04 Jul 5 Ways to Reduce (or Eliminate) Sugar
We all know too much sugar is not good for us, so we’ve put together 5 ways to reduce (or eliminate) sugar in your diet.
There are no secrets to starting a sustainable journey towards better health. If you’ve failed in the past, it’s possibly due to an underlying sugar addiction. After all, our bodies are hardwired to enjoy sweet things right from our first puree as a baby. That delicious taste offers a natural “high”, and releases endorphins to calm and relax us (may be why many Mums are looking for chocolate…me included!).
It is important to alter your diet if you want to feel healthier, lighter, and more energized. With the average Australian consuming over 20 teaspoons of sugar a day we need to remember the recommended sugar intake:
For women – approximately 6 teaspoons per day
For men – approximately 9 teaspoons per day.
For child preschool age – approximately 3-4 teaspoons per day
For tween and teen age – approximately 5-8 teaspoons per day
If you are ready to break the addiction and reveal a brighter lifestyle, here are some tips that might help you cut sugar out of your diet.
1. Cut down slowly
You don’t have to go cold turkey. Take conscious steps to cut down sugar intake slowly. For example, diminish the teaspoons of sugar in your coffee one by one until your taste buds feel fewer cravings for sugar.
2. Swap for unrefined, natural sweeteners
You can read our blog post about 25 tips for making real food changes with your family. Here we suggest ditching the sugar and choosing unrefined sweeteners in strict moderation. Try honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar, brown rice syrup but use these in smaller quantities each time you prepare a dish.
3. Go half-half
Give in a little by going half-half. Eat just half a cookie, replace half a tub of sweetened yogurt with half of plain yogurt or use half the sugar asked by your recipe. It’s just about reacquainting those taste buds with different flavours and levels of satisfaction.
4. Swap junk for real food
Reduce (to eventually eliminate) junk foods and replace with fresh real foods. Get your natural sugars from fruits to improve digestion and overall wellbeing. Keep the right foods handy so that when sugar cravings hit, the right choice is always within arm’s reach. Think a small fruit bowl on your desk, or a package of nuts in your bag.
5. Read food labels
Learn to read the labels on foods and be careful for ‘hidden sugars’, unhealthy fats, preservatives and additives including artificial colours. A great example is the high sugars (some up to 13g+) found in your children’s pre-pakaged squeezy yoghurt pouches. Keep in mind, 1 teaspoon of sugar is equal to 4 grams! This is one reason I designed the Zestio Reusable Food Pouch too… know what is in your kids food!
Most of all, get up, go have fun or just distance yourself from the temptation and you’ll be well on your way to reduce (or eliminate) sugar in your diet.