cola.

The worst offender was a sweet and sour chicken dish by Sainsbury's, which contains a whopping 61.2g of sugar (the equivalent of almost 13 teaspoons). The supermarket responded by promising to roll out reduced sugar dishes in the New Year (16).

“At Sainsbury’s we’ve been committed for many years to delivering consistent progress in this area," Judith Batchelar, director of Sainsbury’s Brand, said.

“We’re currently in the process of reformulating our oriental meal range and we’ll be able to announce our results in this area in January, launching a range of oriental meals that are better tasting, better for you products.”

A similar dish by Marks & Spencer contained almost as much sugar at 60g. Take into account that a can of full-fat Coca-Cole has 35g and it's a pretty shocking revelation.

A supermarket spokesperson responded by saying all food is clearly labelled with the nutritional content so shoppers can make informed decisions.

But Graham MacGregor, Action on Sugar's chairman and a professor of cardiovascular medicine, doesn't think enough is being done to tackle the issue.

“Fifty grams of sugar in any ready meal is far too much," he sighed. "The amount they are stuffing in is ridiculous. You wonder who on earth has the gall to put so much sugar in."

Other dishes containing more sugar than a Coke can include Waitrose's lemon chicken in batter with 42.6g and Tesco's pad Thai noodles with 37.8g.

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