Easy Ways to Cut Sugar from Your Diet
Reducing the amount of sugar in our diet is important to maintaining a heart-healthy lifestyle and reducing or preventing conditions such as pre-diabetes or diabetes. Sugars are found in our favorite drinks such as sodas, desserts, and candies.
These products provide us with empty calories and result in weight gain and excessive glucose blood sugar spikes. There are easy practices we can follow to reduce the amount of sugar in our foods.
Reduce the use of table sugar.
This includes the use of brown or white sugar, molasses, honey, or syrup. Reduce the amount of sugar by decreasing the amount of pancake syrup, sugar added to your tea or coffee, and in your cereal. You can continually reduce the quantity over time to eventually eliminate these forms of sugars in your food.
Read the food labels on products.
Look for added sugars on food labels and choose those products with the lowest quantities of sugars added. Food labels will identify sugars that are added to the products. It should be noted that dairy products and fruit also contain natural sugars.
Eliminate soda from your diet.
Soda contains a large amount of sugar. Reduce the amount of soda you consume gradually one can at a time. Replacing the soda with water is the best option to choose from. You may sweeten water without using sugar or artificial sweeteners with the use of whole fruits such as strawberry, pineapples, blueberries, raspberries, and lemons.
These fruits will infuse their flavors when added to a pitcher or glass of water and left for four or more hours. You may also use vegetables such as cucumber, tomatoes, and ginger to infuse their flavors into drinking water.
Add more fruits to your meals.
You may use fruits to replace sugars you typically add to your breakfast oatmeal or cereal. Instead, add fresh fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, bananas, and apples to these breakfast meals instead of sugar. Additionally, you may add dried fruits such as apricots, raisins, or cranberries.
Choose fresh, canned, frozen, or dried fruits. This will significantly reduce the amount of sugar you consume. When selecting canned fruit, make sure the fruit is packed in their natural fruit juices and not in heavy syrup. Before using canned fruit, be sure to thoroughly rinse and drain the fruit of any juice or syrup in the can.