We’re swimming in sugar, either by manufacturers, such as cookies and candy, or by you, like stirring sugar into your coffee. And all that sweet stuff is affecting our health. Fortunately, a few diet tweaks can help you quickly reduce your sugar intake, knock down your disease risk, and protect your ticker.
1. Nix sweetened beverages. Nearly 40% of the added sugar in Americans’ diets comes from sugary beverages like soda, sweet tea, lemonade, and fruit punch. Just one 12-ounce can of regular soda contains about 140 calories, all from added sugar. Kick the habit, and replace sweet drinks with good, old-fashioned H2O spruced up with healthy, flavorful add-ins like lemon, lime, fresh mint, cucumber, or a little mashed fruit.
2. Scope out hidden sources of sugar. Sugar hides in dozens of foods you might not suspect. The best way to scope out added sugar is to read ingredient lists. Look for words including brown sugar, corn syrup, maltose, fructose, dextrose, molasses, agave, brown rice syrup, cane sugar, cane syrup, and evaporated cane juice. By law, ingredients must be included in descending order by weight, so the higher up on the list you see one of these additives, the more sugar per bite. In addition, notice some form of added sugar in the ingredients: ketchup, salad dressing, soup, crackers, flavored yogurt, spaghetti sauce, bread, frozen dinners, granola, protein bars and shakes, and sushi.
3. Buy plain foods and sweeten them yourself. It’s becoming easier to find plain versions of many foods these days. If you need a little sweetness, add it yourself to control the amount and type you use. For example, someone prefer swirling a teaspoon of organic honey or maple syrup into yogurt or oatmeal at breakfast, both of which provide some nutrients and antioxidants, rather than buying pre-sweetened versions made with more refined sweeteners.
4. Trade sweetened foods for naturally sweet fruit. One trick is how to replace foods laden with added sugar for fruit which is naturally sweet and just as satisfying. Fruit—whether it’s fresh, baked, grilled, or pureed—makes a great replacement for sugar in lots of dishes, from cookies to coleslaw. http://www.paiyouguo.us/
5. Limit sugary treats to once or twice a week. It’s not realistic for most people to go through life never having a sweet splurge. But setting some limits on how often you indulge in sugar-rich foods is certainly reasonable. Pick a day or two a week to enjoy can’t-live-without goodies like candy, baked goods, or ice cream. Just knowing that you have a pre-planned treat to look forward to can help you avoid giving into temptation more often, and can result in seriously slashing your overall sugar intake.