There are many reasons why you should look to remove sugar from your diet. The over-consumption of sugar has been linked with a range of illnesses, including:
• Cardiovascular conditions (such as coronary heart disease, abnormal blood pressure and stroke)
• Type 2 Diabetes
• Dental caries
It’s clear that too much sugar is simply bad for your body and your health, so if you consume foods that are high in sugar, you need to look at ways of replacing these foods
How to replace sugar in your diet
Once you start to become aware of your sugar intake and look for it on food labels, you will quickly start to realise just how often sugar is added to foods. Even foods that you don't associate with being overly sweet (like tomato sauce, crackers, condiments and salad dressings) can all still be packed with sugar.
Learn all the names for sugar
To read food labels and ingredient lists properly you will need to understand that there is more than one name for sugar. Sugar can be listed under many names, including high fructose corn syrup, dried cane syrup, invert sugar, molasses, sucrose and maple syrup. These can be listed separately on ingredients lists, so many foods, even those that seem healthy like yogurt and breakfast cereals, may contain three or four different types of sweetener. If several sugars appear on the label, it's an indication that the food is less healthy than you may think.
Cut back slowly
Removing sugar completely from your diet can be tough and for most people it’s a case of cutting back slowly. For example if you currently put two spoonful’s of sugar in your tea and coffee then reduce the amount slowly reducing 2 to 1 and 1 to none. Also try removing those high sugar ‘snack’ foods that so many people eat to get through the day. Energy bars, cereal bars and confectionary are all packed with sugar so you should look to replace them with foods like fruit and nuts which will contain more natural sugars.
No fizzy drinks
Removing soda and other fizzy drinks is a must when first looking to remove sugar from your diet. Its’ not just fizzy drinks though that are high in sugar as many fruit drinks and flavoured waters are also high in their sugar content. For example flavoured water although titled ‘water’ is filled with artificial sweeteners, making it just as bad as fizzy drink in some cases. If you do prefer flavoured water then add flavour with a slice of lemon or orange to a glass of still water.
You’ll get there!
Of course, at first cutting done sugar with the purpose of removing it completely from your diet can seem like an impossible task. In time you will come to enjoy the natural sweet taste of vegetables and fruits and as you become used to consuming less sugar, your body will become more accustomed to it as well, meaning those sweet cravings will become less and less.
To begin with, why not try to remove sugar from your breakfast? Replace sugary breakfast cereals with things like porridge or homemade pancakes. Try adding a few spoonfuls of our flaxseed, cocoa and berries mix or our flax, chia, apple & cinnamon blend to give it a sweeter taste without the sugar.