Although sugar consumption has decreased in recent years, we still eat around 40kg per person per year.
Much of the sugar is hidden in processed foods, leading to weight problems and obesity.
High sugar consumption also contributes indirectly to diseases such as osteoporosis, heart disease and cancer.
So, we offer 12 quick tips on how you can avoid consuming too much sugar.
This may be stating the obvious but many common recipes including those for vegetables, soups, casseroles and sauces call for sugar to add sweetness. However, in most cases, it’s just simply not needed!
This might be a tough one for many of us but a tub in the freezer is a constant temptation!
Have you ever thought about the sugar content of a cosmopolitan cocktail or a margarita?
Drink mixers and many alcoholic beverages are usally loaded with sugar.
Stick with beer or wine, or, if you prefer spirits, mix them only with unsweetened fizzy water or drink them straight.
Dip fresh strawberries into low-fat chocolate sauce, scatter chocolate sprinkles over your plain yogurt or eat a mini-piece of dark chocolate.
Think rich and decadent but in tiny portions 😉
When you go without breakfast, lunch or dinner, your blood-glucose levels drop, and that propels you towards high-sugar (often convenience) foods to quell your cravings.
Many breakfast cereals are full of sugar. Ideally, you want one with less than 10g of added sugar per 100g serving, or even better, one that is unsweetened altogether.
You can use diced fruit instead to sweeten your cereal.
Decide to have dessert only after dinner, never after lunch, for example.
Or eat dessert only on odd days of the month, or just at weekends or in restaurants.
If you have a sweet tooth, satisty your craving for cakes and biscuits with a piece of fruit.
Next time you crave a chocolate bar, reach for a juicy peach instead.
Keep a packet of dried apricots in your bag, desk or car for ’emergencies’.
Seek out substitutes with saccharin, aspartame, stevia, acesulfame potassium and sucralose all commercially available, you can still get the sweetness of sugar without the calories.
These sweeteners can be particularly useful as part of a diabetic diet.
Start of by :
a. Mixing half a standard fizzy drink with half a diet version
b. Mixing half a tub of sweetened yogurt with half a tub of plain yogurt
c. Mixing half a glass of juice with half a glass of fizzy water.
Do this for two weeks, then cut back to a quarter sweetened to three-quarters unsweetened.
Continue until you’re taking only the unsweetened version.
If you normally have two chocolate bars a day, cut down to one. Then, next week, have one every other day. The following week, have one every three days, until you’re down to just one a week.
Another example : if you normally take 2 teaspoons of sugar in your coffee, use ne same routine, cutting down gradually to 2 teaspoon or none at all.
Chewing gum, mints, bottled sauces and salad dressings, baked beans and cold meats often contain sugar.
In fact, even some prescription medicines contain sugar!
So, carefully scan every food label, and choose sugar-free and reduced-sugar alternatives when available.