I won’t lie, it can be hard to reduce your sugar intake, especially if you’re used to indulging it. But it is not impossible or miserable & the benefits are just too good. Just to remind you of the facts I shared in my Newsletter:
- A 20 ounce bottle of soda contains the equivalent of approximately 17 teaspoons of sugar.
- One soda a day increases a child’s risk of obesity by 60%.
- Individuals who drink one to two sugar-sweetened beverages per day have a 26% higher risk for developing type II diabetes.
- It will take a 110-pound child 75 Minutes of bike riding to burn off the calories in one 20 ounce bottle of soda.
- There is overwhelming evidence of the link between obesity & the consumption of sweetened beverages such as soda, energy drinks, sweet teas, & sports drinks.
So what about all these artificial sweeteners & sugar substitutes out there? Well, more bad news, they are also not so great. Artificial sweeteners, even natural ones like Stevia, which comes from an herb, are still not great for you because of how much sweeter they are than sugar. Stevia is 200 to 300 times sweeter than table sugar. So why is this bad? Well there is some research out there that suggests that exposing your tastebuds to this taste frequently can make you less receptive to natural sources of sweetness such as fruit. Meaning you might seek out sweeter & sweeter foods as you become used to that taste. Susan Swithers, PhD, professor of behavioral neuroscience at Purdue University and a leading researcher on artificial sweeteners, has research that suggests that these sweeteners prevent your body from producing GLP-1, a hormone that controls blood sugar levels and feelings of satiety. Meaning this could cause you to feel hungrier than you actually are, causing you to eat more.
Also, I just happen to think that Stevia tastes super weird. I can almost always identify foods that use it, they all have that same weird, overly sweet, kind of chemically-strange taste to it. LOL. However, that is just me.
The best, simplest, yet difficult thing to do is to just avoid sugar as much as you possibly can. That’s it. Do I sometimes have a donut, or a cookie, or treat myself to an ice-cream cone, yes of course. But I don’t consume it every day & I make sure not to have it in my home, so that I don’t reach for it.
I keep my fridge & pantry stocked with real, whole foods, fruits, veggies, grains, oats, and I don’t buy processed products, that I know could contain some sneaky sugar.
I wish I had some revolutionary & easy way for you to cut out sugar, but unfortunately the reality of added sugar is that it is bad & should be eaten as little as possible. The silver lining is that you will most certainly feel better, function better, & look better if you are more conscious of your sugar intake & genuinely try to only allow it as an occasional treat.
Some resources for you to check out if you’re interested.