Dallas Personal Trainer | Health, Fitness, and Weight Loss Tip

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Feb 12

Dallas Personal Trainer – Health, Fitness, and Weight Loss Tip

The Skinny on Sugar

It seems that when we are trying to lose weight, staying away from sugar can be very challenging.  Sugar provides the sweet flavor to foods to which it has been added, and is used in a variety of foods, including cookies, cakes, pickles, ice cream, alcohol and jams and jellies. In other words, it is what makes it taste so darn good!  So, at the end of the day, how much sugar can you eat and still eat healthy?

Unfortunately, there isn’t a simple answer, but to find the answer that is right for you, it is helpful to understand what sugar is, what it is not and how you can modify your eating habits to cut back the amount of sugar you consume without eliminating it completely.  Information is power and the better understanding you have of what it takes to eat a healthy diet as a lifestyle, the more successful you will be in losing and maintaining weight.

The truth is that sugar, which provides 15 calories per teaspoon, provides no vitamins and minerals, so it’s always a good idea to use it in moderation.

Here’s the science on it…

There are two types of sugars – monosaccharides (one molecule), which include glucose, fructose and galactose, and disaccharides (two molecules) which are formed when monosaccharides combine – for example, when glucose and fructose are combined; they form sucrose, also known as table sugar. Other disaccharides include maltose, dextrose and lactose. Bottom line… sugar is a simple carbohydrate. However, when a bunch of different sugar molecules combine they form a complex carbohydrate, also known as starch.

You can see why it is so important to read food labels.  Pretty much anything that ends with “ose” is a type of sugar.  Other types of sugar include raw sugar, brown sugar, honey, molasses, maple sugar and corn syrup.

Here are some simple tips for reducing sugar in your diet to make room for more nutritious foods:

  • Read ingredient labels. If sugar is listed as the first, second or third ingredient, the product probably contains a large amount of sugar as a sweetener. Identify all the sugars in a product (sucrose, honey, glucose, molasses, dextrose, corn sweetener, fructose, high-fructose corn syrup, lactose, maltose, sorghum syrup, mannitol, fruit juice concentrate, sorbitol). Select items lower in added sugars when possible.
  • Buy fresh fruits or fruits packed in water, juice, or light syrup rather than those in heavy syrup.
  • Buy fewer foods that are high in sugars such as soft drinks, fruit-flavored punches and sweet desserts. Be aware that some low-fat desserts may be very high in sugar.
  • Add less sugar to coffee, tea, cereal or fruit. Get used to half as much, and then see if you can cut back even more.
  • Use less sugar in the foods you prepare at home. Try new recipes or adjust your own. Start by reducing sugars gradually until you’ve decreased them by one third or more.
  • As you reduce the sugar in your baked goods, try adding spices like cinnamon, cardamom, coriander, nutmeg, ginger and mace to enhance the sweet flavor of foods. Spiced foods will taste sweeter if warmed.

Here’s a guide for baking with less sugar:

For every cup of flour, use only:
Cakes and cookies 1/2 cup sugar
Muffins and quick breads 1 tablespoon sugar
Yeast breads 1 teaspoon sugar

Don’t worry – sugar isn’t your enemy. But reducing your sugar intake will help you cut calories and will allow you more room for more nutritious foods.

If you personally feel like you crave sugar too much and want to eliminate it from your diet completely, take a look at the video below.  It is very informational and although I cannot advocate all the steps included, the majority of the information is common sense.  It may be just the right approach you need to help stop your sugar cravings for good and make another step toward leading a healthy lifestyle.

Article written by : Julie McCan,  Get You In Shape Personal Trainer

Other sources:  

http://www.lifeclinic.com/focus/nutrition/sugar.asp

“Potatoes Not Prozac: Solutions for Sugar Sensitivity” by Kathleen DesMaisons Ph. D in Addictive Nutrition

Here is a great tip about How break your sugar addiction, lose weight and have more energy by taking the refined sugar out of your diet.

Here is a great tip about How break your sugar addiction, lose weight and have more energy by taking the refined sugar out of your diet.