Calorie count

Sugar v fat and other nutrients: get the facts

You might be surprised to know that, apart from fibre, sugar has no more calories than any other ingredient. On a gram for gram basis, sugars and starch, as well as protein, contain similar amounts of calories, while fat actually contains more than twice as many. So products with ‘reduced sugars’ or ‘no added sugars’ are not necessarily lower in calories compared to the original product.

The reason for this is say a manufacturer reduces the amount of sugar in a biscuit or cake, a product that also contains fat. This often results in fat then making up a higher proportion of the total product weight. Because fat contains twice as many calories as sugar, the new product containing less sugar could actually contain more calories per 100g than the original!



  • Over 90% of the sugars found in an everyday tomato pasta sauce come from the tomatoes themselves – not from sugar added during the cooking process.
  • Many people think that lots of sugar is added to low-fat yoghurt. Actually, it usually only contains lactose - milk’s naturally occurring sugar.