Even small children know that industrial sugar is bad for your health. On the other hand, eating healthy by adopting a sugar-free diet that promotes vitamins, minerals and good fats can add years to our lifespan while improving its overall quality. But just knowing something is beneficial doesn’t mean doing it will be easy… Yes, this sweet white stuff is addictive like any other drug and leaving it forever doesn’t seem like that easy. So how do you take the leap without headaches and stress so that this resolution is long-term? Here are 5 tips and good gestures that will be super useful to you!
The essential steps to adopt the sugar-free diet
As you probably already know, excessive consumption of white sugar is linked to obesity, diabetes, certain heart diseases, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and a number of inflammatory processes in the body. Therefore, by adopting a sugar-free diet, the risk of being affected by these disorders decreases considerably. Keeping this in mind will motivate you to stick to your new diet, along with the tips below.
Gradual start for a long-term sugar-free diet
Many people aim to lose weight fast and they are ready for drastic changes. But starting slowly is a more effective strategy when it comes to sticking to a healthy diet over time. You have to give your body the chance to adapt to the new conditions, which means that during the first few weeks you can gradually reduce your sugar intake and filter its sources instead of stopping it outright. This will allow you to moderate the effects of withdrawal and reprogram your taste buds.
In the meantime, eat foods containing natural sugars, such as fresh fruits and especially red berries, which are also rich in nutrients, polyphenols and fiber. Likewise, opt for natural Bulgarian yogurt instead of fruit flavored options and put half a spoonful of honey in your coffee instead of a good spoonful of white sugar.
Eliminate obvious sources first
Quite often, you don’t even have to read the label to know that a food contains industrial sugar in significant amounts. Logically, all cakes, cookies, sweets and chocolates in mass production hardly get along with a sugar-free diet. These foods are the first to exclude from your new balanced diet. As you get used to your routine, you can also cut out foods high in natural sugars like animal milk, dates, raisins, and other dried fruits. Gradually, your brain will grasp the main idea and the cravings will become increasingly rare.
Look at food labels
Switching to a healthy lifestyle and a sugar-free diet means you will have to learn to avoid the pitfalls. And there are everywhere and of all kinds! For example, you will find “hidden” sugar in many, if not most, products commonly found in supermarkets even though they have nothing to do with sweets. Almost all pre-prepared and frozen meals contain a mixture of additives such as preservatives, colorings, etc. Sugars are not excluded from this explosive mixture whether in the form of regular sugar or sweeteners. Premade sauces, several breads and cereals, some burgers, and deli meats in general also fall into this category.
The easiest and most effective way to eliminate hidden sources of sugar is to read the nutritional information and ingredient list on food labels. At best, the label should indicate both total sugars and added sugars. Of course, some foods, like fresh fruits and vegetables, don’t come with a label, but you can always look up the nutrition information online.
Learn the code names of sugar
Sugar has many sneaky aliases, and you’ll have to learn to recognize them if you want to cut it out of your diet completely. A general rule of thumb, look for ingredients ending in “-ose” most of which are forms of sugar. In other words, glucose, maltose, sucrose, dextrose, fructose and lactose do not rhyme with a sugar-free diet per se. Apart from the “-oses”, keep an eye out for molasses, agave, corn, rice, malt or maple syrups, maltodextrin and fruit juice concentrate.
Diet without sugar and artificial sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners can be 200 to 13,000 times sweeter than real sugar! They have a different chemical composition and various effects on our body, but from a purely psychological point of view, their consumption tricks the brain into believing that we are really eating sugar.
So at the start of your journey, allow yourself a little stevia if you can’t get by without it, but in the long run it’s better to rule it out. Some substitutes like saccharin, aspartame and sucralose are actually dangerous to your health and should be avoided completely, whether you are on a sugar-free diet or not.
Source used: www.healthline.com