You’ve likely heard and know that sugar has been added to SO many of the products we have access to these days. It can be difficult to get away from them if we are accustomed to the sugar content because it tastes good to us. That’s why reducing sugar intake can be a difficult task to take on. But there’s hope ..

 

First, let’s list a few of the ways that added sugar wrecks our bodies: weight increase and obesity, metabolic issues, inflammation, havoc on our immune systems, increased risk of heart disease and type II diabetes, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, tooth decay, as well as mental damage – increasing depression, anxiety, and lack of focus. Oh, and breakouts – anyone want less zits? Sure, we’re not entirely about the aesthetics here – but we definitely do feel better overall when we feel we look better.

 

Sugar is naturally found in foods such as fruit (fructose) and milk (lactose). Added sugars include any sugars or caloric sweeteners that are added to foods or beverages during processing or preparation (such as putting sugar in your coffee or adding sugar to your cereal). Added sugars (or added sweeteners) can include natural sugars such as white sugar, brown sugar and honey as well as other caloric sweeteners that are chemically manufactured (such as high fructose corn syrup).

 

You can use sugars to help enhance your diet. Adding a limited amount of sugar to improve the taste of foods (especially for children) that provide important nutrients, such as whole-grain cereal, low-fat milk or yogurt, is better than eating nutrient-poor, highly sweetened foods.

However, here are some products that you may not realize have added sugar (or rather the amount that they contain!): breakfast cereals, granola, oatmeal, protein bars, pasta sauces, canned soup, ketchup & BBQ sauces, gravy, salad dressing, coleslaw, bread & sandwiches, peanut butter, vitamin water, yogurt .. (more here!)

The next time you’re picking up a pre-made item from the grocery store, check the ingredients for the following: Anhydrous dextrose, brown sugar, cane crystals, cane sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, crystal dextrose, evaporated cane juice, fructose sweetener, fruit juice concentrates, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, liquid fructose, malt syrup, maple syrup, molasses, pancake syrup, raw sugar, sugar, syrup, white sugar, fructose, lactose, maltose, carbitol, concentrated fruit juice, corn sweetener, diglycerides, disaccharides, evaporated cane juice, erythritol, Florida crystals, fructooligosaccharides, galactose, glucitol, glucoamine, hexitol, inversol, isomalt, maltodextrin, malted barley, malts, mannitol, nectars, pentose, raisin syrup, ribose rice syrup, rice malt, rice syrup solids, sorbitol, sorghum, sucanat, sucanet, xylitol and zylose.

I know. That’s a big list.

One other thing to pay attention to: ingredients are listed by weight from most to least. So, the higher that a sweetener is in the ingredients list, the more that there is within it.

​​​​​​​Education and awareness can help us to make the best choices for our bodies!
Have a lovely weekend!
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