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Ways to Minimize Sugar Intake

Minimize Sugar Intake

Excessive intake of refined sugars like honey, table sugar, and various syrups, should constitute no more than 5% of your daily caloric intake. For most individuals over the age of 11, this equates to roughly 30g a day.

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Understanding Sugar’s Disguises

Sugar can appear under numerous names on ingredient labels:

  • fructose
  • maltose
  • glucose
  • sucrose
  • molasses
  • fruit concentrates
  • invert sugar
  • corn sweeteners
  • hydrolysed starch
  • natural sweeteners like honey

Food packaging offers insight into sugar levels:

  • High in sugar – over 22.5g of sugar per 100g
  • Low in sugar – under 5g of sugar per 100g

Many products employ a color-coded scheme to help you identify low sugar, salt, and fat contents. Aim to pick products with predominantly green and amber markings, limiting those with red labels.

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Kickstart Your Day Right

A significant number of breakfast cereals are laden with sugar. Consider alternatives such as:

  • unsweetened wholegrain flakes
  • sugar-free muesli
  • basic oatmeal
  • unsweetened wheat biscuits
  • fresh fruit atop plain yoghurt
  • whole grain toast

Oats are nutritious and pocket-friendly. Create oatmeal using milk of varying fat content or even water. Reduce direct sugar additions by incorporating fruits like bananas or dried apricots.

To lessen sugar gradually, interchange between sugar-rich and sugar-free cereals or mix them. If sweetening cereals is a habit, decrease the amount over time or add fruits to compensate. Opt for whole grain bread over white and minimize sweet spreads or find sugar-reduced versions.

Explore healthy breakfast ideas here.

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Mindful Main Courses

Many seemingly unsweet dishes might harbor hidden sugars. Pre-packaged meals, some soups, and sauces might contain more sugar than anticipated. Dining out? Be wary of dishes notorious for their sugar content, including certain Asian cuisines and salads with sugary dressings.

Commonly used condiments like ketchup can contain up to 23g of sugar per 100g. Though consumed in small amounts, these can accumulate if ingested daily.

Read also tips on How To Reduce Cholesterol

Snack Smart

Opt for healthier snacks:

  • Fresh or canned fruit (in their own juice)
  • Unsalted nuts
  • Plain popcorn
  • Crackers with light cheese
  • Reduced-sugar yoghurts

Practice portion control; if your treat has two parts, consider sharing or saving the other half. Shop for reduced-sugar variants of your beloved snacks, or select smaller packages.

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Look for healthier versions of:

  • Cereal bars – Many are high in sugar and fat. Find ones with reduced sugar, fat, and salt.
  • Chocolate – Choose low-calorie dark cocoa drinks. Some even come infused with coffee or malt.
  • Cookies – Transition to oat-based biscuits or plain rice cakes that offer fiber.
  • Pastries – Choose malt loaves, fruit scones, or plain currant buns. Be mindful of toppings and spreads.

Read also: Alternatives To Your Favorite Foods When You Are On A Diet

Though dried fruits are nutritious, they’re sugary and can stick to teeth. It’s better to consume them during meals rather than snacking on them.

Beverage Choices

Almost 25% of our daily sugar intake can come from beverages. An average cola can has 35g of sugar. Contemplate switching to water, unsweetened beverages, or low-fat milk.

Gradually reduce sugar in tea or coffee or use alternatives like sweeteners. Experiment with herbal teas or natural infusions using lemon or ginger.

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Despite their nutritional value, fruit juices have natural sugars. Aim to limit juices and smoothies to a combined total of 150ml daily.

Dessert Decisions

Establish parameters. Evaluate if you need a dessert daily. Explore less sugary options such as fruits, low-sugar rice pudding, or unsweetened yoghurts.

Remember, low-fat doesn’t always mean low-sugar. At the store, compare dessert labels and select the lower-sugar alternative.

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