How to cut sugar from your diet

The body needs glucose for fuel, but most Canadians are overfilling their tanks. Everyday, Canadians consume about 26 teaspoons of sugar from all sources. About half is coming from added sugars, now a staple in most grocery store food items. Some of the biggest offenders include desserts, regular pop and sauces. The WHO is now recommending we slash our added sugar consumption in half with even further health benefits if we can get down to about six teaspoons per day. You’d be looking at about a half a can of pop a day or you could have three double doubles if that’s your preference or you could have a caramilk bar. Registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator Daphna Steinberg says, not all calories are created equal, so avoiding added sugars is advised. So limiting those foods is beneficial because they are taking the place of other nutrient dense foods in your diet like the milk and the fruit and the vegetables. Too much added sugar has been linked to a host of health risks including dental cavities, obesity diabetes and death from heart disease. So what does all this mean for you? Steinberg says the first step is being aware. The food labels don’t distinguish between added sugars and naturally occuring sugars. She says artificial sweeteners can play a role in satisfying your cravings, but the best approach is going cold turkey. And there has been research that’s shown that if you do cut out added sugars, you do actually start to decrease your cravings over time. And remember, there are many sweet foods without added sugars you can feel good about eating. Another reason to reach for that apple a day. With Sunnyview, I’m Monica Matys.

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