Every time people read there studies and research that cause many doubts: sometimes a food is considered harmful to health, now it is absolved and it appears on the list of foods beneficial to the body. It was the case of the egg, the avocado, the coffee and even the chocolate. But if there is a food that is unanimously pointed out by experts as extremely dangerous to health, it is sugar.
I’ll tell you what are the best ways to reduce this villain’s consumption and help your diet work even better.
The Danger of Excessive Consumption
In Brazil, especially, a quantity of sugar is consumed well above the recommended maximum limit, which causes serious consequences to our health:
- increased incidence of caries;
- weight gain (leading to overweight and obesity);
- alteration in the production of hormones;
- premature aging of the skin;
- increased risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer;
- propensity to develop type 2 diabetes.
In addition, consuming excess sugar can affect the entire effort of a calorie-controlled diet and even the exercise routine.
The Hidden Sugar
It’s important to remember that when I talk about sugar consumption, I’m not referring only to the spoons we put in the coffee or the juice in order to sweeten them. The greatest danger lies in what we call added sugar, which in addition to the sweetening function, is responsible for the texture, color, conservation and even fermentation of various food products. It is found in sugary drinks, pastries, cakes, biscuits, cereals, yogurts, salad dressings and even breads. Added to the natural sugar found in fruits, vegetables and dairy products, its consumption should not exceed 100 calories a day for women and 150 calories a day for men (about 6 and 9 teaspoons, respectively).
Keep an Eye on the Label
To find out if a product contains added sugar, pay attention to the label. It may appear under several names:
- high fructose corn syrup;
- cane juice;
- dextrin or dextrose;
- brown sugar;
- raw sugar
Special attention to fat free products: they usually have a higher amount of sugar and calories, so their consumption should be moderate and conscious.
To keep your body healed and to ensure a healthy life, check out some of the tips I carry for life and learn to reduce your daily sugar intake:
- Give up soft drinks and box juice: in addition to added sugar, they have a high concentration of dyes and preservatives. Replace with natural juices and especially water.
- Cut fast food and frozen ready meals: these items are rich in saturated fats, seasonings and condiments with lots of sugar and sodium, and are poor in vitamins and nutrients.
- Make smart changes at dessert time: candies, puddings, cakes and ice cream can stay for a special day; on a day-to-day basis, prefer fresh fruits such as apples, bananas and strawberries, which, despite containing natural sugar, are rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals.
- Try other ways to sweeten: artificial sweeteners should not be consumed without your doctor’s permission, but there are alternatives to white sugar that can bring health benefits – coconut sugar, demeraro sugar, honey, brown sugar and sucralose are good examples.
Now that you already know the bitter side of sugar, you can make good choices and decrease your consumption. Go!