Candy, cakes, cookies: These are one of the pleasures in life. And I’m all for you treating yourself from time to time. But did you know that these treats are probably only the tip of the iceberg in your sugar consumption? Because there is so much sweetness hidden in food that even those abstaining from dessert are probably eating too much sugar. And all this sugar might be making you fat and sick.
The good news is that there are easy ways to remove a lot of that excess sweet stuff. And the best part is you probably won’t even miss it! And that can leave you thinner, more energetic and less sick! Pretty amazing, huh?
Ready to look and feel your best? Here are 15 absolutely painless ways to cut sugar from your diet!
Protein Powder – You’ll be throwing all sorts of sweet fruit into your smoothie. Do you really need the extra sweetness from sugar? Purchase unsweetened protein powder and not only will your smoothie taste just as sweet, but it will be sweeter to your body as well.
Granola – Add sliced almonds, cashews, walnuts, dried coconut flakes, raisins, and dates into a bowl. Voila! You have cereal with no added sweeteners. Most commercial granola has about as much of the sweet stuff as a candy bar. And even if cereal is sweetened with agave or honey, that still means extra sugar for your body.
Honey Roasted Nuts – Nuts can be a healthy snack, but you’ll also find many unhealthy nut varieties in the store. Think honey roasted, ranch flavored or bbq. And these nut options are usually sweetened. Try this instead: drizzle raw cashews with melted coconut oil, chili powder and a touch of whole leaf stevia, Bake for an hour on low (200 degrees or lower). Healthy and tasty nuts made easy!
Non-Dairy Milk – More and more people are opting for non-dairy milk. Store shelves are filled with almond milk, coconut milk, hemp milk and rice milk. But these non-dairy milk varieties usually come with lots and lots of added sugar. And you’re often adding milk to things like cereal or coffee which may already be sweetened. So make sure to look for brands that are unsweetened. You won’t miss the sugar, I swear.
Salad Dressing – A salad sounds healthy, doesn’t it? But it’s not so healthy when you throw sugar on top of it in the form of salad dressing. Many store-bought salad dressings contain a ton of the sweet stuff. Make your own salad dressing at home. Oil and vinegar dressing is a basic option. Or find a favorite recipe and substitute whole leaf stevia for the recommended sweetener.
Cough Drops – When your throat is sore, any type of relief is greatly appreciated. But most cough drops have as much sugar as any other hard candy. And sugar weakens your immunity which is the last thing you need when fighting a cold. Try relying more on tea with lemon for a scratchy throat. Your sugar intake will decrease, your immunity will strengthen and you’ll feel amazing before you know it!
Canned Soup – True story: my husband brought home a “healthy” brand of low-sodium lentil soup the other day. How did the soup compensate for the lack of sodium? Extra sugar! And this brand is marketed specifically to those watching their health. Just because you’re buying vegetable soup doesn’t mean it’s wholesome. If you’re going to buy soup in a can or in a box, make sure to check the label for added sweet stuff.
Kombucha – Many consider this drink to be a healing, miracle elixir. But the problem with most store bought brands of kombucha is that they are overloaded with sweeteners. If you really want a healthy drink that isn’t water, try an unsweetened green tea. Or if you want something fermented, try unsweetened kefir. But most commercial “health drinks” are flowing with sugar.
Pasta Sauce – You can make a pretty quick healthy pasta sauce at home. Just combine:
- diced tomatoes with their juice
garlic and onions
spices like oregano, basil, and red pepper
Simmer for about 15 minutes and serve. Fresh food doesn’t have to be complicated. But when you buy store bought pasta sauce, you might be pouring sugar right onto your dinner.
Multi-Grain Bread – There are a few brands of bread that aren’t sweetened. But you have to be diligent when reading labels. Even wholesome-sounding bread varieties like wheat bread, whole grain bread and sprouted grain bread have added sugar. And you probably don’t enjoy the sugar in bread like you do in a cake. Don’t waste your sugar intake on foods you’re eating to nourish your body! Read labels and find a bread that doesn’t rely on sugar to taste good.
Fruit Cocktail – All fruit is naturally sweet, but that’s ok because the fiber in fruit slows the speed of sugar digestion. This means that sugar consumed as whole fruit isn’t damaging to the body. However, fruit sold in a can or a cup is a different story. That fruit is often is sitting in a liquid of corn syrup and other sugars. This is the type of sweetener that is damaging. If you don’t have the time to cut your own homemade fruit salad, purchase chopped frozen fruit and let it defrost an hour before eating. Frozen fruit rarely contains added sweeteners.
Bran Muffins – People often assume that foods containing the word bran are healing foods. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Bran muffins can contain as much sugar as a chocolate chip muffin. This doesn’t mean you can never eat a bran muffin. But it needs to be consumed as a treat. The problem with bran muffins is that people eat them thinking they are nutritious, and then they reward themselves with a cookie. Now they’ve had a double dose of sugar.
Yogurt – I’ve talked about this before, but most commercial yogurts contain so much added sugar. And this is frustrating because people choose yogurt thinking it’s a nutritious snack. Try this instead. Let frozen fruit defrost for about a half hour and mix it into your plain yogurt. The fruit will sweeten the yogurt in a way that is much healthier for blood sugar. And you won’t miss the store bought fruit on the bottom variety.
Dried Fruit – You might choose dried fruit because it sounds like a healthy sweet snack. But the crazy thing is that much of the dried fruit on the market is sold with even more added sugar. You get sugary dried cranberries or sweetened dried pineapple chunks. Make sure to purchase your dried fruit naturally dried without additives. It will have s0 much natural sweetness that you’ll never miss that extra stuff.
Instant Oatmeal – While oats can be healthy, these little bags of instant oatmeal are usually dessert disguised as breakfast. A better choice is to get plain oatmeal and liven it up yourself. Add nuts, coconut flakes and fresh fruit. This will taste even better than the processed stuff. And you’ll cut a whole bunch of unnecessary sugar out of your diet.
So that is my 15 absolutely painless ways to cut sugar from your diet
These are 15 ways to take sugar out of your diet where it isn’t needed. Save your sugar intake for yummy treats. Don’t waste it on foods that you’re eating to be healthy. Just a few of these small changes could mean a big difference for your health and your waistline.