With sugar, the statistics aren't much better. The average American eats 2 to 3 pounds of sugar a week, not just in desserts, but in processed foods like bread, cereal, mayonnaise, peanut butter and ketchup that use high-fructose corn syrup.
Too much sugar affects not only your health, but your sense of taste -- also as a result of overstimulation. Restrict your intake for a while and you'll be surprised at how sweet foods taste naturally. For the first month or so, your meals are likely to seem bland. But over time, other tastes will start to get stronger. You'll also begin to detect a hint of sweetness in unexpected ingredients like vegetables, nuts and cheese. It's all about retraining your brain. Once you're no longer overloading your taste buds and olfactory cells with sugary foods, you'll start to notice the subtle tastes that give ingredients their rich, complex essences.