The impact that sugar can have on our health is becoming more and more documented. Concerns are rising, not just amongst the health industry, but in households, schools and workplaces across the UK.
The basic facts are that sugar:
- Has no nutritional benefits
- Can be bad for your teeth
- Can cause problems with your liver
- Can lead to diabetes
- Can increase your chance of getting cancer
- Can promote fat gain
- Can raise cholesterol
- Can increase your chance of heart disease
Sugar is addictive and breaking the cycle can be really hard. Depending on your personality type you may find that cutting down gradually is better than going cold turkey.
These tips may help:
1) Eat more protein. Eating high-carbohydrate, sugar-rich foods provides an almost instantaneous energy boost, which is why many people prefer and even crave these foods throughout the day. But the initial “sugar rush” that results from eating such foods quickly fades, leaving a person down in the dumps until the next sugar fix, perpetuating an endless cycle of “highs” and “lows” that put a serious strain on adrenal function.
Protein-rich foods like meat, nuts, and beans, on the other hand, provide a steady and balanced source of energy for your body, which can help eliminate cravings for empty sweets. Try to include protein with every meal and snack on protein such as nuts and hummus.
2) Eat more healthy fats. Fats fill you up and don’t cause rises in blood sugar. Your body needs Essential Fatty Acids, but it doesn’t need processed sugar.
Tuck into oils, nuts, seeds, avocados and milk, natural yogurt and butter occasionally too.
3) Satisfy your sweet tooth with natural non-processed sugars found in fruit, vegetables and honey. As well as the natural sugar they have other health benefits, and you are unlikely to overdose. You can still have cakes and desserts with slightly different ingredients, and your tastes will soon change. Check out the recipes on the Fitfish website (fit-fish.co.uk) where you will even find a very tasty recipe for healthy chocolate.
4) Watch the sauces, jars and packets as this is where most sugars are hidden. Cook from scratch as much as possible.
5) Mostly and Mainly. At Fitfish, we often say the phrase ‘It’s What you do Mostly that Matters’, and this is no different. Occasional sugar consumption is ok but regular is not. When you have something sugary, you should get to the point when you notice how sweet it is, and gradually it will become too sweet for regular consumption.
Take it slowly and enjoy the journey.