Sugar is really very difficult to reduce in your diet. It’s everywhere and it is very difficult to manage sugar cravings. I know this as I used to be a sugar addict.
Today I’m going to share my best tips to reduce sugar in our diet without going crazy. How to reduce it is the majorquestion now. I’m going to share with some practical tips to reduce the sugar. I am sharing what all I have learned from my own experience because I was a sugar addict. So I hope these things ll also work for you.
How To Reduce Sugar In Your Diet Tips
- Read the labels of processed foods. Try to stick to whole foods, but sometimes you wany to eat the processed foods. Now the questions is how to know if we are having too much sugar or not. Make a habit to read the labels. Read all the listed ingredients that are used to make the food. The most used ingredient is typically the one that is listed on top and the least quantity used is listed in the last. As sugar has 60 different name and we really don’t know all . The words that end with -OSE. ose are different names of sugar like Glucose, fructose, dextrose. Also check for the syrups as they are also a substitute of sugar like brown rice syrup, malt syrup ,fructose corn syrup etc. So don’t take sugar in any kind.
- Have more of whole foods Whole foods are foods that are in their natural form for example, fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts, seeds, etc. There are no added sugars in whole food. So if you have a diet that include whole foods you automatically reduce the amount of sugar in your diet.
- Do not drink your calories. One of the simplest ways to have too much sugar is to drink it. Whenever we drink something we tend to drink more sugar than in routine ad it doesn’t feel we’re getting too much of it. So whenever you drinking something, always keep in mind the amount of sugar in it. Always ask for sugar free beverages whenever you are going to a cafe. Like If you are having an iced tea or an iced coffee, try to get it sugar free. And if you’re having bottled or tinned beverages, refer to point 1, which was to read the label. So avoid drinking all of your calories in the form of sugar.
- Don’t get carried away with the natural sweeteners. When we transitioned from a high sugar diet to a low sugar diet, we start using white sugar to using things like coconut sugar, maple syrup honey and brown rie syrup. I used all these natural sweeteners and you know what? Generally we replace our white sugar addiction with a natural sugar addiction. Now I’m not saying you can never have natural sugar. Just keep in mind that is very concentrated and it isn’t as good for your health as having fresh fruit.
- Eat more protein. When you don’t eat enough protein with every single meal, your blood sugar tends to be a little bit erratic. So let’s say you have breakfast, it’s a sugary breakfast cereal with a little bit of milk. And you’re out the door at around 8 o’clock. So you’ve had your breakfast around 7:30. By the time 10:30 rolls around you’re probably going to be hungry. That’s because your breakfast didn’t have enough protein and it had too much sugar. So your blood sugar went up and then you had that dip and during that dip, you have that sugar craving. Now if you want to prevent that sugar craving, a good idea is to get enough protein with every single meal. So you must have at least 15-20 grams of protein as a minimum per meal, so you’re getting your protein throughout the day and you’re stabilizing your blood sugar levels and you’re not going to have those cravings.
- Eat more fat, this is along the same lines as eat more protein. So basically when you eat enough fat with all of your meals, you’re less likely to have those sugar cravings because your blood sugar levels are stable and you’re fuller for longer. So you must eat fats from whole foods sources, not from things like oil. Because when you have fat from whole food sources, you’re actually getting all of the nutrition. So let me give you an example. Let’s say you were to compare avocado oil to avocados. Avocado oil is just a pure fat – there is nothing in there by fat. But avocados have vitamins such as vitamin B, they have the K vitamin, they also have vitamin E and fibre. So when you’re getting your fat from avocado, actual avocado, not the oil, you’re getting a lot more nutrient bang for your buck. Try to stick to whole food sources whenever possible for your meals. So you can have avocado, nuts, seeds, coconut, that sort of thing. Limit your oils.
- Remove temptation. Now if you have sugary snacks lying in your cupboard, you’re more likely to eat them. It’s because they are right there. You’re not going to have sugary snacks if they are not in your home. So it’s sort of like an out of sight, out of mind situation.
- Have low sugar snacks Just because you can’t have the sugary snacks, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy yourself. So I recommend keeping some low sugar snacks around at home. You can keep freshly cut fruit in your fridge if that helps, but sometimes you want something a little extra. So one simple thing that you could do is frozen grapes. So grapes are naturally very sweet and once you freeze them, they take on a very different texture and they become a little bit more enjoyable. Now frozen grapes is one thing. The second thing you can do is frozen bananas. You can actually make frozen banana popsicles. So take a ripe banana, peel it, put a popsicle stick in it if you have one, you don’t have to use a popsicle stick. Put it in the freezer for 24 hours or until it completely hardens. And the next day when you have that sugar craving, you can actually take that frozen banana, dip it in a little bit of melted dark chocolate, put some shredded coconut on top and you have a frozen banana popsicle. It’s got fruit, it’s got healthy fat from the coconut and it’s got dark chocolate. You cant go wrong with that.
- Don’t use sugar as a way to relieve stress. Now when I was in engineering, I used to have a lot of sugar. I was very stressed out and sugar was the first thing I reached for as form of stress relief. Now sugar does lower your stress, however it’s a short term solution, it’s not a long term solution. I have realized over the years that the best way to manage your stress, is not through food, it’s not through sugar, it’s through other avenues. Things like meditation, yoga, going for a walk in the park, having a bubble bath, anything that works for you. Anything that reduces your stress is a good way to do it. One of the things I find In helps with stress management is self-care.
- Never say never. The problem with having a black and white approach to sugar is that it doesn’t work long-term. Life is about finding balance. Now I’m not saying to have sugar in moderation because I don’t think you can have sugar in moderation. It is very difficult to stay in the moderation zone. But having sugar occasionally, when they occasion warrants it is not a problem. Let me give you an example. Let’s say it’s your grandmother’s birthday and she has baked a cake all by herself for her birthday. Are you gonna say no to that? I don’t think so. Because that’s a special occasion. That’s an occasion that warrants having a piece of cake. You don’t have to have the whole thing – you could share it with somebody. But sometimes it’s ok to have the sugar, so give yourself that allowance. Alot of things in life, nutrition included, are about finding balance, so find that balance that works for you.