Marla Ahlgrimm R.Ph.

Marla Ahlgrimm | Retired Pharmacist | Leading Expert in Women's Health

Sneaky Sugar | Marla Ahlgrimm

Marla AhlgrimmSugar is certainly a sweet treat, but one that can cause a host of health conditions including heart disease, diabetes, and, more prevalently, obesity. And, according to Marla Ahlgrimm, sugar has a way of sneaking into foods you might not consider.

Here, Marla Ahlgrimm lists a few of the most innocent-looking foods that have a dark, sucrose-filled secret.

Protein bars

They might look healthy, with clever marketing images of fitness buffs running through the open hills right there on the packaging. But, some protein bars can contain as much – or more – sugar than a candy bar.


What’s healthier than a bowl of yogurt topped with fresh, crunchy nuts, oats, granola? A lot, actually. Marla Ahlgrimm explains that most commercially-packaged granola wasn’t designed with your waist in mind. Clever packaging may list ingredients such as rice malt, evaporated cane juice, and molasses instead of sugar, but make no mistake, sugar by any other name is sugar just the same.


Your kids’ Lucky Charms may actually have less sugar than those boring-looking boxes of processed carbohydrates you’ve been dumping into your own bowl. Even so-called “healthy” cereals can contain 18 g of sugar per serving. Marla Ahlgrimm notes that serving sizes, too, are important. Most cereals have a serving size of just ¾ to 1 cup – the average bowl will easily hold 2 cups or more.

Tomato sauce

Tomatoes are one of the healthiest foods on the planet and contain an amazing amount of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which are all important for overall health and wellness. However, Marla Ahlgrimm points out that those tomato-based pasta sauces sold in stores can contain up to 12 g – or 4 teaspoons – of sugar in each half cup serving. Go ahead, measure that out yourself and you will get a better idea of just exactly how much sugar is sneaking its way into your diet each and every day.


Author: Marla Ahlgrimm

Pharmacist Marla Ahlgrimm revolutionized the field of women’s health in the 1970s and continues to do so today. After introducing the term “premenstrual syndrome” to the American public in the late 1970s, Marla Ahlgrimm has continued to focus her pharmacy practice over the years to successfully address hormone concerns that affect women as they age. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Marla Ahlgrimm co-founded Madison Pharmacy Associates, and it was there she fine tuned individualized care protocols and prescription medication to optimize a woman’s hormonal health. One of the first hormone issues that Marla tackled was Premenstrual Syndrome, or PMS. At that time, there were no diagnosis or treatment options to address the severe symptoms that many women were reporting. As a result of Marla Ahlgrimm ’s intense attention to women’s health, Madison Pharmacy Associates gained a national reputation as an innovative practice. Founded in 1982, Madison Pharmacy Associates was the first pharmacy to special in women’s health in the nation. Thanks to the expertise of Marla Ahlgrimm, Madison Pharmacy Associates became known for the management of PMS. Over the years, Madison Pharmacy Associates evolved with Marla Ahlgrimm’s careful guidance, providing the national PMS Access newsletter, as well as a toll-free line where patients could obtain referrals to physicians who had the expertise to help them manage their symptoms. Marla Ahlgrimm founded Women’s Health America, Inc. in 1993 to help women by providing individualized hormonal medications to address the complex health issues of women and also to provide practical, helpful women’s health information. Over the years, Marla Ahlgrimm’s vision has grown to include Women’s Health America, Madison Pharmacy Associates, PMS Access and Cyclin Pharmaceuticals. In addition to her accomplishments with these landmark organizations, Marla Ahlgrimm is an author, having published two watershed books, The HRT Solution and Self-Help for Premenstrual Syndrome. Marla Ahlgrimm has also been published in numerous national publications, including serving as a columnist for The American Journal of Natural Medicine. Today, the primary work of Marla Ahlgrimm centers on natural hormone therapy, an important area for the large number of women who are menopausal and postmenopausal. Marla Ahlgrimm ’s work is unique because of her focus on individualized, natural hormone therapy options. According to pharmacist, Marla Ahlgrimm, many health issues facing women today are related to hormone changes. Using an individualized approach to therapy, she reports that many women feel reenergized for the first time in years. In addition to recognition in publications and journals, Marla Ahlgrimm has been recognized with a number awards over the span of her career. Some of Marla Ahlgrimm ’s most notable awards have been the YWCA’s acknowledgment of Marla Ahlgrimm as one of its Women of Distinction and recognition by her alma mater, the University of Wisconsin, as one of its Distinguished Alumni. Above all of the awards and honors, Marla Ahlgrimm finds that helping so many women is the greatest accomplishment of all. In fact, says Marla Ahlgrimm, she still works with some of her very first patients and their doctors. These women once sought the help of Marla Ahlgrimm for PMS, she says, and today she is helping them manage symptoms of menopause and the years that follow.

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