Sugar is definitely my weakness when it comes to food. However, I have cut down and cut out probably half of the sugar that I ate a year ago. And I do notice a difference! I’ve lost weight, I have a greater sensitivity towards sweet foods and I feel better overall.
I read a health magazine that says “women should not eat more than 6 teaspoons of sugar a day.” What?? Only 6 teaspoons! That’s like my breakfast and coffee, and nothing else! I’m not there yet. And besides knowing that healthy low sugar foods cost twice as much does not help my conservative food budget either.
Here’s another sugar fact from a Rite Aid Wellness newsletter:
The average American consumes more than 22 teaspoons, or 355 calories, of added sugars per day. That means sugars that are put into the foods you eat, rather than those that occur naturally in fruits, vegetables, and other unprocessed products.
Eating excessive amounts of sugar can lead to more than weight gain; it can also have an adverse affect on your heart, fluctuate cholesterol levels, and diabetic symptoms as well as tooth decay.
Here is what you need to look for on food labels (get in the mindset of reading food labels ALL THE TIME):
- Cane juice or syrup
- Corn sweetener or syrup
- Dextrose, fructose, or glucose
- Lactose or maltose
Sugar that comes from natural fruits is just a bit better than its processed counterpart, but anything in excess can be bad for you. Women should limit themselves to 25g or 100 calories a day from sugar while men should opt for 37g or 150 calories a day. 1 gram equals about 4 calories, so skip on the colas, sweet teas (like I did), juice boxes, and that convenience store energy bar – they all contain too much sugar for you.
Add more whole grains, whole wheat flour, dried fruits and bite-sized veggies to your daily food intake to stave off the sugar cravings. Because the more sugar you eat, the more you want to eat and you know where that will take you, right?
What is 1 type of sugary food that you have given up or would like to eat less of? Let’s build a list and make a pact to decrease our intake of it. I have excluded bottled sweetened teas and instead carry a 24oz stainless steel bottle of unsweetened green iced tea with me now.