Excessive sugar consumption is toxic and can be attributed to various diet-related diseases and conditions in the US, according to University of California pediatric endocrinologist Robert Lustig.

Sugar is one of the important sweeteners widely available and most commonly used by the food industry in baked goods as it provides sweetness without any flavors; however, the amount of sugar in American diet is unprecedented, and is believed to contribute to obesity, type II diabetes, hypertension and heart disease.

University of California pediatric endocrinologist Robert Lustig told CBS News that the main reason behind obese children falling sick in the country is the added sugar in their diet.

The high consumption of sugar causes an euphoric effect that activates dopamine, the chemical that controls pleasure in the brain, he said.

A new research at University of California-Davis has also observed that high sugar consumption can be toxic.

This five-year research project, being conducted by nutritional biologist Kimber Stanhope, reveals that high fructose corn syrup consumption is associated to heart disease and stroke.

Stanhope told the television network that the liver gets overloaded with fructose and then converts it to fat, which gets into the bloodstream and creates small dense LDL and forms plaque in the arteries.

Sugar is found not just in the added sweeteners, but also in foods such as breads, yogurt, peanut butter and sauces.

The American Heart Association study recommends men to limit their intake of added sweeteners to 150 calories a day, and women to only 100 calories, however, an average American today is believed to consume 22 teaspoons of sugar per day or 17 four-lb bags of sugar per year.