Regardless of whether or not you suffer from diabetes, sugar is a very dangerous part of your diet. Sugar is dangerous because it has a way of grabbing hold of you and sneaking into your daily intake. Even when we are “being aware” sugar can sneak up on us. On the bright side, it is also a fairly easy solution. Perhaps not easy to enact, but the solution is clear.
Here are 10 quick and powerful ways to cut down on your sugar intake and avoid the dangers that come along with excessive use:
Put down the soft drinks – Remember how I said it would not be easy. Here is exhibit one. Soft drinks are not going to be easy to put down if you are a lifelong drinker. The same can be said for sweet tea and countless other drinks that are loaded with sugar. This is the first and most important step in controlling sugar.
Switch to low-glycemic foods – This is something that might be confusing to a person that is non-diabetic but the bottom line is that some foods raise glucose levels and some foods lower them. Knowing the difference is a huge step in lowering your sugar intake. Here is a guide for those that are not aware.
Read your labels – Educating yourself is huge in the world of food intake. You would be shocked at some of the things we regularly eat but have no idea about. That said, sugar is a prime suspect and is easily overlooked. Start looking at the sugar amounts in everything you eat and you will start to understand why we struggle with it. This leads into the next tip which is…
Understand that sugar has many names – Sugar is not always going to be labeled as such on a food or drink label. There are many hidden versions of sugar and they can be quite sneaky. Some of the more common sugar aliases include fructose (in fact any word that ends in “ose” is probably going to be a suspect), cane syrup, invert sugar, honey, maple syrup and so on. Note that many of the aliases are actually naturally occurring products that happen to be loaded with sweet.
Resist the diet stuff – Fake sugar is almost as bad as the real thing and diet sodas and the like are loaded with it. This only tricks your taste buds into identifying sweet so that when you do get natural foods you won’t taste the sweetness. It is never a good thing to trick your body into thinking something that is not true. It messes with the natural process of things.
Work on honing your “natural sweet tooth” – This is tough, but effective. Honing your natural sweet tooth means drinking that unsweet tea with a bit of lemon or lime. It means eating oatmeal without added sugar. It means trying those things that you have been taught to think have no taste for your entire life. You will be amazed at how those things will taste after you retrain your sweet tooth.
Take it a bit at a time – Accept that it will not be overnight. You will slip and fall. You will make mistakes. Be cool with that and get back on the horse each time you do.
Adjust serving sizes – Your serving sizes are a huge key too. Instead of a whole cookie, eat half. Eat a quarter of a cookie and savor it. You will be surprised at how quickly your body will adjust.
Switch to water – Of all the things you can do to change your sugar profile, switching to water exclusively is the best one. Some folks find that simply doing this is enough to put their numbers in order. Give it a try for a week or two. Maybe you will find that you are perfectly okay with it after all!
What other sugar lowering methods have worked for you? Share with us in the comments!