Sugar tastes great but consuming too much of it can make us feel tired, depressed, and have harmful effects on our bodies.
According to the World Health Organization, lowering our sugar intake to roughly 25 grams per day can reduce cases of obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay.
Simply eating less sugar may sound easy, but there's one major problem: sugar is everywhere.
So what can we do to limit our sugar intake?
1. Check Nutritional Labels
Most products have a label with nutritional information.
Check this label to find out the sugar content and amount of added sugar in a product you're thinking about buying.
Look under the carbohydrates section. This is where sugars are usually listed.
Look for sugar, syrup, and words ending in -ose in the ingredients list. These are sugars that have been added to the product.
Which of these is a sugar?
2. Eat Whole Foods
Reading the label of every item you browse at the market can take up a lot of time.
So when you want to shop quickly and healthily, choose whole foods over processed foods.
A bag of potatoes is much less likely to contain added sugars than a bag of potato chips.
3. Eat More Protein And Healthy Fats
How many times have you eaten something sweet only to feel hungry again 20 minutes later?
This happens because sugary foods raise our blood glucose levels and then drop them. This leaves us feeling tired, irritable, and hungry for more sugar.
Eating more protein and healthy fats can reduce sugar cravings. It also leaves us feeling fuller, longer, by helping us maintain balanced blood glucose levels.
Good Sources of Protein
Good Sources of Healthy Fats
Which of these foods could help reduce sugar cravings by keeping you full longer?
4. Drink More Water
One of the most efficient ways to consume less sugar is to replace sodas, juices, and other sugary beverages with water.
If you are used to drinking sodas or juices:
Add fresh lime or lemon to your water to give it some flavor and get a healthy boost of vitamin C.
Drink sparkling water for the same bubbly texture of soda without all the harmful sugars.
Next time you're in the market, take a look at the amount of sugar in the products you normally buy. You may be surprised at how much sugar is added to most foods.