Sugar is inherent in real food, so we are hardwired to enjoy sweet, sugary treats. However this desire has been exploited by the ready availability of processed sugary foods. Yet we can ween ourselves off the processed sweet stuff by making better choices. We know what to do, right? Cut down or cut out cakes, candy, chocolate, muffins and definitely sodas. Job done, right?
Turns out hidden sugars can be hard to spot. Even the health conscious may be eating them. Sneaky sugars are everywhere, and with confusing labelling, they can be difficult to identify. But there is one thing that helps – with some 74% of packaged foods in supermarkets containing sugar, it’s best to assume it’s in there.
Examples of hidden sugars and alternatives:
Boxed cereals – Choose oats or quinoa flakes
Salad dressing – Make your own with olive oil & vinegar
Brand Yogurt – Stick to plain Greek yogurt
Fruit Smoothies – Eat the whole fruit
All sodas & Diet – Drink fruit flavoured water
Energy drinks – Drink water – add electrolytes if required
Fruit juice – Eat the whole fruit
Pasta sauces – A can of chopped tomatoes + spices and herbs = no hidden sugar + salt
Lattes – Drink black coffee, or add a dash of milk – or switch to tea
Ready Meals – Home cooked ingredients are healthier
With ketchup and other condiment sauces, watch the portion size – a couple of tablespoons of ketchup contain the same amount of sugar as a glazed doughnut.
The quickest, safest and easiest way to avoid hidden sugar is to prioritize single, whole ingredient foods in your diet. A piece of fish, an orange or a handful of nuts have no ingredients or additives list. Real food doesn’t need a barcode! And don’t be fooled if a product is advertised as ‘healthy’, read the label.
Make eating real food Just Routine