Avoid Added Sugar in Your Diet
Being aware of added sugar in your diet is an important factor in any healthy lifestyle. Added sugars in desserts, sodas, juices and candy can add empty calories and lead to spikes in blood glucose levels. These are not the natural sugars present in fruit. Fruit contains fiber and other healthy nutrients that a balanced diet requires. Continue to enjoy fresh and frozen fruit as a sweet snack or meal, and use these tips to cut back on added sugars.
3 Ways to Avoid Added Sugar in Your Diet
1. Table Sugars.
If you add table sugar, honey or syrup to coffee, tea, pancakes or cereal, try reducing it or taking it out completely. Processed foods often have plenty of added sugar, and we do not need to add any more. Try cutting it in half at first and then gradually reducing the amount. This is the most obvious way to reduce added sugars in your diet.
2. Add Flavor.
Often, we use sugar to add flavor to drinks and baked goods. Spices like ginger, allspice, cinnamon and nutmeg add a lot of depth to foods without the sugar. Try cinnamon as a sugar substitute in your coffee. Extracts like almond, vanilla and orange can also add a hint of sweet without any added sugar. Try using them in baked goods and cutting the sugar in a recipe by half.
3. Read Food Labels.
Processed foods like soups, sauces, frozen meals and more are often full of unnecessary sugar. Start reading food labels to understand how much sugar is added to foods. Focus on lots of fresh produce, whole grains and lean meats in your diet. Start cooking simple recipes more often, as this is the easiest way to control what goes into your meals.
Hungry for more ideas on how to avoid added sugar in your diet? Head to KareBoost Health to learn more about how our health coach, Dr. Karen, can help you reach your goals and stick to them.
Karen L Leibowitz, MD
Health and Lifestyle Coach