- Want to improve your health and gain control over your addiction to sweet things? Keep reading to find out more.
- Reduce sugar cravings slowly
- Read labels – hidden sugars are everywhere
- On that note, don’t fall for artificial sweeteners
Want to improve your health and gain control over your addiction to sweet things? Keep reading to find out more.
According to the American Heart Association, the average American will eat around 77 grams of sugar per day – over three times the recommended daily amount of six teaspoons for women. As most people know, sugar content equals empty calories; sugar has no nutritional value and is instead just a tasty way to spike your blood sugar. And a heavy sugar habit can lead to weight gain, diabetes, and even heart disease. Here are some tips to help you reduce your sugar intake, lose weight, and stop sugar cravings dead in their tracks.
Reduce sugar cravings slowly
Make small dietary changes – don’t quit cold turkey.
Did you know that simple carbohydrates like white rice, pasta, and white bread are also called simple sugars? That’s because as soon as you eat them, they are immediately digested as glucose. As far as your body is concerned, they’re sugar.
The first step in your journey towards cutting out sugary foods and curbing your sugar craving is replacing these with whole grains. Opt for foods like brown rice, wholemeal sourdough, and lentil or pea pasta. Incorporate more protein from lean meats into your diet, as well as healthy fats like nuts, vegetables, and low-sugar fruit like berries. It’s much easier to reduce your sugar intake when you have a healthy diet. Eat regularly throughout the day and ensure you are getting enough calories – your brain and body will thank you.
Labels are great for understanding how much sugar is in your groceries (you’ll be amazed at how much added sugar), but they also tell you what sugars are used to make them. Did you know that brown rice syrup, high fructose corn syrup, brown sugar, and dextrose are all essentially sugar? Even though a food label might never mention the word ‘sugar’ in its ingredients list, the product could still be full of other forms of sugar, which all have the same effect. Even fruits like bananas and red apples have very high sugar content!
On that note, don’t fall for artificial sweeteners
Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could have endless comfort food like ice cream without worrying about what happens beyond your taste buds? Artificial sweeteners like aspartame (found in most diet soda) and saccharin (the main ingredient in Sweet’n Low) may not be traditional processed sugar, but they can still have the same effect
Cutting out sugar is about avoiding eating sugar in the first place, as well as ensuring that you have healthy replacements for when you do crave your usual sugary snacks. The sweet stuff is everywhere, but if you can avoid added sugars and have access to tasty replacement foods, you can overcome your unhealthy eating habits.
What happens if I mess up?
Don’t feel guilty about giving in to your sweet tooth every now and again. Just try to find a good, healthy replacement so that next time you crave sweet foods, you have some sweet treats with less sugar.
Look it up! If you don’t recognise something on a label, the best thing to do is search for it online. You may be surprised about what is in the foods you’re eating.