Although summer is nearly here, it’s never too late to try to lose a few kilograms by cutting down on your sugar intake.
Here’s 10 great ways you can cut back on sugar today.
1. Sugar substitutes in your coffee
The next time you order or make a coffee, go for a natural sweetener. The most common two are stevia and xylitol (both from plants) although there are a few others currently on the market. If you’re in a cafe it’s not uncommon now to see them on the table.
2. Cut down or cut out soft drinks and sweetened fruit juices
We all know how full of sugar a can of Coke has, but you’d be surprised how much sugar is added to many brands of orange juice.
Go for a non-sugar added juice or a small amount of diet soft drink, although artificial sweeteners aren’t good for you either in excess.
3. Check your yoghurt
You would think yoghurt is good for you, and while natural yoghurt is, like orange juice yoghurt makers often add sugar to their products, and not a little either: some yoghurts have 5 grams of sugar per serving!
Buy yoghurt naturally sweetened with fruit or buy plain yoghurt then add your favourites to it.
4. Substitute berries for biscuits
OK, giving up the occasional luxury of an indulgent chocolate biscuit may be a step too far, but if you’re prone to snack, have a bag of berries handy.
Berries offer fibre and antioxidants, and are naturally sweet.
5. Watch out for salad dressing
Eating lots of salad is a good thing, but what many don’t know is that salad dressings often come with serious amounts of added sugar.
To make things even more confusing “low fat” salad dressings often have more sugar!
Check the bottle if you’re buying one, or alternatively make your own with olive oil and herbs.
6. Whole grains for breakfast
We all know that Coco Pops is full of sugar, but would you have guessed that many of the so-called “healthy” cereals in the supermarket are also jam packed full of sugar as well?
Your best best is to stick to whole grains, then add a moderate amount honey for sweetness, with the bonus that honey is good for you. Yes, there are calories in honey, but the flip is that it is a whole food, not a processed sweetener.
7. Limit packaged foods
The supermarket may be full of low fat foods these days, but many still pack sugar and salt to boost the flavour.
If you can’t avoid them, check the box to make sure you know what’s in them.
8. Sauces are a source of sugar
Did you know that BBQ sauce has a staggering 50% added sugar, and even a basic tomato sauce has 25%?
Mustard is a healthier alternative.
9. Sports drinks aren’t sporty
They may be great at the gym, but sports drinks hit the spot so well by giving you a big hit of sugar. One 600ml bottle of sports drink can have up to 10 tea spoons of sugar in it.
Stick to water, it’s guaranteed to be sugar free!
10. “Health bars” aren’t healthy either
If you thought that “health bars” are healthy, it turns out that they are anything but, often coming pack with teaspoons of sugar.
You can make your own, or better still, stick to fruit.