We all know that we should be eating less sugar, even though we may not want to. You’re walking down the candy aisle and you see the Snickers bar calling out your name, but you know you shouldn’t do it. Why? In today’s article, we will go over the reasons why you need to cut some sugar out of your diet, and the easiest ways to do so.
Sugar You Should Cut
First and foremost, it’s important to understand the types of sugar you should be cutting out of your diet. Natural sugars – the “good” type of sugars – are essential to the body and can be found in whole foods, such as apples.
These types of foods have vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that help nourish the body. An apple has fibre which can satisfy your hunger and help your body absorb the sugar from the body.
Added sugars, on the other hand, are not a “good” type of sugar. They are simply extra calories with no extra nutrition. They’re considered empty calories that can lead to weight gain and other health problems.
Why You Should Cut Added Sugars
Understanding why added sugars are so bad for your health will help you better understand why you should cut added sugars from your diet. Some of the reasons include:
Eating too much food with empty calories can lead to weight gain. Eating foods that are high in added sugar could make you more likely to eat too much over the course of the day. Replacing these empty calories with whole foods will help you feel full sooner making it less likely that you overeat.
Lower Risk of Heart Disease
High triglycerides can raise your risk of heart disease. Eating fewer foods with added sugar will lower those levels and may help reduce or eliminate the weight gain and fat buildup that are linked to heart disease. Even if you’re at a healthy weight, getting more than 20% of your calories from added sugar can lead to heart disease.
One of the major benefits of eating less sugar is improved dental health. Sugars are the primary food source for the bacteria that grow in your mouth. This bacteria can lead to tooth decay, cavities, and more serious infections. It will be worse if you don’t brush and floss every day. Cutting out added sugars could help slow or stop the decay.
Easy Ways to Eat Less Sugar
Eating less sugar is easier said than done, especially when you consider how much added sugar is in the foods that we love. Here are some tips to help you cut out those sugars while improving your overall well-being:
- Keep sugary foods away: The easiest way to eat less sugar is to have less sugary foods around. Don’t tempt yourself by keeping candy, cookies, and other high-sugar foods in your fridge or pantry.
- Sweeten the foods yourself: Adding sweeteners to your food or drinks yourself could help. Even though you are adding sugar, it will most likely be less than what the manufacturers put in.
- Watch for hidden sugars: Avoid foods where sugar often hides, like reduced-fat products. Read those labels and determine yourself if a product is overly sugared.
- Eat a healthy breakfast: Eating a healthy breakfast can help you avoid added sugar. Starting your day with a nutritious meal makes it less likely that you will give in to cravings as the day goes on.
- Exercise: Moving helps the body use sugar more effectively which results in maintaining weight control.
- Sleep: Keeping on a sleep/wake schedule will help your body in line and might help you from reaching for sugar.
- Dilute your fruit juice: Add some water to your juice to reduce the amount of sugar in your drink.
It may not be easy, but cutting out added sugar can help you greatly improve your overall well-being.
We’re Ready to Help You Take Control of Your Health
If you’re ready to take control of your health, Dr. Leo and our team at Today’s Integrative Health are here to help. We offer a wide range of integrative health services, including nutritional services, to help you regain control of your health.
Feel free to visit our offices! We are located at 6321 Executive Blvd, Rockville, MD 20852, in the Executive. If you live in Rockville, Maryland, our team is ready to help!