Sugar has slowly become an acceptable addition to most food items, but this has only been in recent times. 150 years ago it was actually quite hard to obtain from nature, and as a result we humans haven’t developed a way to curb our addiction. If you want to learn how we’re supposed to eat, check out this course and learn everything you can make with a raw food diet. Today, an average person eats over 2 pounds (just under a kilogram) of sugar every week. I don’t know about you, but I find that very alarming.
The anti-sugar lobby is claiming sugar is the new tobacco, but it is actually responsible for the alarmingly increasing rate of obesity we see all around us. Our taste buds desire us to eat sweet food, and the more we eat – the more gets stored in our bodies as fat. Sugar is an unnecessary source of calories, and eating less will help your health. High consumption of sugar is linked to many problems, from cavities in your teeth to diabetes, and can cause hyperactivity followed by energy slumps after consuming too much. If you’ve had problems with diabetes, this course will help you navigate the maze of everything you need to know in order to get on top of it all.
With this in mind, many families are deciding to cut sugar entirely from their diets. Their motivation ranges from wanting to lose weight, get in shape, or just feel better overall while setting a good example for your children. The first step is to eliminate the foods you’re eating that often have high levels of hidden sugar, like fast food, and pre-processed items, cereals (check the amount of sugar, even if they ‘look healthy), bread and bakery products, fruit juice and soda, canned products, flavored dairy products (like fruit yoghurt), and ready to eat meals. While you’re doing this, you’ll notice many companies often call “sugar” something else, as it can also appear in different guises. Fructose, syrup, sweetener, maltose, sucrose, molasses, dextrose, honey and glucose are all different forms of sugar.
So what can you eat? After eliminating all of the above, you may be scratching your head thinking now, well what can I actually have for lunch. Luckily, there are many whole food products that you can replace the sugary foods in your diet with, and they all taste delicious! Don’t worry if you’ve never cooked with these products before, this course covers everything you need to know to make healthy food delicious.
One of your best bets for weight loss is the traditional, non-starchy vegetables. Eating these will give you a boost in nutrients, have much less calories than their sugary counterparts, and will also leave you feeling fuller for longer. Try to incorporate vegetables like spinach, kale and leafy greens into your regular meals, as well as bok choy and broccoli. Onions, mushrooms and cucumbers are also great for you, as well as cauliflower and bell peppers. Brussels sprouts are another healthy super-food, and asparagus is very good for you. Beans come into your new food list, and are a fantastic source of protein, but cook them fresh, do not use the tinned variety.
You’ll still need to get some starch in your diet, so don’t completely cut out sweet potato, regular potatoes and squash. The best part is that they’ll help give you nutrients without raising your blood sugar levels.
Whilst bread products are a no-no, whole grains will actually help you on this diet. Try brown rice and oatmeal for the carbohydrates (and energy) you need, as well as any products made with whole grain flour (not whole flour), so long as they don’t have any sugars added.
Dairy products are great for you as they contain a high amount of protein, calcium and healthy carbohydrates after you’ve cut out breads and fast foods. You’ll need to look for the plain versions, as flavored milk and yoghurts often are packed full of sugar. Grab some cheese, natural yoghurt and milk, for when you start getting cravings, and low fat sour cream is also an excellent sugar free product.
There is natural sugar in almost every fruit, but if you’re selective you can still enjoy these as a delicious snack and avoid the fruits that are the worst for you. Try berries like raspberries, cranberries and blackberries, as well as cantaloupes, watermelon, nectarines, papaya, strawberries, and peaches. Avoid dried fruits at all costs, because while they’re still technically a fruit, they have very high concentrations of dried natural sugar.
High Protein Food
Eating a high protein diet is a fantastic way to keep your stomach feeling full for longer. This means you won’t be having hunger pains, and strolling to the kitchen for a snack before meal time. Try to incorporate more fish, chicken, eggs, and meat into your diet. Look for the lean meat varieties, and trim the cuts of beef, pork or lamb before you cook them, and take the skin off the chicken. Cottage cheese is another fantastic source of protein, as well as smoked salmon. For a quick snack grab a handful of roasted nuts, like almonds or cashews, just make sure they are not salted if you really want to be healthy.
Foods with Healthy Fat
Not all fat is bad, and foods which give your body healthy fats can help you to absorb antioxidants. These antioxidants are primarily found in fruits and vegetables, and when they’re absorbed into your body, will also leave you feeling fuller for longer, so you can stave off snacking! Make sure you include fresh avocados, nuts and olive oil in your diet, and you’ll soon stop snacking. Nut butter is another source of healthy fats, and is also high in protein.
All the Rest
Unsweetened jellies and gelatin are okay to eat, and coffee lovers are in luck, so long as you’re drinking your morning cup of joe without sugar. Unsweetened tea is another nice drink, as well as hot chocolate when you want to have something sweet. You can also continue to use dressings like mayonnaise, but be sure to check the ingredients on the back of the bottle to make sure there is no hidden sugars.
When you hit an absolute wall, and you feel like there’s nothing going to stop you demolishing a six-pack of coca cola, and then a tower of burgers, these last list of foods are very low in sugar, and can be eaten in moderation to stop you from falling off the horse. After steering clear of processed fruit juice and soda, you’re probably craving a nice sugary drink. The good news is that you can have freshly squeezed fruit juice (in moderation) if it’s been unsweetened, and you can still have desserts if it’s been sweetened with fruit. Chocolate that is at least 60% cacao is OK, as well as a small portion of sugar free ice cream when you’ve been strict on yourself for an entire week.
Eating sugar free foods is fantastic for your body, but it can be hard to get used to. So don’t try to go cold turkey, rather ease yourself into it and make it a lifestyle change that you can maintain for the long term. Sticking to a no sugar diet is that is very beneficial for people with diabetes, that have food allergies and even those with a problem in their own blood sugar levels. It also makes it simple to keep track of your calories, on this diet you aren’t eating any useless calories so you don’t need to track them!
What is very difficult though, is cutting out sugar entirely from your diet. Whenever you go out to eat, nearly all foods from the store or a restaurant have some sort of sugar in them. This makes it very difficult to stick to your diet, especially if you don’t have a lot of time to read the back of every item you’re buying before putting it in your trolley. One course that is fantastic at this is healthy eating for business travelers, which teaches you how to eat right, no matter how hectic your schedule is.
For the best results, you should also include an exercise program with your no sugar diet, and make the most of your new transition so you become a healthier you. When you’re just getting started check out this recent post and learn how to do your own fitness assessment (at home) so you can track and monitor all of your improvements. What are you waiting for, get started now!